LOCASH, the musical duo composed of singer/songwriters Chris Lucas and Preston Brust, was already a need-to-know band in country music before their 2021 EP Woods & Water. After all, their last three records have charted in the top 40 on the U.S. Country charts and several of their songs are certified Gold (like their 2016 hit “I Know Somebody”). But now, with its release of Woods & Water, the pair of artists are showing the world that endless levels of LOCASH have yet to be unlocked.
To catch up on all things LOCASH, American Songwriter swung by the duo’s set up at this year’s CMA Music Festival where the duo was performing.
“It is full out there, and the festival is back,” Lucas says about the Nashville festival. CMA Fest took a two-year break between 2019 and 2022 due to the pandemic. “It’s always good when you walk up and your publicist says they’re at capacity.”
Among the many songs that LOCASH is playing live is the duo’s latest collaborative track with Mike Love and Bruce Johnston of The Beach Boys. Their song together is aptly titled “Beach Boys.” It’s a remix of an earlier version that LOCASH released on Woods & Water that came together after one particularly exciting call from Love.
“When we wrote ‘Beach Boys,’ the original version, it didn’t have The Beach Boys on it,” Lucas explains. “We had to wait for them. We had to wait three months to even get them to approve it. And when they did approve it, they also said they wanted to sing on it. That was a moment [we’ll] never forget.”
“We didn’t think they were ever going to approve it. Then I got a phone call, one day, from Mike Love,” Brust adds. That phone call solidified the blossoming friendship and partnership between the two bands. Oh, and Mike Love is as groovy as you’d expect. “He speaks in this slow banter, and it’s real cool, ultra-cool,” Brust says. “He was like, ‘Well, you can call me Dr. Love.’”
After that phone call, LOCASH drove their neon green tour bus to Tuscaloosa, Alabama, to meet up with The Beach Boys in person. Parked backstage at a Beach Boys concert, the musicians recorded the song “Beach Boys” in the dressing room of the LOCASH bus.
“We were just feeling like teenagers again,” Brust says of the experience. “I mean, [it’s] so much fun to work with your idols.”
And not only did Lucas and Brust collaborate with The Beach Boys, but they were also handed the proverbial torch to carry. “The Beach Boys can’t get any more famous. They’re already there, and they’re not trying to get more famous,” Brust says. “They [The Beach Boys] were like, ‘So this [collaboration] is about LOCASH for us. We want to pass the baton to you guys. We want to be a part of what’s going on in your success story and your journey.”
“The baton is very heavy,” Lucas chimes in. “We probably can’t pick it up for a while, but we’re working on it.”
Outside of the success of “Beach Boys,” the boys of LOCASH are ready to fully celebrate Woods & Water with their fans. For Lucas, “Sippin Sunsets” stands out on the EP. The song captures the feeling of wanting nothing more than the simple yet priceless pleasure that soaking up a sunset affords. “I came up with the idea of ‘Sippin Sunsets’ on a bridge in Tampa,” Lucas explains, “looking at the sunset going down, I’m like, ‘How do we drink that?’”
Another can’t-miss song on the record is the ever clever “Chillionaire.”
“We were like this is gonna go out to all the dudes and folks who just love to sit in a lawn chair out back and drink a beer and they just feel really rich,” Brust says. “That makes you feel wealthy right there because you’re like, ‘Man, I’m just livin’ large today.’”
If cold cans was cold cash
I’d have fat stacks everywhere
If time is money, I’m swimmin’ in it, honey
Self-madе in the shade, straight chillionaire
And as far as the EP title goes, Lucas clarifies that the Woods & Water represents the two halves of LOCASH. Lucas is the water, and Brust is the woods. Just as two sides of the same coin, the pair complement each other in their craft.
Still admirably humble, though, LOCASH also points to their mentor Jeffrey Steele as another motivator for success. Steele always advises LOCASH to make every line a home run and to “never skimp on the ingredients” of songwriting.
As far as we can tell, LOCASH is still hitting homers and serving up first-class songs.
Photo Credit: Chris Hollo