For over two decades, Rascal Flatts led country music in their rock showmanship and faithful positivity. The Ohio trio scored 17 No.1 singles and sold over 23 million albums, while also selling more than 11 million concert tickets and earning over 40 awards. In January of 2020, the enduring road warriors announced their retirement, promising fans one more round of shows.
Videos by American Songwriter
By mid-March, that was looking grim. Like the rest of the industry, their Farewell Tour was canceled, ending an era without a proper goodbye. This what not what anyone had in mind, but lead vocalist Gary LeVox chased the silver linings and crossed an item off his bucket list—a solo Christian collection.
Released on May 21, LeVox’s five-track EP, One on One boasts the artist’s unmatched vocal talent to deliver hopeful messages to weary listeners. Though it’s the first step in his solo artistry, he credits his “congregation” of special talents, including friends, family, and influences who carried him into this new chapter.
His solo project began with the timely “The Distance.” Penned with Josh Hodge and Matthew McVaney, the song shaped the entire EP. He combines his strong faith and veteran status in music to answer a long-felt calling. In a moment of disconnectedness and fear, LeVox wielded his platform for good, re-energizing his artistry.
Stepping out of a trio after 20 years allowed the artist newfound creative freedom in his song selections and collaborations. GRAMMY-winning Gospel talent Jonathan McReynolds offers a testimony of gratitude for “Never Forget.” “He’s a dear friend of mine and a mighty talented songwriter,” LeVox tells American Songwriter. “I am so humbled to sing one of his songs on this record.” With the help of MercyMe, LeVox lifts spirits through “A Little Love”(Bart Millard, Jordan Mohilowski, Ethan Hulse, Jess Cates).
LeVox describes “While I Wait,” featuring his daughter Brittany, as a “proud daddy moment.” Together, their intertwining harmonies breathe new life into the Tauren Wells track, co-written with Ethan Hulse and Colby Wedgeworth.
“All I See” features BRELAND who co-wrote the song with LeVox and McVaney. The two met for the first time in the studio working on the breakthrough artist’s record.
“He’s a preacher’s kid, so I asked if I could run a song idea by him,” says LeVox. “And we literally wrote ‘All I See’ in 20 minutes and laid down the vocals. It’s one of my favorite on this record.
The Ohio native points to a thesis line from the song that encapsulates what the pandemic was to him. Help me open my eyes Lord / So you’re all I see, he sings over the phone.
“I was so distracted with everything in life, and half of it didn’t matter. I was putting so much time, and energy, and effort into stuff that just meant nothing. This song helped me focus and get back on track.
“Life has been crazy, and if there was ever a moment for me to bring hope to my fans, I now was my time,” he says.
LeVox did not waste a moment of the time off the road. Beyond One on One, he completed another country project due later this year. On May 20, he announced an end-credits cut for a song “We Got Fight”—part of a broadly country soundtrack for Liam Neeson’s upcoming Netflix film The Ice Road. Gearing up to hit the road for a solo tour, the artist says fans can expect both Flatts hits and new content.
“I’m so sick of being in this house,” he laughs. “It’ll be weird to be back on stage without Jay and Joe, but it’s a new season and it’s time to roll.”
Listen to Gary LeVox’s debut EP One on One, here.