Chase Bryant is gearing up to launch his first new music in more than three years, but this is no ordinary country comeback. In a startling new revelation, the “Little Bit of You” hit maker has opened up about attempting suicide in 2018, and the reason he’s still here.
Speaking with People and releasing a powerful video about what happened, the Texas native has revealed a struggle with anxiety and depression that almost claimed his life. After scoring two Top 10 hits at country radio in 2014-15 (“Take It on Back” and “Little Bit of You”), the guitar phenom was touring with megastars and by all accounts, seemed headed toward achieving his dreams. But inside he was in turmoil, Bryant says, feeling like he was forcing himself to be the type of artist he was not. The pain came to a head at a Nashville gas station, where Bryant sat in his truck with a loaded .357 revolver.
“At that moment, I begged for somebody to listen and I begged for somebody to just come down and help me,” Bryant confesses to People, also providing another perspective in the video clip. “I just screamed out the word ‘sorry’ as loud as I could, and I pulled the trigger… and here I am.”
Bryant swears he loaded six bullets into the gun. But when he opened it up to look, only five were there. He was changed in that moment and began turning his life around, Bryant says, seeking treatment to overcome his demons and vowing to live differently.
“I was chasing success… I wasn’t chasing happiness,” he explains. “I was trying to be something I wasn’t. I was just being who they told me to be. I was doing what they told me to do, and that was somewhat easy at the time because everybody was filling me with this gratification, and I never really had had that from anybody. I never felt that feeling.”
On his upcoming album, Upbringing, Bryant says he’s finally found that feeling. The project will mark his debut full-length recording project, and was produced by rootsy veteran, Jon Randall. And although not much is known about the new music’s direction, it’s likely to stand in opposition to Bryant’s polished early hits.
“We went to Austin, Texas and we made this record, and it was like putting on my blue jeans and a T-shirt and walking into a studio and not knowing where I was going,” the singer-songwriter says. “[I was] just following wherever my heart was going.”
Indeed, the project’s first single and title track, “Upbringing,” will be released this Friday (February 26), and Chase Bryant delivered a preview sample in his video message to fans. Seated in a chair and dressed casual in a white T-shirt and jeans, he played through a section of the track in solo-acoustic style — showing off a howling country-pride anthem which name checks John Mellencamp’s “Jack and Diane,” and features a singalong vocal hook. Bryant plans to reveal more details about his comeback album soon, and tells fans he’s grateful to finally be in a good place, both personally and professionally.
“Now I’m not scared,” he tells People. “I realized everything happens for a reason. There is a purpose. It’s like God said, ‘Here’s your second chance.’ It’s the best second chance I’ve ever been given. Now I get to, hopefully, one day have kids of my own and raise a family of my own. And there’s a lot to be thankful for. And I’m just thankful that I made it out of that night.”