Randy Rogers, Wade Bowen talk ‘Hold My Beer, Vol. 2,’ how the fan experience might change moving forward

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It’s been more than two months since country crooners Randy Rogers and Wade Bowen announced “Hold My Beer, Vol. 2,” the 12-song follow-up to their 2015 LP, “Hold My Beer, Vol. 1.”

Now, the long-awaited project is here and while the world has changed since its announcement, one constant is the immediate and emotional connection music continues to have on folks despite the current novel coronavirus pandemic.

The Texas duo spoke with Fox News and admitted that while the lockdown is putting a damper on their incredibly hectic individual traveling and touring schedules, they’ve come to appreciate the ample time they each get to spend with their respective families as well as the skills they’re each picking up -- or perfecting -- given the extra time on their hands.

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“For guys like us that are always on the road, this has been a good change of pace,” Bowen said, adding that he’s using his time taking guitar lessons and sharpening up his studio and broadcasting work.

“I’m also becoming pretty good in the yard and in the kitchen," he added. "I’ve always loved to cook, so this has given me plenty of time to try new stuff. Next on my cooking list is to make homemade chicken piccata!”

(Joshua Black Wilkins)

But no matter which way you slice it, the bottom line is: These two men simply live for performing and making music. Here’s everything you need to know about country music’s next act:

Fox News: Can you talk a little about your journey getting to this point in your careers?

Randy: The Randy Rogers Band was started in 2000. Back then, we would roll around in an ‘88 Chevy Suburban. We started playing the famous Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos, Texas, and slowly built a following. It’s been a rollercoaster ever since. Wade and I met through the Texas scene, became great friends, and very quickly realized that the music we make together is totally different than what we put out individually. We started doing an annual acoustic tour together about a decade ago, and the rest is history.

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Wade: Well, I’ve been doing this career for over 20 years now, so that’s a lot of hard work to maintain enough success during those years to keep it up. I’ve never been one to shy away from hard work. I started in my college days in Lubbock, Texas, in a band called West 84. We slowly transitioned out of that into just Wade Bowen and never looked back. The music business can be very tough but so rewarding as well. I’ve been very blessed in my career so far, that’s for sure.

(Courtesy of Sweet Talk)

Fox News: What has happened in the five years since “Hold My Beer, Vol. 1” debuted that warrants an album of the same name or made you want to continue the series?

Randy: We had it in mind all along to do Vol. 2, but both of our bands’ touring schedules make it very hard to get into the studio. People don’t realize how much we’re actually out on the road – well over 150 dates a year. We also each put out our own individual records during that time, and that requires some spacing too. Time flies.

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Wade: We have crazy schedules already, when you think about having and finding time to do albums together. We are both slammed with our individual careers, and that sometimes makes it tough to squeeze in the "Hold My Beer" stuff – but I’m so glad we do because I think it’s a huge release for us and something we both truly believe in… We also don’t want to wear out our welcome. When you release albums on the independent level, it can take a little longer for the audience to hear it. We’ve seen the tour and Vol. 1 continue to grow in popularity, so that’s a good reason not to rush it.

(Joshua Black Wilkins)

Fox News: When you work so closely together, how do you guys go about handling creative disagreements?

Randy: Wade has a great vision for all things “Hold My Beer” related. I usually follow his lead. We have also been friends for almost 20 years, and we have a strong sense of what we want HMB to be about. The disagreements are actually few and far between.

Wade: Randy and I just get along. We know each other’s roles in this and don’t want to step on each other to experience success. We know that this whole thing is built off friendship, so we do all we can to keep that friendship intact

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Fox News:  What’s been the biggest personal achievement each of you has accomplished?

Randy: For me, it’s my family. I’m a #GirlDad and watching these little ones grow up is the greatest joy of my life.

Wade: My biggest achievements, by far, are my two amazing sons. I just love the kindness and love they have in their hearts and the talent they show in everything they do. They care about people and love family, and just being around them every day makes me not only be a better dad, but also a better human being, in general. We learn way more from our kids than they learn from us. There’s honestly nothing better.

I think we will adapt. Music heals, and I firmly believe we will all find a way to let it do just that.

— Randy Rogers on how the coronavirus may impact the fan's experience.

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Fox News: What’s an interesting fact a stranger would be surprised to learn about each of you?

Randy: I am a preacher’s son.

Wade: I can’t play golf very well anymore, but I can still whoop Randy’s butt. I also am the son of an electrician. My grandfather started Bowen Electric in Waco, Texas, in 1955. That’s probably what I would be doing if music didn’t find me.

Fox News: What was a career-defining moment for you when you knew your life and/or careers would likely never be the same?

Randy: When Randy Rogers Band was signed to Universal Records after independently releasing our first two records – receiving that vote of confidence from such a great label was humbling and just validated all our hard work.

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Wade: I’m not sure that I’ve really had that in my mind. I’m the type of person that never settles and is always looking to improve, so I’m never satisfied with any amount of success. I’ve played the Ryman and Red Rocks, thanks to Randy and his band, so I’ve gotten to cross those off my bucket list but I still feel like I’ve got a lot left in the tank.

Fox News: How do you think the fan experience might change for you, given the new normal and the idea that having those personal moments with fans might be different going forward?

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Randy: I think we will adapt. Music heals, and I firmly believe we will all find a way to let it do just that.

Wade: Fans will always be fans, as long as we keep caring. If I’ve learned anything from all of this, it’s that never once, throughout any of this struggle, have people stopped asking for the music. That’s pretty unbelievable, if you think about it. We are lucky to do what we do with our lives, and I honestly believe no matter what happens, those like us – that truly love music – will always find a way to have those personal moments with our fans.