Easton Corbin isn’t big on taking time off. He’s playing at 7 Flags Event Center in Clive four days before Christmas, and he’s got shows scheduled up until Sunday.
If most of his audience didn’t have other plans (and his crew didn’t want a few days with their families), Corbin would probably keep on playing.
“Christmas ain’t until the 25th, so I’m trying to get out there and work as much as possible,” Corbin said during a phone interview. “If I had a bunch of time off, I would get antsy to get back on the road. So we’ll take a little time off, but not a lot.”
Iowa fans last saw Corbin opening for a sold-out The Band Perry show at the Iowa State Fair in August. While the Perry siblings have more of a pop-friendly sound, Corbin is a little more country. In fact, that was the name of his first No. 1 song ( “A Little More Country Than That”). He followed that up with “Roll With It” (both off his 2010 debut “Easton Corbin”).
Corbin’s sophomore album, “All Over The Road,” came out in September and features the top 10 hit “Lovin’ You is Fun.”
Corbin is cut from a cloth that’s less Taylor Swift and more Merle Haggard, George Jones or Keith Whitley.
Whitley is a name casual country fans will be less familiar with, but the singer was a big influence on Corbin. Whitley had a string of hits in the ‘80s, including “Don’t Close Your Eyes,” “I’m No Stranger to the Rain” and “It Ain’t Nothin’.” Whitley drank himself to death in 1989 at the age of 34.
“When you love country and listen to George and Merle and you’re finding that style, you can’t help but stumble over (Whitley’s) music,” Corbin said. “My sister and dad used to listen to that stuff, so I would hear the records when I was a kid. He had a great, timeless voice. I love the way he phrased his songs, it was one of a kind.”
For his two albums, Corbin was looking for a similar timeless sound. He found a formula that worked on “Easton Corbin” and didn’t try to deviate from it too much with “All Over The Road.” Corbin wants his songs to be fun (except when they’re sad), honest and to say something.
Corbin doesn’t dislike the poppier side of country, it’s just not what he’s doing. He enjoyed his time with The Band Perry, but he’s also looking forward to going on tour with Blake Shelton (who Corbin referred to as “one of the countriest things out there right now”) in the new year.
“Pop is just how people sound. It’s what they do and that’s OK,” Corbin said. “Country’s got a lot of different voices. If it’s what you do and it’s real, there’s nothing wrong with that. Country is all about being real.”
When: 8 p.m. Friday
Where: 7 Flags Event Center, 2100 N.W. 100th St., Clive
Cost: $20 in advance, $27 day of show