Garth Brooks may have more planned for 2014 than he has let fans and the industry know. Brooks hasn’t been shy to reveal that seven is his lucky number, and since 2014 numerically adds up to that, the world could be in for a few big surprises throughout the year.
After surprising fans by releasing Blame It All On My Roots: Five Decades of Influences, an eight CD/DVD boxed set released on Thanksgiving Day exclusively through Walmart, and confirming a three year world tour starting this fall, the country megastar has referred to 2014 as “The Year of Sevens” in an email sent to subscribers on New Year’s Eve.
The singer writes, “Just a note to say ‘thank you’ for a wonderful finish to 2013. As we turn the page and begin ‘The Year of Sevens’, may your families be blessed with love, health, and happiness. Thank you for my life and the many blessings you have bestowed on me and my family over the years. Here’s to a GREAT 2014!!!! love, love, love, g”
“As we turn the page and begin ‘The Year of Sevens’, may your families be blessed with love, health, and happiness.”
What the full scope of “The Year of Sevens” entails is still unknown, but fans are not only excited for the tour but are also hoping for new music as well. However, Brooks recently told Country Aircheck that new music is not guaranteed at this point due to several factors, including not having a digital partner with iTunes and other digital outlets.
“Right now there are a lot of hurdles to climb, one of which is digital,” he says. “We don’t have a digital partner right now. I’ll never have a digital partner in iTunes as long as they keep the same rules they have now. I respect them; they’re friends of mine. They show me respect. They make me believe they’re friends of mine. But if they’re not going to change their ways, I’m not going to change mine. We have to figure out how we get new music to the people.”
Brooks owns the masters to all of his recordings and states he hasn’t allowed his music to be sold digitally because of the low royalty rates songwriters get with each download.
“It would be a shame to go in and create and then not be able to get it out to anybody,” he claims. “We’d love to do new music. But if the songwriters aren’t being taken care of, why are we creating? Everybody says, ‘It’s for the art.’ Don’t get me wrong, the music is everything. But if we don’t nurture and protect our songwriters the music is going to suffer, and will eventually disappear.”
Despite selling over 190,000 boxed sets within the first four days of release and it only being available through Walmart, Brooks continues, “I would love to take new music with us [on tour]. But if we can’t get this fixed, we’ll just go out and tour on the old stuff. And if people are cool with that, it’ll be great. They’re not making more time, you know, and the last time I toured it took us two-and-a-half hours just to get the songs we’ve already released. So, we have the material to go back out.”
Brooks has also stated in the past that his music won’t be available on iTunes as long as the company doesn’t offer variable album-only pricing in which Brooks favors because each album is a “reflection of who the artist is at that time” and should be consumed as a whole.
Country fans can’t imagine Garth Brooks returning to music full-time without new music, so it’s likely new music is planned and that his comments are just to hype up the demand more than it already is, even though it’s not really needed. Either way, fans can expect something huge between now and the tour, although Brooks has revealed very little details.
“[T]here is something that could be happening between now and the tour that might be the biggest thing I’ve ever tried to take on.”
“[T]here is something that could be happening between now and the tour that might be the biggest thing I’ve ever tried to take on,” Brooks says. “I’m excited. If it comes to fruition, and it looks like it’s going to, it will be the biggest thing I’ve ever tried to attempt. I’m really excited about it. It’ll be done right, it’ll be done quality. I’m in love with the idea and we just have to see if it’s going to happen.”
Whatever the “big” thing is, Brooks stated during his radio tour before Christmas that fans will know in either January or February. Many fans are speculating that Brooks will officially join social media and reinstate his Facebook and Twitter accounts, along with adding a YouTube channel, which weren’t available when Brooks retired from music full time in 2001. Other fans are hoping for a new album, a long awaited duets album with wife Trisha Yearwood and/or a duets CD with other artists, while some fans think a series of free concerts will be performed or that he will launch his own digital service via his website. Others have speculated that he will expand his Pearl Records label to other artists besides himself.
Like we did throughout all of 2013, we will inform you of the latest Garth Brooks news and headlines in 2014 and beyond. Stay tuned and thanks for reading!
Author: Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites.