Eric Church is the subject of the Country Music Hall Of fame’s newest exhibition, “Eric Church: Country Heart, Restless Soul,” presented by Gibson. The exhibit will chronicle Church’s unique path to stardom. The exhibit, which opens July 13 and runs through June 2024, is included with museum admission.
Kyle Young, CEO of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, said in a statement, “Eric Church has done it his way completely. His steadfast artistic vision and authenticity resonate deeply with audiences, and he continues to serve as an important collaborator and renegade role model for generations of country music artists.”
Examples of items to be displayed include:
- The Harmony H-303 three-quarter-size acoustic guitar that belonged to Church when he was a child.
- Ray-Ban Aviator Mirror sunglasses worn by Church onstage.
- The Von Dutch trucker hat Church bought at a Mississippi truck stop in the late 2000s and began wearing onstage.
- The outfit worn by Church on the album cover of The Outsiders and at the CMA Awards in 2013, which includes a Rogue two-tone leather jacket, John Varvatos shirt, and Diesel jeans.
- A sculpture made from vinyl records of various sizes, which replicates the soundwave of Church’s recording of “Record Year” and was used as a prop in the 2016 music video for the song.
- A Gibson Eric Church Hummingbird Dark guitar. Church contributed to the design of the limited-edition guitar and used it on his “Double Down Tour” (2019).
- The Tom Ford purple suede jacket that Church wore when he and Jazmine Sullivan sang the national anthem at Super Bowl LV at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida, in 2021.
Church recently celebrated the tenth anniversary of the release of his 2013 album Caught In The Act. The live album was captured in 2012 at the Tivoli Theater in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
Eric said recording the album reminded him of when he played the bars and clubs before getting his record deal. He told us, “We kinda left the lights up, so you could kinda look around and see everybody. You could see the emotion; you could see the faces; you could hear ’em. I felt at home. I felt like I was back in those bars and clubs that I love so much, and theaters, that I’ve had that interaction, that connection with individual people.”
The title, Caught in the Act, perfectly describes how they recorded the album. Church explained, “We wanted it to be as loose as it could be because that’s what our career has been. It’s been real. I remember, like an hour before that first show of myself and the band, we pulled out a sheet of paper, took out a pen, and went down and made a set list. We didn’t know what we were starting with. We didn’t know what we were finishing with.”
He added, “We just went down and said, ‘Hey, what do you want to play? What do you want to play? Hey, man, remember, we haven’t played this in a long time.’ There were songs that I thought there’s no way I’ll get through that, but our sentiment was let’s try it. Let’s go for it.”