Eric Church Debuts a Song Inspired by His Father During Surprise Grand Ole Opry Appearance [Watch]
The country star was on hand to help celebrate his longtime friend Ashley McBryde's official induction into the Opry. The two joined forces for a rendition of her track "Bible and a .44," which the pair previously performed together during Church's 2017 Holding My Own Tour. Later in the show, he reemerged on stage with his acoustic guitar in hand for an unannounced solo mini-set.
"Man, what a night," he reflected before telling the crowd how he wanted to play "a new song nobody's heard."
The unreleased tune pays homage to Eric's father, Ken Church, and uses lyrical imagery to examine all their similarities, including habits that have rubbed off on him over the years.
"I wear jeans and boots, I drink not-light beer, sometimes I tell the truth or what you want to hear," he sang. "When I'm dealing cards, I always keep one hid. I like to buy used cars, cause my dad did."
After a round of applause from the crowd, Church paused again to reflect on memories of riding with his father inside his beige Pontiac before performing his Desperate Man cut "Hippie Radio."
"I remember as he would play songs, I can remember being in the backseat listening to him sing, and I would honestly bounce across that bench seat, window to window, playing air guitar and drums," Church explained. "And as I got older... I have two boys, and as I was playing [them] songs, I found that it was the same songs my dad used to play me."
It's unclear if Church has plans to release a new album or tour in 2023, but the country star has plenty of new projects already lined up. Last week, he unveiled further details about his upcoming bar on Nashville's Lower Broadway. Chief's is expected to open sometime next year alongside a string of bars featuring the namesakes of fellow country stars Blake Shelton, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Dierks Bentley and Jason Aldean.
In November, Church also announced the launch of Solid Entertainment, a new partnership between the star and his longtime manager, John Peets. The company will oversee the operations of the country star's companies and brands, including Chief's, his SiriusXM channel, Outsiders Radio, and his fan club, the Church Choir.