Interview: Cotter Hill

Cotter Hill at Belcourt Taps

Cotter Hill, an artist in it for the love of music and helping others in need.

Hometown: Cleveland, TN

Genre: Country, Pop Country

Influences: Michael Bolton, Kenny Rogers, Curtis Stigers, George Strait, Billy Currington, Gavin DeGraw

Favorite Venue: Belcourt Taps

Cotter Hill is a southern country boy from Southeast Tennessee. Cotter started learning the guitar at 12 years old. At age 17, he started singing, making him a great act when he played his first show. Having been a shy, introverted kid growing up, he worked hard to become the easily likable artist he is today. Since 19, Cotter has played in venues of all sizes in songwriter rounds and across the country on tour with Adairs Run.

What’s the story behind the tour with Adairs Run?

“I started touring with them through a mutual songwriter I wrote with. They needed a road manager and a merch manager. I started working that for 4 months and then we all started writing together. They offered me a spot to open for them. My favorite place was the Ampitheater in Virginia on March 25 of this year. It was an American Red Cross benefit for the flood victims.”

Was there anything in your life that influences you to help others in need?

“Almost 10 years ago, my nephew passed away at 4 months old from Leukemia, taking his life in 30 minutes. Ever since, my family has been big on St. Jude’s. The first show I performed at 19 was for our fundraiser. At that point, I realized I want to help families out. You gotta help somebody in need. There’s always someone struggling and it’s not their fault.”

What is your ultimate goal?

“Music for me is very heartfelt. I want to write songs people can relate to and have fun to. If they’re going through a hard time, I will have a song for them. I’ve always wanted to help people get through it. I want to encourage people and be a role model. I’m not all about being big and famous with number 1s. It’s not what I signed up to do, it’s just a bonus.”

What was your life like before pursuing music in Nashville?

“I went to college to be a Veterinarian. I had a job with a local vet and loved working there. But, I didn’t want to come home to my own dogs and that wasn’t fair. They [Yorkie and Golden Retreiver] are like my kids. So I dropped out of school and started working at a mental health hospital. I quit and moved to Nashville thinking ‘I deserve to do something I want to do’ so I moved here. I’ve had 3 jobs since moving here. I was a gardener, a tree cutter all winter, and now an apartment remodeler. When I’m not working or songwriting, I workout, hike, fish, and hang out with my dogs.”

Cotter Hill recently released his first single, ‘Sober Up‘, which will be part of his upcoming album. This song brings us to the feeling of drinking too much and wanting to sober up because of that one girl. You might have heard it when iHeart Radio spun this tune on the Homegrown Country show. Another song of Cotter’s called, ‘Forever Works’ is played continuously on his hometown radio station. You can listen to ‘Sober Up‘ anywhere online you listen to music.

“I put a lot of heart into the words. It’s nice to see the song fully done. All my songs are true songs and have my real experiences in them. When people who know the song or know me sing it when I’m playing out, it makes me feel good. As a musician, the feeling of accomplishment is everything. When people appreciate your music, you realize you did a good job and all the hard work is paying off. I get a breath of fresh air.”

What’s happening next for you?

“When we are closer to my album dropping, I’ll release more singles. The title track is ‘Better Man.’ I’ve gone through a lot of personal issues and breaking someone’s heart. I’m saying sorry in this song to her. Also on the album, ‘Raising Your Babies,’ the saddest song I have.”

Cotter Hill, Douglas Warren, Samuel Herb, are going on a summer tour, ARs and Mason Jars, hitting up Florida and Georgia. The first stop is Jacksonville, FL on July 27.

“It’s about as redneck as you can get. I’m excited for it. We area 3 piece solo tour. The purpose is to get music out there, have fun, and meet new people.”

What do you love about Belcourt Taps?

“Belcourt was the first place I played when I moved to Nashville. I performed 1 song with someone who I met up here. I had 2 songs written at that point. Ever since, it’s been my favorite place.”

Sorry ladies, he is not looking for a relationship right now.

“I think I need time for myself. It’s not fair for her to fully invest in me if I can’t fully invest in her. Right now I’m so caught up doing music and touring, it’s not fair for her to be hanging on the side. I’m not going to do anyone wrong and make them think they don’t matter to me. So, it’s just me and my dogs.”

 

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