For country singer Eric Church, 2012 has been the year of the “Chief.”
That’s the title of Church’s third album, the one that gave Church a complete commercial breakthrough. The disc has sold more than a million copies, as have two of its singles, “Drink in My Hand” and “Springsteen.”
Along with the sales success has come award nominations – 12 from the Country Music Academy alone, and a Grammy nomination for best country album.
People are paying attention these days. But Church, who brings his act to Roanoke Civic Center on Thursday, is not that far removed from the days when he felt like no one knew who he was.
“There were a lot of years that we had 14 people on a tour bus, and just traveling up and down the road, and not making any money and barely making rent,” Church, 35, recalled in a phone call earlier this month. “I’ve had many of those years.
“So to have a year like this … has allowed us to travel a little bit differently, and my family can come out with me. We can go up and down the road a little more comfortably, especially for a baby. I’m just very thankful.”