"I played a show where they didn't have the sound wired correctly," Chris told The Boot and other reporters at a recent media event. "My front-of-house guy spent all day stripping wires and plugging into amps. We got on stage and instead of actual lighting, they had a Party City light tree set up on the stage. We probably sold 15 tickets ... this was after I had my (record) deal. There were other people walking around in the bar, drinking, staring at us like, 'Would you please shut up?'"
Unfortunately for Chris, the troubles didn't stop there. "About halfway through the show, half of the power went off on stage, so all of a sudden it was vocal and drums really loud, and nothing else. My guitar player is trying to unplug and plug his guitar back in and figure out what the hell just happened."
Things have improved considerably for the hitmaker since then. He recently sold out a show at Nashville's Ryman Auditorium, and will begin his 2013 trek with a sold-out concert at Joe's Pub in Chicago. Still, he isn't about to let that success go to his head. "It feels good to hear we sold out the Ryman and we sold out [Joe's Pub]. I'll never forget playing the acoustic shows and trying to figure out who I was, trying to figure out what worked in front of a crowd. Hopefully, I can keep building on that for a long long time. There's obviously stuff I want to do beyond what we're doing right now. It's a big moment for me. I feel like I've said 'cool' and 'exciting' and 'big' about 4,000 times, but it is. This is one of those seminal moments that I've marked down and checked off my bucket list. It's a really exciting time."
Chris will follow his gig at Joe's Pub with stops in Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin, with Thomas Rhett and Joanna Smith serving as his opening acts. Keep track of his upcoming shows here.