Rising star Levi Hummon warmly remembers that his father, Grammy-winning country songwriter Marcus Hummon, raised him with a trilogy of rules for a well-rounded life. “He wanted you to play a sport and do an art,” the younger Hummon explains. “And you had to do well in school.” As it turns out, Hummon never caught on with a professional sports team. But he’s definitely on a big-league roll with his singing and songwriting.
Hummon recently released his latest single “Drop of Us,” has an EP titled “Patient” under his belt and spent most of this past spring and summer on tour with Hunter Hayes. He also played several major country festivals during the year, including Country LakeShake in Chicago and Faster Horses in Michigan. This fall, Hummon graduates to the next level with his first-ever headlining tour, kicking off October 2. “That’s going to be interesting,” Hummon says with a smile. “I’ll be playing bigger rooms, which is great for us.” Hummon got a taste of one of those larger venues when he played a September show at Nashville’s famed rock venue, the Exit/In. “I grew up going to shows there,” Hummon recalls. And speaking of hallowed halls, Hummon has also made a number of appearances on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry.
Rock and country loom as his major influences. As a youngster, the Nashville-born-and-raised Hummon listened to acts like The White Stripes and Outkast. But when he picked up the guitar to write, the tunes came out strictly in the country storytelling vein, partly due to his dad’s influence. If you’re not totally familiar with Levi’s father Marcus Hummon, his top works include “Bless the Broken Road” by Rascal Flatts, the Dixie Chicks’ “Cowboy Take me Away” and Tim McGraw’s “One of These Days,” among others. “I can remember going to the studio with my dad when I was growing up,” says the younger Hummon. “Those studio sessions really stick out to me.”
At one point in his life, though, Hummon was more captivated by the visual arts than music. “Painting was actually my first love,” he smiles. “But lyrics and melodies kind of took over and became my new canvass. That was the most honest expression of myself.” Hummon made a strong connection with “Drop of Us,” which he wrote with his good pals Jimmy Robbins and Eric Arjes. He felt that he had a relatable song on his hands almost from the get-go.
As Hummon explains, “Drop of Us” was hatched after he received word of the Hunter Hayes tour. “We found out that we were going on the tour in November and it was going to start in April,” he begins. “I listened to his first album and he had all those heavy up-tempo tunes. I thought that I’d like a song that could complement those. I got together with two of my buddies and we just wrote the biggest, up-tempo song that we could think of. I had the idea of ‘I don’t want to waste a drop’ and Jimmy was like, ‘Drop of us.’ You know, like, I don’t want to waste a moment of us. I knew it was special,” Hummon adds with a grin, “because I could not get that chorus out of my head, even four or five days after we wrote it. We added it to our live set and it really stood out on the Hunter tour. By the third chorus, everybody’s singing along. So, I figured we should record this.”
By the time he hits the road for his headlining tour, Hummon plans to have some surprises in store for the fans. “I’m constantly working on new music, so we should have a ton of new stuff coming out,” he says. “I think I learned a lot from touring with Hunter and that definitely made me a better artist from a performance standpoint. So, I’m thrilled to be a part of all this.”
Levi Hummon’s single “Drop of Us” is available now.