Clayton Anderson is an up-and-coming country singer, currently tackling the Midwest tour by tour. Anderson recently visited Blo-No to share some of his talent with the community.
Anderson, 28, graduated from Indiana University with a degree in business marketing, without any intentions to pursue country singing as a career. Originally from a small town in southern Indiana, Anderson worked for a home mortgage company and did some landscaping out of college.
In 2008, country star Kenny Chesney put out a Next Big Star Competition, and a customer that Anderson worked for told him he should try out. Anderson quit his job and decided to take a chance with the contest. “I didn’t wanna look back and be a grumpy old man and say ‘I wish I would have given that a shot.’”
Just two weeks after Anderson quit his job, the business crashed.
Anderson won the competition in 2008 and it sparked his country singing career. He has since then moved to Nashville, Tennessee and is working to promote his music while he tours around the Midwest.
While his family was worried at first, they are now helping Anderson promote his music and sell merchandise, and his parents come to shows whenever they can.
Although no one in his immediate family sings or plays an instrument, his family has always been music oriented.
Anderson never really planned to play in college and only used to do performances for fun.
“We just played at frat parties and then started playing at some bars at Indiana University and we didn’t really take our shows very seriously.”
Anderson was a member of the Fraternity Delta Tau Delta at Indiana, giving him opportunities to have performances in college. Anderson did find that playing for big crowds in college taught him how to work a crowd and keep people interested during performances, along with other small things that he has carried into his career today.
Anderson recently performed at the Castle Theatre. His show was attended by many ISU students.
Sophomore Sara Dalan went to the concert and got the chance to hold his microphone while he sang her favorite song, “Hot Mess”.
“Clayton Anderson is so down to earth. He made it super fun because he was interacting with everyone in the audience,” Dalan said.
The night before the show, Anderson visited sorority houses on campus to perform and get to know the student body. The houses were tweeting for him to stop by and for the rest of the evening, social media was buzzing about his performances.
Anderson sings a variety of songs, many of which he has written himself.
“The last year and a half I have just been writing like crazy,” Anderson said. “Nashville is a co-writing town where you get together with other people, which can be very intimidating and awkward and uncomfortable. But after a while, you start to get the hang of it and figure out what you’re really good at and you match up and work with other guys. It just happens.”
His new album will be out in February and Anderson has written nearly every song on the album.
“I’m excited about that, it’s kind of something different,” he said.
Anderson said the hardest part is getting on the radio, because he is not signed with a major label. He really relies on the fans to help get the word out there.
“If you like my music then I hope you tell people about it on Facebook and Twitter. Heck, listen to it on Spotify and share it with your friends. You can see it’s paid off because more and more people keep showing up to shows.”
He will be performing Feb. 2 in Chicago at Joe’s Bar in Lincoln Park. Tickets are on sale and you must be 21 and over to go. If you missed his performance at The Castle, don’t worry because he plans to come back to the area before the end of next semester.
More information about Clayton Anderson can be found on his website, Claytonadersonofficial.com and you can find his music there, as well as on iTunes, and Spotify. By following Andersdon on Twitter and Facebook, you can stay updated on where he will be touring next, and more information about his soon-to-be-released album.