Story Behind the Song: The Swon Brothers (feat. Vince Gill), ‘Travelin’ On’
The Swon Brothers share a home state (Oklahoma) with Vince Gill, and that connection has since blossomed into a beautiful musical friendship. Read on as the brother duo recounts how they wrote their new song, "Travelin' On," as well as how they enlisted Gill to help them sing it.
Colton Swon: One night on the bus, we were all writing -- we took a couple friends on the road to write with us -- and everybody was just kinda burnt out. So we were like, "Eh, let's just give it a break."
I stayed back in the room. I was like, "I know it's a waltz-type slow song. It's not really the kind of jam you wanna write on a bus, but I just got to writing some lines that were very honest. It just came out. [It's] one of the most honest, genuine songs we've ever put out. Musically, lyrically. It was just one of those things.
There's a line at the end of the song where we talk about -- we're on the road 24/7, and our parents live in Oklahoma, and we live in Nashville now. So there's months that go by that we don't see them. It seems like every time we see them now -- not to be disrespectful -- but they look a little older. Time flies. So that's how that song was written. Just four dudes being really honest with each other.
Zach Swon: And [Vince Gill], he's been super cool to us for many years. He sent us a video right after we finished The Voice and came home. We got this award called the Rising Star Award, for the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame, and Vince had been inducted into the Hall of Fame. He couldn't be there at the shindig, but he sent us a "Congratulations" video. That was the first contact we had.
And throughout the year, he's guided me on, like, guitar purchases, and we've talked music, and it's been really cool. Another thing that I think is awesome is that he's a guy you'll send a text to and immediately you'll get a phone call from him. He doesn't text as far as I know. He's never texted me back, but he always calls, and wants to talk about whatever it was that I said.
So that being said, I had his phone number, I called him and I said, "This is a long shot, but we've written this song that we think you would sound awesome playing or singing, or whatever you want to do. And he was like, "I'm in. Anything for an Okie."
And the rest is history. He's been really cool.