Garth Brooks on new book, lip synching

Garth Brooks on new book, lip synching


AP Music Writer


Garth Brooks says he’s happy to share the first of five anthologies he created with his fans while he’s still alive and kicking.

“Every artist seems to wait till they’re dead, and I just don’t know how you enjoy that. Or everybody is so old that nobody can remember the stories, it just gets kind of all muddied up,” he said in an interview this week. “So just to be able to do this while you’re up and running really was cool.”

The 55-year-old singer released “Garth Brooks: The Anthology Part 1 The First Five Years” on Tuesday. It includes a book written by Brooks, five albums – including songs never-heard before – and behind-the-scenes stories focused on the years 1989-1994.

Brooks plans to release the other four anthologies in the next few years. The multi-platinum singer, who is on tour, talked about the anthology, his decision to lip sync at last week’s Country Music Association Awards and more.

Q. What was going through your mind when you looked at the first five years of your career?

A. To be honest, I was scared because I’ve told these stories my whole career. Now I was scared that I’d have to go back and find, “Well maybe that wasn’t exactly how it happened. Maybe we were stretching the truth a little bit or whatever to make a good story.” And then what I love is you go back – there it is; there is a first take of “Much Too Young” and that whole thing of you’re looking at all these guys who know what they’re doing and you don’t know what you’re doing.

Q. What would the Garth Brooks today tell the 1989 version of Garth?

A. What I’ll tell him is, “You’re just so full of [expletive], you’re scared to death and you’re running and you’re praying to God that each day you don’t kill yourself,” you know. But I think that’s all young artists. We got a kid named Mitch Rossell with us right now (on tour), sweetest kid on the planet, but ... I am telling you, he’s so far in the dark simply because the greatest lessons in life cannot be taught. You have to learn them. So what we do to him is the same thing everybody did to me – they run alongside me with their arms trying to keep me from falling.

Q. You’ve performed live for years, so why did you decide to lip sync at the CMAs?

A. I think I know Tacoma really well, that was five nights (of shows there) three days right before (the CMAs), it’s an indoor football stadium, so you go in there and you’re just fighting your guts out to try and reach the person that’s in the very back ... it’s real physical and real demanding but very rewarding. And then I’ve got seven nights in Spokane the day after the CMAs. So the week before Tacoma we did a (pre-recorded) track just for the CMAs, and then decided we’d do a game-time decision, and when it was game time it wasn’t a hard decision for me to make at all.

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