Uncle Kraker was first introduced to the country music community through a duet with Kenny Chesney in 2004 for “When the Sun Goes Down.” Country music fans gave the duet a good reception which led the single to peak at number 1 on the Hot Country Songs chart and went on to secure the 4th spot on the year-end chart. Even to this day, the song gets frequently played at pool parties all over the country.
“When the Sun Goes Down” was not the only one that Kraker and Chesney performed together. While “When the Sun Goes Down” was gaining popularity, the duo teamed up to do summer tours. In one of the shows, Kraker and Chesney again showcased another hit, Uncle Kraker’s “Drift Away”
You probably might not have heard yet Kracker’s version of “Drift Away,” but you must have definitely heard of the song before. “Drift Away” was originally recorded by John Henry Kutz for his 1972 album “Reunion.” It was also recorded, the following year, by soul singer Doble Gray which went on to become the biggest hit of his career.
In 2003, Uncle Kracker recorded “Drift Away “ featuring Gray. The duo took the song to the top spot of the Adult Contemporary Chart. Their own rendition made a record-breaking 28 weeks on top of the charts.
Kraker & Chesney Duet
When the duo performed “Drift Away” in a live performance, you could see how excited everyone was to see Kracker and Chesney sing their hit cover.
The Knoxville crowd definitely loved “Drift Away.” Obviously acquainted with the song, the audience could not help but sing along to the tune of the hit. And if you’re curious about what really was the atmosphere like, go ahead and watch the throwback recording. You might just find yourself singing along.
Each to His Own But Still Buddies
After their wonderful run as a duo, Uncle Kracker would go on and ride the momentum. He released “Smile,” which was from his album “Happy Hour.” In 2009, the song became a multi-platinum hit and reached the Top 10 on both the country and the pop charts. Following his hit single, he then again released a duet with Kid Rock whom he first worked with as the singer’s DJ. Their song “Good to Be Me” reached the top 30 in both genres.
Much like Kid Rock, Uncle Kraker, though known to most people as a rock star, found himself a welcomed member of the country music community. And like his buddy, Chesney, Uncle Kraker has also sold-out shows across the country. For his recordings, he works closely with Nashville songwriters.
Similarly, Kenny Chesney went on with his award-winning career. After his successful collaboration with Uncle Kracker, Chesney received a Triple-Crown Award as presented by the Academy of Country Music. This was a combination of his 1997 New Male Vocalist of the Year award, 2003 Top Male Vocalist award, and “The Road and the Radio,” Chesney’s album that had five singles which made it all to number one.
In 2018, Chesney ended his contract with Sony Music Nashville and signed a new deal with Warner Bros. Records Nashville. Chesney would then release his debut single with Warner titled “Songs for the Saints.” He also announced in March 2020 that he would be releasing a new album titled “Here and Now.” The album would feature the single, “Tip of My Tongue” the lead-off single which was released mid last year. This became Chesney’s 16th top 10 albums on Billboard top 200.
Kenney Chesney and Uncle Kracker’s solo careers have been rewarding to both. This gives their music fans a lot to look forward to in the years to come.