Colby Acuff
Matthew Berinato

Colby Acuff Redefines the Country Music Landscape With 'Mountain Country Music' on 'Western White Pines'

In a bold move that marks a significant turning point in his career, emerging country artist Colby Acuff is releasing his highly anticipated major label debut album, Western White Pines on June 9. Driven by his unwavering determination and distinctive vision, Acuff aims to captivate audiences and leave an indelible mark on the country music scene in hopes of redefining the country music landscape. With influences from his roots in the mountains of Idaho and a commitment to authenticity, Acuff's album promises a fresh and unique sound that pays homage to the old school country vibe.

Acuff's journey to this major label debut has been shaped by his experiences as an independent artist.

"We were in independent space for three years, and it was great to us. But it is a hard road," Acuff tells Wide Open Country. "I mean, when everything is on your back, it can be extremely overwhelming. So I'm very thankful, very grateful, for everybody that's worked on this project, and just on the brand and on the business and with me, to get this record out."

With Western White Pines, Acuff offers a fresh sound that combines undeniably country elements with a unique twist, drawing inspiration from his hometown, Coeur d'Alene, ID —- a region that has not often been represented in country music.

"It's gonna be a little different," Acuff says. "I always hope that we reach new audiences and new fans. I just think with this release, hopefully the scope will be a little bit wider."

Western White Pines comprises 10 tracks, most of which Acuff wrote alone.

"The stories going into this record, it's all about where I'm from, who I am, how I was raised, you know, the struggles of getting here."

Acuff's intention is to transport listeners to the foothills of the Rockies, painting a vivid picture of the mountain country music that he feels has been underrepresented in the genre.

"This is mountain country music, something that I don't feel like has been represented." Acuff says. "There's western music, for sure. There's the 'cowboy life' music, there's southern country music, there's Southern rock, there's a lot of stuff, but this town — it's just different out here. And I feel like I've put it upon myself to be authentic. What you see is what you get."

The album promises to intricately weave stories of his upbringing, struggles and triumphs into each track. Acuff credits producer Eddie Spear (who also produced Zach Bryan's American Heartbreak) for playing a pivotal role in shaping the sound and vision he wanted to portray on the forthcoming album.

"No matter what, you always want to make sure that you and your producer are very close. Eddie and I hit it off immediately," Acuff says. "He's an absolute genius in the studio, which helps a ton. He hears what I have to say and makes the sound tailored to what I am and who I am. Truly, in my mind, he's the best."

Looking ahead, Acuff envisions collaborating with artists he has grown to admire and bonded with throughout his journey and previous tours. His experiences touring with established acts like Lainey Wilson and 49 Winchester, as well as his plans for upcoming tours with Flatland Cavalry and other grassroots artists, have been transformative.

"They've really shown me true kindness and what it really means to be a headlining act," Acuff says. "And to bring support on, and to really take the time to meet the people, be a part of their camp. That kind of stuff goes a lot farther than, you know, like, how do they change our set? Or how do they shape me as a performer? It's really just, how do they shape me as a person?"

"I think we have a lot to give, I think we have a lot on the table and a lot to offer to people, especially people seeking something new," Acuff continues. "This record will be something that a lot of people haven't heard before, it's undoubtedly country, but it's definitely a different sound."

As the release approaches, Acuff hopes it will be an album that listeners can deeply connect with. "I really just want people to connect with me personally. I want people to listen to the record, not just hear it. I want them to attach themselves to the sounds. I just hope they love it. That's all you can ever ask for."

Following the release of Western White Pines, Acuff plans to embark on a countrywide tour, culminating in a final show on Dec. 16th with Lainey Wilson in Las Vegas. This tour will allow fans to experience the energy and power of Acuff's live performances firsthand. To stay updated on tour dates and locations, visit here.

READ MORE: 'Yellowstone' Music Supervisor Shares the Secrets Behind the Show's Kick-Ass Country Soundtrack