Warren Zeiders
David McClister

Warren Zeiders, TikTok Breakout Turned Headliner, Embraces Vulnerability on New Album: 'I'm a Dude Full of Emotion'

"The overarching theme is to let people know they're not alone."

Every once in a neon moon, a star materializes seemingly out of nowhere and transcends into the spotlight of rapid success. Warren Zeiders, a remarkable 24-year-old singer-songwriter, has already made his mark in the music world with his unique country-rock sound, propelled by his viral TikTok success with a cover of Chris Stapleton's "Tennessee Whiskey" and the album that followed, appropriately named Ride the Lightning. With the release of his newest album, Pretty Little Poison, Warren has already solidified his position as Nashville's newest headliner.

Hailing from Hershey, Pennsylvania with a background as a college athlete, Warren is no stranger to "mental toughness" and the discipline needed for handling high-pressure scenarios. Serving as a guide through his sudden and newfound fame, he balances it all with four pillars to live by: Faith, family, friends and athletics.

"Having rituals, habits, and things set in place to build me up and form me for this fast-paced rise [is important.] It could tear you up if you're not [disciplined]," Warren tells Wide Open Country. "It's having good people around you. It's having a great label, great manager, great family around me - having all that there keeps me sane."

Warren is making waves that are reaching far beyond the realm of the expected. His first national tour sold out in just 72 hours, he's already made his debut at the Grand Ole Opry and he's set to perform at the historical Ryman Auditorium in October later this year.

"Nothing in this life is deserved rather than earned... I doubled down and put everything I had into this," he says. "And I think that it rings true and everything's coming into existence and everything's coming into fruition."

All the successes, for him, are the result of hard work, the support of fans and a higher power.

"Seeing my fans show up in the masses in such widespread support for me, all I can say is that I'm not deserving of the position I'm in, I'm just nothing but blessed," Zeiders says.

Having recently risen to prominence with his album Ride the Lightning, Zeiders is already seeing success with the release of Pretty Little Poison. At the heart of the album lies the concept of the "faceless cowgirl," symbolizing the numerous captivating yet elusive characters we encounter throughout our lives.

Warren's favorite from Pretty Little Poison is unsurprisingly the title track itself.

"I think I would be a moron if I said that my favorite song wasn't 'Pretty Little Poison,' just seeing how widespread it's gone and how many people have connected and resonated with it," Zeiders says.

In the music video for the title track, he intentionally keeps the woman's face hidden, inviting listeners to project their own stories onto the narrative.

"There's numerous faceless cowgirls along the way for these songs," Zeiders explains, underscoring the album's universal appeal.

"There's things in life that are just too good to say no to and they're tempting and we know they're bad for us, but we somehow just can't find a way to say no to them."

The record explores themes of love and the myriad of emotions that come with it.

"The [overarching] theme is to let people know they're not alone and that their emotions are valid," he says. "And I'm a dude full of emotion."

However, another song that holds deep emotional roots for him is "Love You Leaving." He revealed that it was one of the hardest songs he ever had to write, as it draws from a deeply personal experience.

"I think that it's a blessing and a curse. There's the good, the bad, the ugly," he says. "I think I really opened up with this record, opened up about myself emotionally, and I'm just excited to let people in."

Recalling his experience working with artists such as Eric Paslay and Randy Montana, Warren says, "I've found people along the way who understand me, understand where I want to go... They can pull the ideas out of me."

For him, each song deserves a unique approach, and finding co-writers who can connect with his ideas is vital in his song-writing process.

"You'll notice a lot of the same names recurring on each and every song because that's where I was finding the most luck," he adds.

Working with producers Ross Copperman and Bart Butler proved to be an excellent decision for Zeiders. He acknowledges that each producer brought their own unique viewpoint and flavor to the album, making it cohesive yet diverse.

"Those two dudes... are super down to earth and [offer] two different vibes," he says. "I was super pumped to work with both of them for this album."

While Warren is excited about future music and projects, he's keeping them under wraps for now.

"This next album is going to have a little bit more rock and roll to it, possibly," he says.

Despite the whirlwind of his music career and viral covers, Warren stays grounded by cherishing the moments he has to himself. He enjoys an array of hobbies, including snowboarding, wake surfing, longboarding, boxing and even recently discovered a new talent for pickleball.

"Anything athletic, you can pretty much sign me up, and you probably want me on your team," he jokes, emphasizing the importance of physical and mental well-being.

Warren's journey from an aspiring athlete to a promising musical sensation is one of dedication, authenticity and profound storytelling. As he continues to captivate audiences with his unique blend of country and rock sounds, his future as an artist seems incredibly bright. His emotionally resonant performances and genuine connection with his audience set him apart as a rising star to watch. As Warren Zeiders and his fans embark on this musical journey together, it's apparent he's only just begun to leave his mark on the world of music.

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