Parker McCollum on the inspirations behind his new EP, ‘Hollywood Gold’

Julia Maenius, Assistant Sports Editor

Parker McCollum, otherwise known as the The Limestone Kid, has released a new EP, “Hollywood Gold,” following his top-charted 2017 album “Probably Wrong.” McCollum released the six-track EP, named after a racehorse his grandfather bought, on Oct. 16.

Solely as a musician, I think I have grown a lot,” McCollum said. “We played probably 130 to 140 plus shows a year, so if you do anything that much, you notice improvement naturally.”

    Inspired by the singer/songwriters of his childhood, McCollum draws influence from Americano-style artists. Working on “Hollywood Gold” for over a year, McCollum cut multiple songs at a time to achieve his goal of creating music with the changing seasons. 

    “When I write records and try to create, it kind of takes a hold of my mind,” McCollum said. “I care a lot about trying to not cut a goofy song or not to write a song that doesn’t feel real or honest. I just want people to believe it. Whether it feels real or not, it doesn’t seem fabricated.” 

    McCollum’s first song on the EP, “Young Man’s Blues,” sets the tone for the collection, which stays true to McCollum’s style of emotion-driven lyrics that resonate with him by carrying the most personal weight and honesty. This track is McCollum’s favorite on the EP, as it reveals his emotions at the time of his songwriting process.

Photo courtesy of Madison Florence

  “It seems as though with these records, I will write them about what I have already gone through or am going through at the time,” McCollum said. “It always turns out that a few months or a year later, all of the songs are even more relevant. ‘Young Man’s Blues’ is one that — I think it is hard for me to admit that, when I wrote that song, it was relevant for me at the time, and it is even harder now for me to admit that I am still feeling what I felt when I wrote that song.” 

The second track on the EP, “Like a Cowboy,” was written in the early 2000s by country singer/songwriter Chris Stapleton and Big Al Anderson. This track reminded McCollum of his youth when he worked with his grandfather on the family ranch where he was given the nickname “The Limestone Kid,” McCollum utilizes the slow burn country element from the piano and the old country sound of the composition as a reminder of his youth.

    “The label sent it to me, and it reminded me a lot of my granddad and how I grew up,” McCollum said. “It was a fun process getting to find that song within myself.”

    McCollum broke to the top of the charts with his third track on the EP, “Pretty Heart.” This was his first major label single debut, and it landed him in the Top 20. This track follows McCollum’s record of heartbreak tones he is known for, portraying the differing emotions following a breakup. 


Photo courtesy of Ailie Birchfield

“Really good songwriting can still prevail on country radio,” McCollum said. “You can still make it big in country music without singing in the pop side of things. It is not all butterflies and rainbows all the time, and it doesn’t have to be like that to be successful.”

    The final three tracks on the EP carry the same tones, including a song named in tribute to McCollum’s girlfriend, “Hallie Ray Light”; an emotional, yearning track entitled “Hold Me Back”; and the final love song of the collection, “Love You Like That.”

    McCollum tributes his work ethic to his grandfather. His career mantra was given to him by the lead vocalist of the country group Randy Rogers Band, Randy Rogers, who managed him at the start of his career for over two years. 

    “He told me one time when I very first started, ‘Everyone you see on the way up, you are going to see on the way down,’’’ McCollum said. 

    McCollum utilized the name of his EP to represent the process of searching for something that appears unattainable yet can be found by searching hard enough. McCollum credits his career and success in country music as his own Hollywood Gold.


Click the link below to enjoy ‘Pretty Heart’.