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By CARENA LIPTAK, ABC News
Chase Rice opens up one of the most painful chapters of his past in a new “Letter to My Younger Self” essay for The Player’s Tribune.
The letter details the downward spiral that Chase experienced after his dad’s untimely death, chronicling the ups and downs of his journey and sharing how he ultimately made peace with his grief.
The singer addresses his younger self with compassion, but takes an unflinching look at all the mistakes he made. At times, he turned to drinking and partying to avoid his feelings. He fell out of touch with his faith.
“The scariest thing about that time in your life is that you’re going to completely turn your back on your faith,” he writes of that difficult time. “ You’re going to stop talking to God altogether.”
Fast-forward through a stint as a NASCAR pit-crew member and a role on reality show Survivor, after which Chase landed in Nashville, where he lived with rising duo Florida Georgia Line. Everything changed after he co-wrote their breakout hit, “Cruise.”
But Chase was still grappling with grief and depression.
“Heck, at one point you’re even gonna end up having a falling out with your boys Florida Georgia Line. And over some music-industry bulls****,” he admits. “Y’all are best friends. What the hell is wrong with y’all? I mean….”
Ultimately, Chase made peace with his issues through therapy, faith, and realizing that he’s always going to be a work in progress.
“And every time I step on stage, no matter how good or bad I’m feeling, no matter what s*** went down that day, I do it…with the same three words that Dad tried to teach me,” he concludes. “The three words that I feel like I fully understand now. Keep God First.”
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— Chase Rice. (@ChaseRiceMusic) May 18, 2020