If you go
› What: Mitch Rossell
› Where: Riverbend Festival, Tennessee Valley Federal Credit Union Stage, Ross’s Landing
› When: 8:15 p.m. Thursday, May 30
› Admission: $115 three-day wristband, $60 one-day wristband
› For more information: riverbendfestival.com
When Mitch Rossell played Riverbend last summer, he was still basking in the glow of having written "Ask Me How I Know," which Garth Brooks recorded.
The song became a No. 1 hit for the country superstar in October 2017. In fact, it was Brooks' first No. 1 in 10 years since "More Than a Memory" in 2007.
Thursday night, Rossell returns to Riverbend, and one of his original songs will again be in the spotlight. But this one is brand new — a single just released this month: "All I Need to See."
Rossell said in a phone interview that the song was inspired by the woman who is now his wife. She and their son are featured in the lyric video to "All I Need to See," which was released May 20.
"I wrote this song in 2015. At the time, we were dating. It's not necessarily where I thought we were in our relationship then, but as our relationship developed and I look back, it's almost like I wrote it for her now. It's so real to where we are now," he says.
Rossell says response to his new single has been "overwhelmingly good," and the song's lyric video notched more than 2.1 million views on YouTube in its first six days.
Rossell is a graduate of Silverdale Baptist Academy and UTC. After emailing Brooks some songs he'd been working on, the two struck up a friendship and eventually Brooks asked him if he'd like to play onstage with him in 2015. That grew to opening for the country star, which he did through Brooks' world tour last year.
"All I Need to See" is the first in a series of releases Rossell plans over the next year and a half, and eventually those singles will be combined into a package.
"We've cut about 16 songs in the past eight months or so. We've got a lot of songs on deck, and I'm just trying to feel out the order how I want to release them. I've just written so many songs, that I wanted to get some of them on tape to see how they came out. You never know, you might get them on tape and they sound wrong, and then it's back to the drawing board."
Rossell also points out that as an independent artist it's up to him to keep his name in front of the public and keep his music on their electronic devices. By spacing out the releases of new music, he accomplishes that.
"I've got a long way to go to get where I want to be. You spend so much money and time putting a package together, then it all comes out in one moment. Unfortunately, in the world we live in, the attention span is so short that you have to be visible constantly. If not: out of sight, out of mind. If you release all the new music at once, you have a big moment and then it's gone."
He says Thursday's Riverbend audience will hear some of this new music.
"I've never had a piano player at a gig I've done. I'm working on getting a guy out for this. I'll cover some new stuff, play the single for the first live audience and some of my favorites."
Contact Susan Pierce at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6284.
KNOW BEFORE YOU GO
* General-admission wristbands for the remaining three days of Riverbend Festival are $115. One-day general admission is $60.
* Admission wristbands double as the way to pay for drinks, food or merchandise at the festival. Riverbend is a cashless event, so you'll pay with your radio frequency identification wristband rather than using tokens, cash or credit cards.
* During the festival, you can visit stations set up to load cash onto your wristband. Those stations are called top-up stations.
* Tokens left over from previous Riverbend festivals can be redeemed this year only. The only way to add cash or tokens to your wristband is by visiting a top-up station on-site during the festival.
* To make purchases at the festival, your wristband will be scanned and the cost of the purchase withdrawn from the credit balance loaded on your wristband.
* Arrive wearing your wristband. To save time, festival staff recommends adding funds to your wristband before the festival begins. Register on the festival website at https://riverbendfestival.com/about-admission.
AT THE FESTIVAL SITE
* Gates will open at 5 p.m. nightly. For safety reasons, no chairs will be allowed on-site until 5 p.m., and all bags will be searched. No backpacks will be allowed.
* Wristbands will be scanned upon entry and exit. Failure to scan out could prevent your return into the festival.
* Shirt and shoes are required.
* Picnic supplies, coolers, outside food and beverages, refillable containers and glass bottles are prohibited.
* Recording performances is prohibited by terms of contracts; therefore, camcorders and audio equipment are not allowed. Cameras are permitted, but may be restricted in some areas.
* Age verification wristbands are required for all alcoholic beverage purchases and consumption.