John Rich Is Bringing Americans Together With New Talk Show
John Rich has just launched a new show on Fox Nation, and the country music superstar hopes to bring Americans together with the new program.
Fox Nation is a new streaming service, and Rich is excited about the fact that it's not a political platform. The whole point of his new show, The Pursuit! With John Rich, is to bridge some sociopolitical divides, he tells Taste of Country in a new interview.
The show was inspired by a saying Rich has lived by for many years.
"Our Constitution doesn't guarantee us happiness," Rich tells Taste of Country. "It guarantees us the right to pursue happiness. There's a big difference between those two things, and for me, growing up in a double-wide trailer in Amarillo, Texas ... I'm a high school graduate, nothing too fancy. I was always told, 'Hey, John, it doesn't matter where you start off. Dream as big as you can, and work as hard as you humanly possibly can, and you never know — you might do something great. You might get the American Dream, or whatever your dream is.'"
That's the theme of The Pursuit! With John Rich, which airs on the Fox Nation streaming service beginning on Feb. 17. The show features Rich's exclusive interviews with newsmakers including Gretchen Wilson and Wynonna Judd, as well as a diverse group of veterans, inventors and more people from across genres and the political spectrum.
That was part of his intent in trying to bring people together in a politically hotly divided time, Rich says.
"It's an absolute blast to sit down across from these folks and be able to carry out these storylines," he states. "Our country is so eat up with vicious behavior on both sides, left or right, that if you disagree with somebody, well, that's all I need to know about you. You're a bad person," the singer-songwriter, who shot to fame as one-half of Big & Rich, reflects.
"I don't really subscribe to that," he adds. "The one thing we all have in common is, we all have the right to pursue happiness. That's such a beautiful thought, and it's not something I've seen anybody focus on to build a bridge that's higher than the troubled water that is rolling right now through our country. Let's get up over that for a second and have a deep, positive discussion even with people that may not agree with you on everything."
The show eschews politics in favor of personal anecdotes, and that's by design.
"We agree on one thing," Rich adds. "By God, I respect your work ethic, I respect what you've accomplished ... tell me how you did it. That's what this show is all about."
The interviews take place in Rich's iconic Nashville mansion, which is like a third character in the scenes. He believes his past experience as an interview subject has prepared him to take on the opposite role, he says.
"I'm the one that gets interviewed," he reflects. "I know what I like about interviews, and I know what I don't like about certain interviews. And I know they feel the same way as fellow entertainers or people who get interviewed a lot."
Rich says he's able to get to a more personal slant with many of his interview subjects due to his personal friendships with them, but he also prepares extensively and finds himself surprised at some of their answers.
"By the time they get to my house, man, I am ready to go, and we sit for 45 minutes to an hour non-stop and go down this chronological story," he says. "And every single time, when I think I know everything, they say something that I go, 'Well, hell, I didn't know that part.' Which is great, because if I didn't even know that, I guarantee the viewer didn't know that. That's when I know we're really doing something special."
The Pursuit! With John Rich premiered on the Fox Nation streaming service on Monday (Feb. 17). For more information, visit the show's website.
See Inside John Rich's Incredible Nashville Mansion