The longtime partners agree that their potent musical chemistry is a reflection of their personal rapport. “The thing about us,” Eric asserts,” is that we really are best friends, and that’s helped to get us through the tougher times. At the same time, though, we’re different enough personality-wise that the combination works. Stephen’s naturally a more social person than I am, and I’m a little more introverted. He tends to see the best in every person and every situation, and I’m kind of the opposite. My songwriting’s different from his, and when we’re in the studio, his approach is different from mine. The way we play guitar is different. The way we arrange songs is different. But our differences come together to make something that each of us couldn’t do on his own.”
The pair’s second-nature chemistry led them both to agree that the occasion of their third album called for the bold musical statement that Whiskey On My Breath would ultimately become.
“In some ways, we’ve played it safe in the past, and I think we’re over that now,” Stephen observes. “It’s easy to fall into that when you’re working in the Nashville system and trying to please everybody. But eventually you come around and realize that you need to be true to yourself. I don’t mind that songs like ‘Whiskey On My Breath’ and ‘Everybody Drives Drunk’ may be a little controversial, because they’re honest, and I think that they’ll make people think about how they feel about life.”