As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to rock the music industry, GRAMMY.com reached out to a few musicians to see how they were spending their days indoors. Today, singer-songwriter Arlo McKinley shares his Quarantine Diary.
[8:30 a.m.] Most days I wake up at my house, just outside of Cincinnati. Today I’m in Huntington, WV meeting with my team and knocking out some work. Woke up around 8 a.m. and went downtown for a coffee. While I was out, I got my first look at the West Virginia Building where I’d be recording a video later for Advance Auto Parts—more on that later.
[3 p.m.] The little downtime I found for myself today, I decided to head into a small local record shop to do some crate digging and ended up finding some great gems! The records I ended up grabbing were: Buckingham/Nicks—I had been looking for a copy of this record for the longest time and was happy to find it here. I always find the best stuff in places like this. Nitty Gritty Dirt Band's Will The Circle Be Unbroken. I already had a copy of this but my drummer, Aaron Cordell, told me to keep an eye out for a copy for him after we watched the Ken Burns Country Music Documentary. George Jones' Greatest Hits—Just another George Jones record to add to my collection. Merle Haggard's Time Life Presents - I had this record when I was a kid so this was more of a sentimental purchase and you can never have too many Merle Haggard records.
[5:30 p.m.] I have a quick zoom call with my agent, Pat May. Pat was one of the first people to take a chance on me and I couldn’t be more grateful to him and all the folks at Crossover Touring for being on our team. On our call, we talk about some upcoming livestream partnerships and discuss potential touring markets in 2021. Before the world shut down we had a tour ready to announce which would take us all over the United States. We are working to get those rescheduled!
[6:15 p.m.] After my call with Pat, I jumped right into an interview with The Kentucky Sports Guys. We had a great talk about Cincinnati sports, Skyline Chili, and our mutual love of the Kickin It On The Creek Festival. Kentucky has always been so supportive of me so it’s always great to catch up with folks in the part of the country.
[7:15 p.m.] After my interview, we jump in the car and head downtown to get a quick beard trim from my buddy Jacob McComas at Jewel City Barber Shop. Jacob has always been a major supporter of mine and I always try to pop in the shop when I’m in town. He’s the only guy I trust to have me looking camera ready for the livestream I’m about to record!
[8 p.m.] After getting trimmed up, we walk over and start setting up for a video shoot. We are on top of the West Virginia Building that I walked by on my morning walk earlier, which is also the tallest building in the city. The view was amazing! This livestream was extra special for me because it was a partnership between myself, Advance Auto Parts, and my good buddy and NASCAR driver, Ryan Blaney.
[11 p.m.] After we wrap the video shoot downtown, we head back to my manager’s house to do a few songs for an interview with WMOT. I play some tracks off the new album including; “She’s Always Around”, “Once Again”, and “The Hurtin’s Done”. I had a little bit more gas in the tank, so I decided to knock out a few new acoustic videos. It’s was a long, but fun day and I feel honored to be busy in times like these.