Jerrod Niemann and Lee Brice are longtime friends and collaborators but on the new season of Celebrity Family Feud, the two country singers will be pitted against each other. The Curb label-mates are set to appear on Season 3 of the ABC series, with their episode airing Aug. 27. Both artists are playing for charity with Brice competing for Folds of Honor and Niemann for the USO.
“You can expect some chaos because Lee and myself have caused a lot of chaos and knowing my family, Lee’s family and Steve Harvey, it’s the perfect mixture of madness,” Niemann tells Sounds Like Nashville without giving too much of their friendly competition away. “There’s a lot of little one liners and dousies in there. Our favorite thing, other than getting to spend time with friends and family and have that crazy memory, is that we get to raise money for USO and Folds of Honor.”
Niemann took part in his first USO Tour last year and he said the experience was life-changing. Several of his stops overseas to perform for U.S. troops included Kosovo, Kuwait, Afghanistan and Romania. He says he hopes to return each year and bring music to our soldiers throughout his career.
While Niemann has had family members in the military, the experience he had being in Kuwait was something he took to heart. He recalls very hot days — some where the temperature got up to 128-degrees — and seeing the men and women with 70 pounds of gear on them day after day in the intense heat. It gave added perspective to the sacrifice our troops make being away from their families for often months at a time.
“They’re missing some of the best memories of their life here to allow all us to have days like this to hang out and chase dreams,” he says, getting reflective. “It takes a pretty special person. It was a life changing trip for me for sure.”
Niemann, who recently released his new single “God Made a Woman,” says the experience has carried its way into the songs he writes and the way he lives his life. He also looks to the future of country music, saying that he predicts songs with more powerful messages are on the way.
“It gives you a slap in the face of the real world and that there are messages to be heard. When you’re a commercial artist you are chasing a certain thing but in country music, the song is what always comes first and that’s what makes country music so great,” he stresses.
Niemann says he hopes to make it a point to play for U.S. troops each year and looks back on his time on Celebrity Family Feud nostalgically.
“It was so much fun. Hopefully we can do something like it again,” he concedes. “I’ve had a lot of fun raising money for some good causes but that may take the cake.”
Catch Jerrod Niemann and Lee Brice on Celebrity Family Feud on Sunday, Aug. 27.