Behind the Scenes With Levi Hummon

The talented singer songwriter credits his parents for his strength and creative success

Levi Hummon’s mother, Becca Stevens, is the founder of Thistle Farms, a priest, an author, and an entrepreneur. His father, Marcus Hummon, is one of Nashville’s most prolific Grammy-winning songwriters, having written for The Chicks and Rascal Flatts. 

But who is Levi Hummon as an artist?

With over 145 million streams on Spotify, a dedicated fan base that can sing his lyrics back to him, and wisdom to spare - he’s poised to thrive. 

“I can say this, the only reason I’m a strong man is because my mom is a strong woman. Growing up with the women of Thistle Farms is the reason I am who I am. My dad had so much of an impact on my creative self. My soul and the reason I’m doing this and why I feel like there’s a platform and I feel like there’s hope is because of my mom. She’s a rock star.”

When asked about the weight of expectations, he laughs. “I ignore it. I don’t really feel a weight from my parents, only support. I want to impress my dad, and to show him I’m a legit artist, and I also want to step away from his shadow. Still, my favorite moments are coming home and sitting at the piano, playing him my new music, and hearing his. Now that I’m thirty, those are the moments in music I value the most, my dad playing the banjo and me playing the guitar, just picking and chilling.” 

Regina Stuve, the vice president and general manager of pfa Entertainment Media and Marketing and close family friend, shares a story. “Levi told me that his dad wakes up every morning and plays the piano starting at 7:00 am. That’s how he started his day as a kid.” 

“Every single morning growing up,” Levi says. “And know this - my room growing up was in the basement, and the piano is right above … I would hear my dad’s boot just stomping on the ground as he kept the tempo. Now I twitch every time I hear that exact same sound. 

“I didn’t realize how much of an impact it had, hearing my dad write songs … until I left Nashville. When I picked up a guitar for the first time, I was like, ‘Why am I listening to The Clash, The Ramones, Mumford and Sons, and then I pick up a guitar and it sounds like Rascal Flatts?’ It was always a country song or pop country, and that’s where I laid my roots in songwriting. I was writing songs every single day, sometimes twice.” All this occurred in Florida, where Levi went to art school for two years. He sent his songs back to Nashville. His dad eventually told him he might as well come home but wouldn’t let him drop out of college, so he enrolled at Belmont. After six months, Levi did leave school - because he had a publishing deal and record contract.

“I had a lot of work to do when I signed to Big Machine. I realized that I needed to do some artist development for myself. I’d never really played in a show, never really toured. I told the label, ‘I need to do this on my own for a little bit before I can do it with yall.’ It’s an incredible feeling to step away and decide if you’re gonna believe in yourself. I’ve been able to open for people like Tim McGraw, Keith Urban, Lady A, and Martina McBride - some of my favorite artists of all time. I’ve played the Opry now 20-something times. It’s just been an incredible journey so far.” 

He started releasing songs independently in 2017. “I feel like we’re just getting started. It’s not just the industry that gets to define what you’re going to put out now. Fans are so accessible thanks to things like Tik Tok and Instagram. You can put out songs that are a little different and if they really react, there’s not just an option to say no to them. They drive it.”

When asked where he finds his support, Levi says, “My parents are huge, Thistle Farms is an inspiration for me, and the people who’ve been supportive of me from day one, Fletcher Foster, Jimmy Robbins, Eric Arjes, John Ozier, those who’ve really championed my music, Greg Galloway, Regina Stuve - I’m always trying to surround myself with good people, because at the end of the day I want it to feel like family. I always want it to be a relationship. Music is a business, at the same time it’s so personal. My marketing scheme is what do I do every day, and my songs are my heart, so how can you not want to surround yourself with people who are part of your family?” 

Referencing his most recent release, “For Me” he says, “It’s for everybody. It’s a love song, but it’s also really about redemption, and it’s a song [that says] it’s okay to be flawed and messed up, and it’s okay to change. The most honest and genuine version of change is not when you change for somebody else, but when you change for yourself. When you find somebody in your life, when you have a mother, when you have a girl, anybody, when they love you so much that you want to change for yourself? They’re doing good work. When I wrote that song, the original idea was that I wanted somebody who loved me for me, and then I thought, actually, I kind of want to love me for me, and then it turned into, I want you to love me so much that I want to change for me.”

Levi says that fans can look forward to “a bunch of new music coming out this summer, early fall,” and he has local shows on the horizon. On June 2nd, he’ll play the Ole Smoky Distillery Shine Fest to celebrate National Moonshine Day, and he’s part of the lineup for Nashville’s July 4th “Let Freedom Ring” celebration. \

“So many people are cheering for him,” says Regina Stuve. “I can’t wait to see what he does.” 

Neither can we. 

There’s a lot of life that goes into three minutes. - Levi Hummon

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