FAIRFIELD — Jon Pardi is pretty convincing when he tells you that his concerts are all about having a good time. The fact that his fans are affectionately called “Pardi Animals” only reinforces the notion.
The Dixon native, who is releasing his first CD, “Write A Song,” offered up a huge dose of Southern hospitality during a phone chat Thursday morning. The 28-year-old, who has been recently featured in Billboard and Country Weekly magazines, isn’t letting all the attention go to his head.
“It’s still not real to me yet,” Pardi said on the phone from Nashville. “I still feel we could do better.”
An interesting thought from a young man who is getting ready to hit the road with Dierks Bentley and has inked a deal with Capitol Records Nashville. Add to that, Pardi had arthroscopic surgery Dec. 18 to repair his meniscus and take out some leftover scar tissue in his left knee.
“I’m walking now,” he said happily. “But I can’t jog again until February.”
The crowd that turns out Jan. 11 in Folsom to see the Solano County star shine will see a more sedate performer. Onstage dancing will be limited.
“I’m going to have to George Strait it,” he said of the show. “I’ll sit and wave a little bit.”
Pardi was back on the stage New Year’s Eve. It was fun, albeit a struggle.
“I think the pain pills made me a little loopy,” he said. “I started rambling.”
His bandmates have had some fun recalling what Pardi said. He takes it in stride. Pardi considers his life an open book.
“Everything I do, I put it out there,” he said.
He played the Dixon May Fair in May 2013. The upcoming show at Toby Keith’s Bar and Grill may be Pardi’s last in the area for several months. He’ll relish in the hometown fans who make the trip. His goal is to autograph every CD purchased at the show and chat with as many fans as he can.
“It’s going to be one big party,” he said, something akin to his packed Dixon May Fair show.
“There wasn’t one fight,” he said. “That’s a good indication everyone had a good time.”
Pardi injured his knee playing high school football. It was the homecoming game of his junior year. He went up to catch a pass and his knee popped. He was advised to give up football. That was fine with him. Pardi had always planned on a career in music.
“I would be better now (at football),” he said. “I was a late bloomer.”
Not too late. He’s made it to No. 14 on the country charts with his song “Up All Night.” He couldn’t ask for better company. Jason Alden’s “When She Says Baby” sits at No. 13. Lady Antebellum’s “Compass” is No. 15.
Pardi co-produced his new recording with Bart Butler, a friend and co-writer. It features 11 tracks including “Missin’ You Crazy,” which charted last summer. The success of “Missin’ You Crazy” delayed the release of the new material so the single could run its course.
The extra time afforded Pardi the chance to get back into the studio and record more new tunes.
Pardi moved to Nashville about six years ago. He said he’s hoping for a big year in country music, big enough that he can buy his mother a recreational vehicle so she can load up family, friends and local “Pardi Animals” and follow him on tour.
Reach Amy Maginnis-Honey at 427-6957 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/amaginnisdr.