Dierks Bentley connects with fans in a new, even deeper way with the powerful "Riser" video. Rather than creating a scripted, highly produced clip, the artist took a more organic approach and repurposed one of his most personal, emotional performances of the song: his appearance at the 50th Anniversary ACM Awards in April 2015.

“It was really hard for me not to get emotional that night at the ACMs at Cowboys Stadium,” Bentley tells Entertainment Weekly. “I really wanted to keep the production simple and make the performance all about the arrangement and the lyrics. The reaction that night and now when we perform it on tour has already been so gratifying. People just relate to the message in that song…we’ve all lived it in one way or another.”

The "Riser" video has the intimacy of a solo acoustic show even though the band is present on stage, with Bentley strumming an acoustic at the center on a higher platform under a spotlight. His genuine passion for the message of the song is clearly evident on his face as he sings to the audience, knowing everyone has felt the same thing at some point. It’s a song about perseverance through trials, overcoming obstacles and maintaining hope through it all, and his raw performance is a testament that he knows exactly what he’s singing about.

"Everything we’ve done for this album has been building to the release of ‘Riser’ as a single,” says the singer (quote via Country Music Is Love). “It’s the cornerstone of this record, and the lyrics speak to the kind of guy I want to be. It’s about the country fans that I see out in the crowd each night … the sacrifices they make and the hardships that we all have to overcome. It’s for anyone who chooses to be a Riser.”

Though he still projects a rugged exterior, Bentley has come a long way since his “What Was I Thinkin’” days, with more heart and truth behind his tunes than ever before. Today, he is a unique piece of the country music puzzle. Bentley has even encouraged fans to tell their own “Riser” stories, providing customizable lyric cards for them to create using a line that they identify with most, then post on social media as a testament to their own story and strength.

Bentley is currently on his Sounds of Summer tour with Maddie & Tae, Canaan Smith and Kip Moore.

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