Cale Dodds says his new single "I Like Where This Is Going" is about anticipation. That describes his career thus far, as well.

"The stars ain't started to glow / But we both know that they're all coming / The cork's still stuck in the bottle / But that bottle's in your hand,” he sings during the sultry chorus. “It kinda feels like this whole night is in slow motion / I like where this is going.” 

It's a love song about those tense early moments of new love or a magical moment shared after a relationship has blossomed. "The song’s about never revealing the end and giving away the ending,” Dodds tells Taste of Country. Busbee and Nicolle Galyon helped him write it.

“I remember we were stuck on a few parts lyrically because there’s a lot of things that we had that kind of gave away the ending," he shares.

So, is he naturally patient?

“I would typically say no," he answers with a smile, adjusting to recognize that he has been forced to be patient. "I’ve been playing music since I was 13 years old and playing shows since I was a kid. My story is the longevity. My story is a lot of work.”

The 31-year-old Dodds came from Columbus, Ga., nearly a decade ago and signed with Warner Music Nashville in 2017. Like most artists, he's improved and built a fanbase one song at a time. His influences range from Will Hoge to One Direction, but growing up it was always country music on the radio. Watching Garth Brooks play Central Park in New York City was a life-changing moment. Wild-haired rockers helped him define his own unique sound.

“When I heard Tom Petty for the first time, I remember feeling a sense of belonging that I just didn’t have," he shares. "I just thought he was the Southern guy that told Southern stories in a country way but kind of had a rock edge that appealed to a lot of the masses.”

This month Dodds started opening shows on Chase Rice's AM/PM Tour, a trek that will keep him busy through mid-December. Between stops he'll promote "I Like Where This Is Going" and continue to write and record new music, one song at a time. He has a goal, but it's the slow, patient kind.

“I want to be a career artist," he says. "I want to be 65 on stage, playing for four hours like Springsteen."

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