If you’ve ever been to a Brett Young show, chances are you’ve also see Matt Ferranti live. The multi-talented musician plays both keys and guitar for Brett and has since been before Brett became a superstar with 5 consecutive Number One singles. But on Brett’s 2020 Chapters Tour, Ferranti is taking on a bigger role- the opening act. Before he takes on his double duties at the SNHU Arena on Friday night, we caught up with the Michigan native.
Matt grew up in Michigan and had a very religious upbringing with his father being a minister. And it was through the church and his home state that he fell in love with music. He formed a band called the North Union that also included Lauren Duski- whom you may be familiar with as runner up on NBC’s The Voice. They got a gig opening for Gloriana at a show at the Royal Oak Music Theatre in Michigan and Gloriana complimented them but said that they need to get out of Michigan if they wanted to make it work. “I always felt like music was something I wanted to do and supposed to do. I’m a religious guy for the most part and it feels like something I was called to do. What I knew was that I couldn’t fulfill that in Michigan,” he tells us. After a few visits to Nashville, Matt fell in love with Music City because the fact that the city is so music-centric.
Six years ago, after making the move to Nashville, Matt was playing a round at a bar called the South during their weekly Lookout Hour. And on the same round was another artist named Brett Young. Matt had been in Nashville for about a year and Brett had been in town for about 6 months. There was probably 25 people there that night and afterwards, Brett invited Ferranti to come and play with him at a show in Atlanta. Matt recalls, “We were nobodies. We were fresh kids in town. We didn’t know anybody. To watch him go from that to five Number Ones in a row is pretty crazy. Playing Nissan Stadium for CMA Fest was insane. We got to play Gillette with Luke Bryan which was insane. There’s a lot of things that put it into perspective that Brett is killing it. And now he’s helping me out. Big brother me, if you will. He asked me to open the whole tour which is insane for someone who is an up-and-coming- and I’m as new as it gets.“
He continued, “Brett actually had let me open for him a few times here and there, including once in Michigan which was cool. And one of those times he came on the band bus, and he never comes to the band bus, because he has his own bus, right? I was like, ‘what are you doing over here? You wanna do a shot of whiskey?‘” But Brett was there for something else, to propose the idea of Ferranti opening the tour for him. “It is unprecedented. This doesn’t happen very often and I know that I am lucky to even be in this spot.“
With the opening act secured, it was time for Ferranti to make some new music. It’s not that he didn’t have any originals, but for an opening slot, you want to make sure you capitalize on the opportunity to show off your talents and abilities. So just a few weeks ago, he released a self-titled EP. He says of the project, “I think these songs are some of the best songs I’ve ever written in my life. I am insanely proud of this music. This is the first time that I’ve worked with a Number One producer in Jimmy Robbins and Noah Needleman co-produced it. And with Jimmy’s touch, they made it sound like it could be on the radio right now. It’s done the best on Spotify than any other songs I’ve released. I’ve just started playing the shows out live and it’s so cool to be able to sing a great song and to have it register with people in way that previous songs hadn’t done before.“
The EP features 5 songs, of which he will release all as singles over the next 8 months. Matt wrote every song except ‘Make It To The Bedroom,’ which was written by Josh Kerr and Hannah Ellis. That song is currently the most popular on Spotify, and rightfully so with beautiful harmonies that also feature Ellis- but the next closest is my personal favorite off the EP, ‘Love Somebody.’ His sound is unique and one which he describes as ‘Justin Timberlake country.’ “My sound is like Justin Timberlake made a country album. I know ‘Man of the Woods’ was kinda country, but it wasn’t really. It was a different sound but the same Justin Timberlake. I grew up singing boy bands stuff- trying to emulate my voice to that music because I thought they could sing so damn well. So that’s kinda what it is now- Justin Timberlake country.“
So if you’re going to the SNHU Arena tonight to see Brett Young and Matt Ferranti, make sure you get in the venue early to see Ferranti’s set. Each night on this tour, Matt is bringing out his inner Mamba a little more as he learns this new role while he takes advantage of this incredible opportunity that one of his best friends has given him.
To listen to Ferranti’s EP on Spotify, click here.