You say you’re not familiar with Chris Cagle? That’s OK by him.
“Every night I ask how many people have never seen us. Seventy to 80 percent raise their hands. That means I have the opportunity to make new fans who want to come back and see us.
“I can dig that all day long,” Cagle said.
The country music entertainer is scheduled to take the main stage at the Sandwich Fair at 7 p.m. Friday. Tickets cost $15 and $20, and can be ordered online at www.sandwichfair.com.
With a heavy tour schedule this summer, we spoke with Cagle before a recent show in Prairie du Chien, Wis. Instead of worrying about getting home to see his family between shows, at least during the summer months, Cagle said he takes his wife and three daughters on the road with him.
“I’m turning the kids into a little pack of road dogs, enjoying seeing new places,” he said with a laugh.
“My whole attitude is that I want to use this opportunity to show them new places, get them to try new foods.”
Cagle is not one to shy away from new experiences, and said he’s happy to meet fans almost every night. He understands the responsibility of being in the spotlight.
“The fan-artist dynamic is a big give-and-take. If you take, you have to give. It will all go away if you don’t give back,” he said.
Along with leaving it all out there on the stage, Cagle gives of himself during the writing process.
“I do go into writing sessions in Nashville with an idea. It sounds crazy, but the best way get into the writing process is to get out of the way of the creative process,” he said.
Cagle said he has a big shop at his home where he goes to “put a chair in the middle of it, drink three or four beers and start jamming with the doors closed where nobody can see me. Somewhere in that whole deal, it comes to me, ‘oh my God, that’s awesome,’ and I just start writing.
“The hardest thing is just listening to the music and it will tell you what it wants you to do. I’m just quirky I guess, but for me, it starts with the groove.”
Cagle’s groove has included such hits as “My Love Goes On and On,” “Laredo,” “I Breathe In, I Breathe Out,” “Chicks Dig It” and most recently, “Let There Be Cowgirls.”
Like most songwriters, Cagle said he has been influenced by others, such as Kris Kristofferson, Jackson Browne, the Eagles and Charlie Daniels.
And when he’s not on the road, entertaining existing fans or creating new ones, Cagle said he’s raising cutting horses and beef cattle, and gardening.
“I’m a huge fan of gardeners. I am trying and learning to grow better food,” he said.