by Marcus K. Dowling
Like a lot of us who have been spending evenings over the past year staring longingly out of our windows, Dan & Shay’s Shay Mooney and solo country star Brett Eldredge have been firing up their favorite gaming consoles for online, person-to-person play.
In the first COVID quarter of 2020, online gaming play increased 46% nationwide. “[Shay and I have] been buddies for a long time…but [during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic], we started playing video games,” Eldredge said during a press roundtable promoting his new single “Good Day.”
He continues, “Getting together virtually, via a gaming system, offered a social outlet that was definitely safe during a time when little was known about the virus. Next thing you know, we’re playing every day, all the time, and then start talking away from it more than we used to. I just realized how great of a person he is and how funny he is and how many things we share in common … He’s just a real open and kind-hearted guy.”
Of the many country singles that have been released to help fans cope with quarantine’s mental strain, Eldredge’s maybe the most introspective. In regards to this, he noted, “The decision to wake up and not focus on the negative things … was a big message for myself to learn, ’cause I can find a lot of things to be negative about.”
The midwest-born singer-songwriter continues, “[I needed to teach myself to be] able to try to find some optimism and say, ’You know what…I’m gonna have a good day even if there’s a lot of negative things; I’m gonna put my best self forward, I’m gonna be there for other people, I’m gonna be there for myself, and I’m gonna have a good day and make that decision when I wake up.’”