NASCAR Sprint Sound & Speed presented by SunTrust
Nathan Lee Jackson
January 9, 2010
KERRY THARP: If I can have your attention, we'll continue with our driver, country music artist media availability here. Joining us up on the podium we have a couple of NASCAR drivers and a couple of artists. To my immediate left is Aric Almirola. Aric has competed in all three national series for us. He ran about eight Sprint Cup events last year, four Nationwide, and 16 Camping World Truck Series events. Done a little bit of everything. Certainly has a great future in the sport.
We have Jason White. Jason is a guy I think you're going to hear and read a lot about in our sport and has a great passion for what he does. Really just loves the sport of NASCAR. Very talented driver. We look forward to hearing from him.
HOLLY: Hailing from the heart of Kentucky bluegrass country we have Nathan Lee Jackson. Nathan moved to Nashville shortly after high school and started songwriting. Caught the ear of Jeff (indiscernible), who has produced Jackson's debut album Complicated Hearts released in September of last year. We have Whitney Duncan. In 2007 she was the finalist on the USA Network show Nashville Star.
KERRY THARP: Aric, tell us about your plans in 2010, what you're looking forward to.
ARIC ALMIROLA: I'm excited I'm going to run the '09 Cup car for Phoenix Racing. Pretty excited about that. Still planning to run some truck races like I did last year with Billy Ballew Motorsports.
I went into Homestead having no idea what I was going to do next year. Over the winter months was pleased to find out that I'm going to run the '09 Cup car and still be able to drive Billy's truck. I'm looking forward to it.
KERRY THARP: Jason White, tell us what your plans look like for 2010 in NASCAR.
JASON WHITE: Our plans are we're going to drive the No. 23 Dodge for S&S Green Light Racing. It's a new team. It's a team that has been in existence a couple years. We're pretty excited to be with those guys for next year.
It's going to be a pretty good season for us. We're excited.
HOLLY: Nathan, tell us a little bit about now you met Jeff, what working with him was like, some of your plans for this year.
NATHAN LEE JACKSON: I had a friend to went up to the Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, where the label is, played some songs for members of Jeff's production team. He liked what he heard, gave me a call, flew to Nashville and talked. We started as a production deal that morphed into the label deal we have now.
Just really an amazing experience working with Jeff, someone who has been a famous producer for 30 years, has all that experience. Now we have the album out that's been released as of September, Desperate Man, which is climbing the charts. Looks like I have about 40 dates coming up in the next few months.
HOLLY: Where all are you going?
NATHAN LEE JACKSON: All over the country.
HOLLY: Whitney, tell us about your 2010. What are have you got going on?
WHITNEY DUNCAN: I'm doing a lot of songwriting right now, getting ready to go back in and cut a new single. Got a lot of tour dates lining up as well, so playing a lot on the weekends. Yeah, so new single coming. That's exciting.
KERRY THARP: We'll open the floor to some questions.
Q. Aric, is that a full season in '09?
ARIC ALMIROLA: Well, I talked with James about it. I mean, his plan is to go full-time. Still working on a lot of things. At this point, when I got off the phone with him just the other day, it was, We're going racing, and the rest will take care of itself. Hopefully we can get everything situated in the next couple weeks.
But, yeah, I mean, we're going to go to Daytona. I've asked them, Are we going to race, start and park? What's our plan? He told me, Just get in and drive it. So I'm excited. I'm looking forward to 2010. I'm ready.
Q. Jason and Aric, Mike Skinner was in here earlier saying the mood changed from a few years earlier where teams were only looking for young guys.
ARIC ALMIROLA: He's just saying that because he's a veteran.
Q. Both of you guys have a lot of experience. Is there a shift where experience is coming into play more?
JASON WHITE: Well, it's tough because this day and time, you can't wreck every week. It's hard to put a young guy in there that doesn't have any experience. If you wreck, obviously it costs a lot of money. They need somebody in there that can go out on the track and be able to not wreck the car, have a good result, be able to finish.
He's kind of right to an extent.
WHITNEY DUNCAN: So really they're looking for someone like me (laughter).
ARIC ALMIROLA: Jay is right. At the same time, the future of our sport has to grow. The only way it's going to grow is with young people. I mean, it's the law of physics. We always get older every year.
Mark I think has brought a lot of life back to the older veterans. I think he's kind of proven what's still out there, what people are still able to do. I think he's pushing their limits for sure.
At the same time, I mean, like I said, you're not going to stop having the next American idol, so to speak, in NASCAR. You're not going to stop having the next young guy coming up. It was Jeff Gordon a long time ago. Today it's Joey Logano. Who knows what is going to be next.
Q. What you care to reveal your objective for qualifying in Daytona?
JASON WHITE: We bought a truck from Roush-Yates Racing. So it should be a pretty good truck. We're going to run it as a Ford. Our goal is to put it on the pole. We've done a lot of wind tunnel on it. I think we have a good shot at doing it.
I talked to Kyle because he's starting the truck team, he bought about 15 trucks from Roush. He cut the nose and tail off to make it a Toyota. He said he lost -- he actually gained a lot of drag. He said I'm looking pretty good for that. I'm pretty excited about Daytona.
Q. Let's get to the music ones. Nathan Lee, who is booking you on your dates?
NATHAN LEE JACKSON: CAA.
Q. Is it Rod or John?
NATHAN LEE JACKSON: Jeff.
Q. Are you doing mainly opening act?
NATHAN LEE JACKSON: Yes. All opening act.
Q. Any particular artists you're working with?
NATHAN LEE JACKSON: It's a tour with Brady Seals, Kate and Kacey and me.
Q. Because of being produced by what is basically a rock producer, is that going to be your leaning or towards country?
NATHAN LEE JACKSON: I think people who listen to the album will be really surprised that it's kind of eclectic in nature. When it gets country, it's really country, like from the holler.
Q. Whitney, if I remember correctly, you are on Warner Brothers. When is the new CD coming out?
WHITNEY DUNCAN: Yes, not sure just yet. I've heard maybe spring, summer of 2010. I don't have a specific date just yet. Probably depending on the single.
Q. Are you doing a lot of co-writes?
WHITNEY DUNCAN: I'm doing a ton of co-writes. I'm kicking off the year with a lot of writes. It's fun.
KERRY THARP: Thank you.
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