Eric Church selected 14 year old McKinley James to be on the cover of Mr. Misunderstood, star in the music video, and announce to the press that the album was out.

Watch the video below to hear what it was like playing Mr. M! Check out McKinley's Facebook page !

The Anonymous Cover Art
Rather than putting himself on the Mr. Misunderstood LP cover, Church chose McKinley James "Mickey" Smay, a 14-year-old high-school freshman from the Rochester, New York, area who also stars in the title tune's video, playing the outcast in the Buddy Holly glasses who gains inspiration and confidence through music.


The young musician is the son of rock drummer Jason Smay, who also appears in the clip. For the young performer, the biggest surprise came prior the CMA Awards, when he was asked to announce the album's release at a press conference, since Church was busy prepping for his show-opening performance with Hank Williams Jr. In the end, the anonymity of the cover only added to the album's music-first nature.

Who is Mr Misunderstood?

Meet ‘Mr. Misunderstood,’ the Teen Who Stars in Eric Church’s New Music Video [WATCH THE VIDEO]

[The BIG SURPRISE for the fans] With albums so effortlessly shareable digitally — music has value, as we're so often reminded — it'd have been simple to disseminate the 10-track, 39-minute record via the Internet. But Church has never been that big a fan of technology and, by shunning the easy way, he gave fans the ultimate joy: one of opening a mysterious package that arrived on their doorstep.


Eric Church - Mr. Misunderstood

Below, Eric Church performing another new song, "3 Year Old" and telling the story behind it. Nashville, Tennessee 7/30/2015 at the Ascend Amphitheater

( I was there both nights, 5th row! -Steve \m/\m/ )






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