Luke Combs Speaks About Political 'Tension' in America: 'Nobody Can Even Agree to Disagree'

·3 min read
2021 CMA Arrivals
2021 CMA Arrivals

Jason Kempin/Getty Luke Combs

Luke Combs is sharing his thoughts on the political climate in America.

In a new interview with The Independent, Combs opened up about the explosive reaction to his 2021 collaboration with Billy Strings titled "The Great Divide" and the resurgence of his past use of the Confederate flag.

"We're striking matches on the TV / Setting fires on our phones / Bearing crosses we believe in dying on," sings Combs, 32, on the track, which he's claimed wasn't intended to be a political statement.

Following the song's release, fellow country singer Margo Price shared photos from a 2015 music video featuring Combs performing alongside Confederate flag imagery, including a decal on his guitar.

The "Forever After All" musician issued an apology for "being associated" with the flag, which he claimed "was an image that I associated to mean something else" while growing up in North Carolina.

RELATED: Luke Combs Apologizes for His Past Use of the Confederate Flag: 'There Is No Excuse'

"I am now aware how painful that image can be to someone else. And no matter what I thought at the time," said Combs during the 2021 Country Radio Seminar. "I would never want to be associated with something that brings so much hurt to someone else."

Speaking to The Independent, Combs said he still regrets using the Confederate flag but felt surprised by the strong reaction to "The Great Divide."

"Everything is so contentious and heated, and that's always been super frustrating to me," he told the outlet. "I think what makes our country great is people's ability to have their own opinions and have the ability to disagree. Right now, everyone is just so hot about everything. And that adds to the tension that was going on."

RELATED: Luke Combs and Wife Nicole Welcome First Baby, Son Tex Lawrence: 'So Happy'

Combs said the song was written about how he and Strings, 29, feel as though "nobody can even agree to disagree" in present-day America.

"It definitely upset some folks," said Combs of the song. "But it is what it is. I've never been afraid to stand up for what I think is right."

In June, the musician spoke to The New York Times about the split reaction among fans to his decision to apologize for his previous Confederate flag association.

RELATED: Luke Combs Admits He's 'Struggled' with Weight, But He Wants to Get in Shape to 'Be Around' for Son

CMA Fest 2022 Nashville
CMA Fest 2022 Nashville

Nancy Kruh Luke Combs

"There were fans that were upset that I apologized and fans that were glad I did," Combs told the outlet. "That was a tough time. Before it was all roses, then this thing happens and it's like, 'Hey man, you're a racist.' I've never been that political of a dude but someone telling me I'm racist was a big problem for me, because I'm not racist."

Rather than staying silent and waiting for the discourse to pass, he said he felt the need to address it. "I'm a people-pleaser," explained Combs.

He continued, "I'm a guy that derives a lot of my happiness from making sure other people are happy. That's the nature of my job."

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting