Country Artists Come Together for a Major TikTok Movement Called the 615 House
Country music is saturating the video-sharing platform TikTok. So much so, that country artists Chris Ruediger and Ashley Cooke got creative, cooking up an idea combining singing, songwriting and other talented country artists in Nashville.
Due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), in-person shows have been put on hold, leaving many artists having to get creative on how to find other ways to get their music out to fans. Learning to pivot in an ever-changing season, TikTok is where the two singers saw an opportunity.
Ruediger and Cooke have been friends for a couple of years now, and they're equally successful on TikTok, both using the platform as a way to share their music. As both individually began to gain success and a following on TikTok, Cooke came to Ruediger with the idea of taking the famed Hype House on TikTok and adding a country music twist to it.
“We saw that people loved seeing country music TikTokers come together and collaborate,” Cooke says.
However, while she noted that people enjoyed viewing country music content, there was no one-stop-shop for that.
“There really isn’t any house based around original content, original music,” Cooke noted, and Ruediger was quick to agree. “There’s not really a house centered around especially music, but more so like the originality and songwriting that is so prevalent in a city like Nashville, the backbone of country music.”
From that epiphany came the birth of The 615 House. Launching on Aug. 17, the group has already accumulated more than 217,000 followers and climbing.
In addition to Cooke and Ruediger, the 615 House consists of country singers Cooper Alan, Pricilla Block, Bonner Black, Thomas Mac, Sammy Arriaga, Tony Evans Jr. and the sister duo, Tigirlily. All are equally successful on both TikTok and Instagram.
“We do want to keep it a tight-knit group. We don’t want this thing to get too chaotic, but we’re certainly open to having collaborations and working with other artists in the future. Always keeping our eye open for that type of thing,” Ruediger notes.
Although they plan to keep the 615 House group small, Ruediger mentions that they do have an application for people who’ve reached out to them. They may potentially add one or two more people to the group for now.
From musical flip cup to songwriting challenges, the 615 House is all about finding ways to create fun content for their followers with the use of their talented voices.
The group creates all their content in a large house in Nashville.
“For the first week, with the virus and all that kind of stuff, we all got tested beforehand and then we went in for a couple of days and filmed the first batch of content,” Ruediger says.
However, unlike TikTok's Hype House, the members of the 615 House don’t live under the same roof.
“We’re not living there right now. We just go to create,” Cooke notes.
however, Ruediger jokes with Taste of Country that maybe after the coronavirus pandemic passes, living together could be a possibility.
“Hopefully down the line we could. The house is amazing and there is plenty of beds, so we could make it work.”
The 615 House is also a platform for the artists to push their individual careers.
“Everyone has their own individual careers right now as artists and songwriters. We are certainly respectful of the fact that everyone’s been working,” Ruediger notes.
With each artist and group pursuing their own careers while also being a part of the house, the 615 House has been a secondary platform for them to not only share their personal music, but also for the other members to rally around whoever is launching new music.
“For us to play a role in that as part of the house that’s facilitating and cross-promoting each other has been great,” Ruediger adds, noting his new single, “Love Like That,” just launched and he’s looking forward to the backing of his friends in the 615 House.
For now, they are pursuing their individual music, but depending on the success of the group as time goes on, Ruediger is hopeful they all could come together to create music.
“Down the line we’re hoping that there could be like some kind of live shows, maybe a tour centered around everyone in the house. Potentially a record or two,” Ruediger says.
All in all, Cooke and Ruediger noted that their followers love seeing them come together to do challenges (e.g. Musical Flip Cup) and collaborate.
“In country music, it’s already kind of like a family, so to see country music artists come together and collaborate is something TikTok hadn’t really seen yet,” Cooke says.
These Are the Top 10 Country Songs of 2020: