LISTEN: Ron Pope’s “I’ve Gotta Change (Or I’m Gonna Die)

On May 17th, Nashville-based, platinum recording artist, Ron Pope, released a new single, “I’ve Gotta Change (Or I’m Gonna Die),” via Brooklyn Basement Records. Several years ago, Pope sustained a serious back injury. Unable to work but wary of prescribed pain medication, he chose to white-knuckle his way through the ordeal, relying on other ways to manage the pain.

“I’m lucky that I had access to physical therapy and the resources to survive for the months when I couldn’t go to work. Not everyone has those options,” he says. “I know people who’ve been swallowed up by the opioid epidemic, just like I’d imagine everybody else in this country does. I find it deeply unsettling that a gang of billionaires acting as a cartel were allowed to purposely lie to our doctors, saying those pills were safe and non-habit forming, then they killed millions of people and got tens of millions addicted to drugs, and nobody at the top got an ounce of real punishment for it.”

“Not only did no one go to jail, these crazy rich folks are still crazy rich. When someone has ten billion dollars, fining them six billion dollars is meaningless. It doesn’t make a material difference in their lives. All of that infuriated me,” he continues. “These people should be in prison and every dollar they have should be put back into the communities they destroyed. I’m not usually a topical songwriter, but this is something I sat down wanting to speak on.” Earlier this year, Pope released single “I’m Not The Devil (ft. Taylor Bickett).” Both will appear on his next album, slated for a 2025 release.

The independent artist carved his niche in the digital era’s early days with his breakout hit, “A Drop in the Ocean,” which has amassed over 1 billion streams, earning platinum status in the US, alongside double platinum status in Sweden. His prolific songwriting is a natural fit for Music City’s Americana, roots, and country communities.

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About Jerry Holthouse

Music editor for Nashville.com. Jerry Holthouse is a content writer, songwriter and a graphic designer. He owns and runs Holthouse Creative, a full service creative agency. He is an avid outdoorsman and a lover of everything music. You can contact him at JerryHolthouse@Nashville.com

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