Year in Review: So, How Was Your 2020, Dierks Bentley?

So, How Was Your 2020? is a series in which our favorite entertainers answer our questionnaire about the music, culture and memorable moments that shaped their year. We’ll be rolling these pieces out throughout December.

Dierks Bentley and his family were vacationing in Colorado when the pandemic began and Tennessee schools went remote, so they spent several weeks after that getting outdoors on mountain trails and riding their bikes. In the midst of it, Bentley was helping promote the debut album by Hot Country Knights, a faux Nineties country group in which he performs as Doug Douglason — a connection he’s never acknowledged — and also served as producer. Quarantine unfortunately meant that the group didn’t get to perform live, but Bentley has hinted that the group may still hit the road when it’s safe to do so. Later in 2020, Bentley released “Gone,” his first single from an upcoming new album. Here, he discusses how he got really into mountain biking, looked to Sam Bush for comfort, and held out hope for economic recovery from a devastating year.

The album I listened to the most in 2020 was:
Ben Howard’s Every Kingdom

My favorite TV show to stream during quarantine was:
Little Fires Everywhere and The Queen’s Gambit

The song that will define “2020” for me is:
Old Pine” by Ben Howard
“Don’t Blink” by Fancy Hagood

I’d define my current state of mind as:
Cautiously optimistic

The viral video I kept coming back to in quarantine was:
“The USA Begins with US,” Hot Country Knights

The old-favorite album I returned to for comfort this year was:
Sam Bush’s Circles Around Me

The old-favorite movie I returned to for comfort this year was:
What About Bob? 

A new hobby I picked up in quarantine was:
Mountain biking…I’ve always biked but this summer I was able to really get into it. Doing half the Telluride 100 in freezing rain and thick mud, riding up to and on a section of the Colorado Trail, and fat biking up snow covered trails at night have been some of the highlights.

The best book I read in quarantine was:
The Splendid and the Vile by Erik Larson
The Dutch House by Ann Patchett
The Hope and Glory by Jon Meacham

Something positive that happened to me that nobody noticed was:
I spent more time with my family than I have in years, and a lot of outdoor adventure.

The biggest hero of 2020 was:
The nurses and doctors on the front lines.

A word or phrase I never want to hear again is:
“…but because of Covid, we can’t…”

My biggest hope for 2021 is:
An economic recovery for all the people and business affected by the pandemic. A more united country.