Eric Church and his family have a long history of Christmas traditions, but one of his favorites was their Christmas breakfast.

“My grandmother, when she was alive, would always come over, and every year she would bring this Christmas story, and some of them were gut-wrenching. I’m not going to lie to you. They were just heart tugging stories about people who had had…about a Christmas miracle, who had something happen to them; something magical for Christmas that had turned life around…whether it was a homeless person, or just anything,” says Eric.

“She would always look all year long and find this story, and then we would have breakfast and she would read it, and it was just our family and we’ve carried that on. My mom does that now and she’s kind of taken it and she finds the story, and that’s something I’m going to do with my family. And Katherine and I have talked about it. It’ll be her turn to find that, and we have a big Christmas breakfast and we sit around and we share that.

It’s just a neat thing, family-wise, to have that and to always wonder what that story is going to be and what it’s going to be about, and sometimes they’re brutal. I mean it can be hard, you know. You get up on Christmas morning and you’re in a good mood and they’re just gut-wrenching, you know, but it’s fun to put things in perspective, and it makes you think about people that aren’t as fortunate.”

Christmas for the North Carolina native’s fans came early last month when he surprised them with a brand new album and single – both titled “Mr. Misunderstood.” The song is currently sitting in the Top 20 on the country charts.