Urban spoke with ET during rehearsals for the CMT Artists of the Year celebration in October at Nashville's Schermerhorn Symphony Theater. That happened to also be around the same time that he and Ross Copperman collaborated on the song "Female," written in response to the Harvey Weinstein scandal that rocked Hollywood. Urban would go on to debut that song with a performance at the CMA Awards in November.
The 50-year-old singer-songwriter admitted that he had "no idea" when his Ripcord follow-up would be ready for fans' ears, but said that he had been working on the project since the start of 2017.
"It's always about the spirit of a record," he said. "I think the songs that end up on an album, for me, are the ones that seem to all be in unison with a particular spirit that's happening with a record. You know, Ripcord definitely had that feeling of a spirit and this album will have a spirit of its own."
Here's hoping that the "spirit" is pointing Urban in the direction of sweet, new love songs. Asked for his step-by-step guide to writing a perfect love song, his advice is simple.
"Honesty, that's it," he said, adding in "vulnerability" for good measure.
The next night, Urban's wife of more than a decade gushed over her "maestro" hubby's new tunes on the red carpet.
"I am dancing around the living room to it already," Kidman swooned. "I am like, 'Put it out!'"
With 10 studio albums and countless industry honors under his belt already, Urban says he's still working on his career bucket list.
"I just think of it in terms of just getting better at what I do. That's always been the goal," he mused. "That hasn't changed. It's like, if you like climbing mountains, when you get to the top, you find another mountain -- 'cause you like climbing mountains. Not so much being on the top of one, just climbing them. That's what I like doing."