How easy is it to combine a happy marriage with the life of a touring musician?
Man, it’s easy. Our band started on June 4, 2001, on my sixteenth birthday. Me and this girl had been talking since I was fifteen; she had just turned seventeen. We’d been hanging out quite a bit but she said I was too young. On my sixteenth birthday she called and said: “Why don’t you be my boyfriend?” On the day the band started.
You were childhood sweethearts and you’re still together?
Yeah. That’s thirteen years of my life. We got married in 2011. She gave birth to our little boy in 2012. Being in the band and without someone to go home to would be miserable. Other than the time we’re on stage, I just look forward to going back to my family.
Is it difficult to resist temptation with girls throwing themselves at you?
[Laughs] I don’t get off the bus that much. There are beautiful women wherever we go, but the way I was raised… I’m a one-woman dude, man. I respect women.
_The band don’t drink, which might also alleviate the problem. _
Oh, we drink some. In the early days we were just too young to drink. Now we have the occasional cocktail. Even if I was as drunk as I can be, that’s not an issue. The idea of having a wife at home and messing around doesn’t make any sense to me. Why even bother to get married in the first place?
Are any of the other members of Black Stone Cherry spliced?
Yeah, man, three of us are. I was the first. Our bass player Jon [Lawhon] was next, and our drummer John Fred [Young] is now married too. Ben [Wells, rhythm guitar] is the last man standing, but he’s also got a girl at home.
Apparently almost half of all marriages in the US end in divorce. That’s a pretty depressing statistic.
It’s as many as that? Wow. I guess people can’t keep their shit together. My parents got divorced, and I swore that it won’t happen to me. John Fred and I have been with our wives for the longest time. He has two daughters, and we’re all really happy. Family is a big, big part of our upbringing. We’re from a town [Edmonton, Kentucky] with just fifteen hundred people. If you ain’t got family, you ain’t got nothing.