Brad Paisley

Biography

Over the course of four albums, including the most recent top-seller, Time Well Wasted, Brad Paisley has grown from country music's favorite young traditionalist to its most unpredictable hitmaker and most slyly exciting concert performer.

At first, we marveled at the breadth of his talents as a multi-threat singer, songwriter, guitarist, performer. Now we marvel at the breadth of Paisley's vision: Who could have foreseen that an artist so rooted in tradition could succeed in taking the music he loves in so many creative directions and do so with such entertaining style?

His sold-out headlining concerts reveal similar surprises: From the computer-animated cartoons he creates and presents during his shows to the amusing way he leads his crack band through their breakneck instrumentals, Paisley broadens the idea of how country music can be presented and how music can hold an audience's attention in a multi-media age.

"When I sit down with a guitar to write a song, or when going into a recording studio, the focus is really on one thing: 'How will this song work on stage night after night?' I think about that every time I write something and every time I record a song," Paisley says.

Mostly, he stays fresh by challenging himself to keep coming up with something new and unexpected--whether it's on record or on stage. His genius comes in how he continues to stretch his artistry while maintaining an easygoing, everyman quality that connects with his audience and invites them to join him on his journey.

For him, the variety and innovations serve one goal: To entertain his fans. "Every move is about creating an enjoyable experience for the audience," says the laid-back West Virginian. "We want to take them on a musical ride that has a lot of different emotions and textures to it."

That's one reason he's repeatedly remained at the forefront in the number of awards and categories in which he's competing at both the CMA and ACM shows. His four 2006 Grammy nominations led the country field, and since the release of his first album in 1999, Paisley's five CMA wins are the most of any new artist to emerge during that time. Moreover, his five No. 1 hits indicate his consistent success at radio, but the number is even more striking when realizing that several of his career-making fan favorites--"Whiskey Lullaby," "Alcohol," "Celebrity," "Little Moments"--aren't among those five.

Along the way, Paisley's four Arista Nashville albums have all been certified Platinum or Double Platinum, with total sales well in excess of six million copies, while his two most recent discs--Mud on the Tires and Time Well Wasted--debuted at No. 1 on Billboard's Top Country Albums chart. Time Well Wasted also ended its first week at No. 2 on the pop sales chart with 192,000 copies sold, while Mud on the Tires likewise launched in the pop Top 10.

Of course, statistics don't measure his remarkable range; for that you have to look at the musical and topical variety found on his albums. When Paisley sings about drinking, he can go from the clever social mirror of "Alcohol" to the dark devastation of Song of the Year award winner, "Whiskey Lullaby." When he sings about relationships, he can shift from the comical reality of "Little Moments" to the poignancy of "We Danced," and from the tongue-in-cheek humor of "I'm Gonna Miss Her" to the sincere directness of "I Wish You'd Stay." He can also convincingly sweep from the spiritual depth of "When I Get Where I'm Going" to the witty social commentary of "Celebrity," and from the backwoods celebration of "Mud on the Tires" to the perceptive family dynamics of "He Didn't Have to Be."

Paisley observes, "I don't want to be one of those artists where someone says, 'All the songs sound the same.' I want to be one of the artists where people never know what might be coming next. That's why 'Whiskey Lullaby' and 'Alcohol' are so different; they're on the same subject, but they're completely different in what they say and how they sound. You're going to write about love and about death and the other big topics, but the fun part is finding a new way to do it--to find a new way to talk about the subjects we all experience or care about."

Similarly, he wants his songs, even the witty ones, to be anchored in reality--for someone to be moved or to laugh because they recognize the situation, no matter how dramatic or funny it may be.

"I think songwriting is at its best when it's a reflection of life, and that's my goal with my songs," he says. "Anything that has something humorous in it is because I've seen something like that and it tickled me. At the same time, anything that's serious or deep, it comes from something I've been through or observed and wanted to write about it."

The variety isn't just in the themes and lyrics; it's also in the musical arrangements. Embracing shuffles, swing, bluegrass, ballads and blues into his songs, Paisley blends traditional and modern influences into something seamless and distinctive, yet always country at its core. "I am a fan of a lot of different styles of music," he says, "and I'm always looking to incorporate them into what I'm doing."

He and his band have built up experience together that lets them stay loose and spontaneous on stage while always staying conscious of the primary mission of putting on an exciting show. "We are really a tight group--on stage and off," notes Paisley. "We hang out quite a bit when we're home. We have a great time with one another, and we miss each other when we're off the road. That's a good situation to have, and I really believe it comes across on stage."

That value of being connected is important to Paisley. He draws on the values of family and community in his songs, his stage show and in his home life. He and his wife, actress Kimberly Williams-Paisley, recently purchased 85 acres outside of Nashville. The couple is living in the 100-year-old farm house on the property while building a log cabin for their permanent home. The land also includes two Palomino horses, 14 Holstein cows and a four-acre pond that the Paisleys added.

"It's really been a godsend," Paisley says of his land, from which, on a clear day, he can see as far as four mountain ridges in the distance. "It's my favorite piece of property I've ever seen. We have all these woods and hiking trails, and room for the horses and cows. I plan to have this land forever."

But that's how Paisley thinks: For the long term. He's always had his eye on building something that lasts--whether it's his music, his concerts, his relationships or his land. He's going to be with us a while, so settle in and enjoy the ride.

Read More

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3rd June 2014 -

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Brad Paisley made his fans chortle today when he posted a selfie that he had taken with the infamous Westboro Baptist Church who were reportedly protesting against the country star's concert in Bonner Springs, Kansas.A...

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27th May 2014 -

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Scott Scovill directs the video for 'River Bank'; Brad Paisley's upbeat new single and the first from his upcoming tenth studio album 'Moonshine in the Trunk' out through Arista Nashville records on August 26th 2014.

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Kesha has signed on to serve as a judge on a new ABC singing talent show, Rising Star, as part of a panel of experts alongside rapper Ludacris and singer-songwriter Brad Paisley. The 'Tik Tok'...

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Last night’s CMAs were definitely surprising in more ways than one – it was a rookies’ night through and through, with first time winners dominating the list, for starters. More than that though, let’s talk...

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7th November 2013 -

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The Country Music Association Awards lit up the Nashville nighttime on Wednesday, 6 November, as 'Country Music's Biggest Night' went off with a bang at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee. Aired live on ABC...

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6th September 2013 -

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Carrie Underwood is a talented, rich and beautiful country singer, but she became instantly more relatable to clumsy regular folk everywhere, when she took a rather ungraceful tumble onstage during her Corpus Christi concert on...

Country Stars Urge Fans To Pray For Randy Travis's Recovery

12th July 2013 -

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Country star Randy Travis is recovering from his emergency brain surgery, while scores of fans and fellow country musicians banded together to urge on the prayers for him. It was a terrifying chain of events...

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19th April 2013 -

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When Brad Paisley and LL Cool J made waves recently with their eyebrow raising “Accidental Racist”, you can bet the parodies weren’t far behind. And what’s public embarrassment without Stephen Colbert? For one thing, it’s...

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Albums of Note... Bonobo, aka Simon Green, may not have found instant stardom in his career but his work is characterised by a steady progress that is reflected in his tracks. North Borders is the...

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11th April 2013 -

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It’s been a week of explaining for Brad Paisly, whose ‘Accidental Racist’ song has, accidently (sweet irony noted) caused loads of controversy. Most recently, he’s been explaining to Jay Leno what it’s all about.“What we're...

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Can the circle be unbroken? Who knows? Is the Accidental Racist racist? Who knows? We’ve listened to that song more times than we care to talk about now and frankly, it’s been reduced to little...

A Week In Celebrity News: Lohan Gives As Good As She Gets, Tom Hanks Wows Onstage, LL Cool J Defends 'Accidental Racist' And Much More!

10th April 2013 -

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Don't Mess With The Lohan: Though David Letterman probed and probed, Lindsay Lohan gave an assured performance on the Late Show this week, following her sentencing to three months in locked down rehabilitation. A healthy...

"I'm Really Proud Of It" - LL Cool J Defends Brad Paisley Collaboration 'Accidental Racist'

10th April 2013 -

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LL Cool J will no doubt be aware of the controversy caused by his collaboration with country singer Brad Paisley but the rapper is standing by the song and has even said that he’s proud...

Brad Paisley & LL Cool J Song Accidental Racist Causes Controversy, Video Removed

9th April 2013 -

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“Video removed by user” doesn’t bode well for Brad Paisley and LL Cool J’s new song, ‘Accidental Racist.’ The tune has been received pretty (and when we say pretty, we mean really) badly by pretty...

Luke Bryan Smashes American Country Awards With Nine Accolades

11th December 2012 -

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Luke Bryan scooped a whopping nine awards at the American Country Awards on Monday (December 10th 2012) missing out on only two other possible titles.The artist won nine out of 24 awards which, considering fifteen...

Nashville Cry-line: Carrie Underwood Performs Emotional Brad Paisley Duet

25th September 2012 -

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Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley performed a surprise duet in Nashville on Sunday night (September 23, 2012). Carrie was so overwhelmed when her fellow country music star Brad appeared onstage alongside that she could be...

Brad Paisley Loves A Good Cigar

26th March 2012 -

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Country star Brad Paisley can't rush a good cigar - he insists the smokes are best enjoyed during thoughtful moments.The Celebrity singer claims it takes focus to sit and puff away on a cigar. He...

Actress Ashley Williams Marries

30th May 2011 -

 News

Actress Ashley Williams wed her longtime boyfriend at the home of her brother-in-law Brad Paisley on Sunday (29May11).The Something Borrowed star exchanged vows with producer Neal Dobson at the Nashville, Tennessee home of her sister...

Brad Paisley Mud On The Tires

29th September 2009 -

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Brad Paisley I'm Gonna Miss Her

29th September 2009 -

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Brad Paisley Letter To Me

3rd December 2008 -

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Sambora Joins Paisley

4th October 2005 -

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Rocker RICHIE SAMBORA thrilled country fans in Los Angeles on Sunday night (02OCT05) when he joined pal BRAD PAISLEY onstage at the Gibson Amphitheater for an encore of DIRE STRAITS' WALK OF LIFE. The...

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Comments

narnia_fan's picture

narnia_fan

Brad is an idiot. She can't carry a note in a bucket. People are fools for litening to him.

8 years 4 months ago
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narnia_fan's picture

narnia_fan

Brad is an idiot. He couldn't carry a note in a bucket. People are fools for litening to his crap.

8 years 4 months ago
Report
View Comments