How much is Brad Paisley worth?
|Net Worth:||$100 Million|
|Date of Birth:||October 28, 1972|
|Country:||United States of America|
Who Is Brad Paisley
One of Nashville’s brightest stars, Brad Paisley is a Grammy-winning singer-songwriter who has ascended with lightening speed to the top of the country music. With immense musical talent, boy-next-door good looks, an easygoing personality and a wonderful sense of self-deprecating humor that shines through in his songs and videos, Paisley has quickly become the quintessential A-list country star. Adored by women, admired by the guys, and highly respected by his own peers, Brad Paisley is on the fast track to what should be his ultimate destination, the Country Music Hall of Fame.
Origins and Early Musical Successes
Born on October 28, 1972 in the northern West Virginia town of Glen Dale, Brad Douglas Paisley’s musical journey began when his maternal grandfather, Warren Jarvis, gave him his first guitar and taught him to play. Two short years later, Paisley made his first public appearance, performing at a local church. By 12, he was writing songs and fronting his first band, called the C-Notes. One of the band’s members was his guitar teacher, a 50-something man named Clarence “Hank” Goddard.
After a successful show at the local Rotary Club, Paisley was invited to perform on the famous Jamboree USA radio program in Wheeling. He was then invited to join the program full-time, and over the next six years he opened for stars like Roy Clark, The Judds and Little Jimmy Dickens, who he would eventually feature in many of his own music videos.
Moves to Nashville
After graduating from John Marshall High School in Glen Dale, Paisley spent two years at West Liberty State College (WV) before transferring to Nashville’s Belmont University on a full-paid scholarship from ASCAP. It was here he began making the initial contacts that would help open doors for him in Music City, including Frank Rogers, who became his producer, and Kelley Lovelace, his primary songwriting partner.
Shortly after graduating from Belmont, Paisley landed a songwriting deal with EMI Music Publishing. His earliest songwriting credits include David Kersh’s top-5 hit “Another You,” and David Ball’s 1999 single “Watching My Baby Not Come Back,” which he co-wrote with Ball. During this time, Paisley also appeared on numerous demos that circulated around Nashville.
Signs His First Major Recording Contract
Paisley signed his first major recording contract with Arista in 1998. A year later he released his debut solo album, Who Needs Pictures, which spawned two chart-topping singles, “He Didn’t Have to Be” and “We Danced.” During that time he also collaborated with Chely Wright on “Hard to Be a Husband, Hard to Be a Wife,” which appeared on the Backstage at the Grand Ole Opry compilation.
He made his first appearance on the Grand Ole Opry stage in May of 1999. Opry legend Jim Ed Brown introduced Paisley to the crowd. In 2000, he gained even more exposure when he was featured on The Learning Channel’s Route 66: Main Street America, along with Grammy-winning blues legend Buddy Guy.
The Awards Begin Flying In
In 1999, Paisley took home the first of what would become an avalanche of major awards through the next decade. He won the Academy of Country Music’s Best New Male Vocalist trophy, followed in 2000 by winning the Country Music Association’s Horizon Award (now called the Best New Artist award). He also received his first Grammy nomination for Best New Artist. Paisley was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry on February 17, 2001.
Brad Marries a Movie Star
In 1991 Paisley took his girlfriend at the time to see the Steve Martin movie Father of the Bride. They eventually broke up. Four years later when the sequel came out, he went to the theater in the hopes that his former girlfriend might actually show up. She didn’t. While watching the movie, Paisley stared at the film’s young star, Kimberly Williams, daydreaming that someday he’d like to marry a girl like her.
Five years later in 2000, Paisley and Kimberly Williams started dating. In 2002 she appeared in the video for his song, “I’m Gonna Miss Her (the Fishing Song).” Paisley and Kimberly Williams married on March 15, 2003 on the campus of Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA. Today they split their time between the Nashville suburb of Franklin and Malibu.
This Is Country Music
The perfect country-western song, according to David Allan Coe, has to mention each of the following: mama, trains, trucks, prison, and getting drunk.
In 2011, Brad Paisley counters with these ingredients for country music perfection: tractors, trucks, little towns, mama, cancer, Jesus, and “those that died defending/The old red, white, and blue.”
Each gets a plug in the title track that launches This Is Country Music — Paisley’s first album of new material since 2009’s American Saturday Night. It provides the unofficial recipe for the rest of the album’s crowd-pleasing tunes.
Something for Everyone
As one might expect from the title, This Is Country Music aims to cover all its musical bases. After the opener sets the scene, “Old Alabama” revs things up with a salute to the beer-drinking, Daisy Dukes-wearing women of the world. It’s a bit like Gretchen Wilson‘s “Redneck Woman,” told from an appreciative male perspective.
But don’t crack that Bud just yet. The mood quickly turns serious with “A Man Don’t Have to Die,” in which a church member implores a fire-and-brimstone preacher to loosen up. People are losing their jobs and ending their marriages. “There’s hell enough to go around down here,” Paisley sings. How about offering his congregation a little hope?
As if taking his own advice, Paisley follows up with the serenely silly “Camouflage,” a song that makes a convincing case for doing all your shopping at the Army surplus store. It’s one of the best tracks on the album.
Guest Stars Galore
No Nashville super-production would be complete without a little stunt-casting. And there’s no shortage of special guests here. Things get sappy with Don Henley on “Love Her Like She’s Leavin,'” overwrought with Carrie Underwood on “Remind Me,” and just plain weird with Clint Eastwood on the “Clint Eastwood” (he’s credited with “whistle”).
Faring better are the guests spots with Alabama (on the aforementioned “Old Alabama”) and a dehydrated Blake Shelton heading south-of-the-border in “Don’t Drink the Water.” The album ends on a high lonesome note with “Life’s Railway to Heaven,” an old-timey cut featuring Marty Stuart, Sheryl Crow, and Carl Jackson.
Great, but not… Perfect
There’s no absence of clever songwriting on This Is Country Music. “Toothbrush” charts a whole relationship through a few everyday items. “Working On A Tan” rubs in a gloriously bad pun amid the sunbathing. Every song belongs here, and every solo is where it’s supposed to be. But — and this isn’t necessarily a bad thing — the album can sound a little like a greatest hits compilation. Maybe it’s just me, but that’s often where my favorite songs don’t make the cut.
On Brad Paisley’s “Southern Comfort Zone” the country singer pays the usual respect to his “biscuits and gravy” upbringing. But while staying true to the usual Dixieland clichés, he makes a point to call for a broadening of horizons. After all,
“I have seen the Eiffel Tower lit up on a Paris night
I have kissed a West Coast girl underneath the Northern Lights
I know what it’s like to meet the only one like me
To take a good hard look around and be a minority”
The song is a fair example of the tensions that underlie Brad Paisley’s new album Wheelhouse, which may be at times mawkish, but is never boring.
Taking on Big Targets
On the one hand, Wheelhouse is not a huge departure for Brad Paisley. On the jumpy “Beat This Summer,” the singer waxes nostalgic for a present-day love affair that’s destined to slip into the past. On the punning “Outstanding in Our the Field” hard-partying hayseeds can turn an “old farm into the hottest weekend night spot from here to Sunset Boulevard.” The song samples Roger Miller and the torch song “Pressing on a Bruise” features a rap from Mat Kearney.
Country-rap fusion is a theme of the album, and it achieves infamy on the much maligned “Accidental Racist,” which aims for the stars and doesn’t even reach the ceiling. The Socratic dialogue between Paisley (as a misunderstood Southern boy) and LL Cool J (as a Starbucks barista carrying the weight of history on his shoulders) is a suitable format for dealing with a difficult topic; both characters can offer their perspectives without the song itself offering a solution. But Paisley is too much of an optimist for that. As both parties settle their differences on the song, they step out of what starts out as a promising character portrait and into post-racial parody.
Similarly, “Those Crazy Christians” walks an alluring tight rope between anti-Bible Belt diatribe and missionary tract, describing
“Those crazy Christians, dressed up drivin’ down my street
Get their weekly dose of guilt before they head to Applebee’s”
The song’s ambivalence is ruined by the moralizing that Paisley can’t resist and new country acts like Kacey Musgraves are, at least for the moment, able to avoid. Paisley probably understands the perils of overreaching; included on the album is the lament “I Can’t Change the World.”
The Price of Happiness
Paisley seems more in the zone when he’s singing about a favorite subject: men not just accepting the cards that life has dealt them, but exulting in their limitations. That goes for the wedding bell blues song “Tin Can on a String” and the jazzy “Death of a Single Man,” which shows the other side of the matrimonial equation. On “The Mona Lisa,” he returns to the feel-good territory of his 2006 hit “The World.”
“I feel like the frame
That gets to hold the Mona Lisa
And I don’t care
If that’s all I’ll ever be”
The love song is irresistibly sweet, and it’s a product of the same blind optimism that also resulted in the trainwreck “Accidental Racist.” That’s the paradox of Paisley, and why he remains one of the most endearing — and infuriating — artists in the country dugout.
The Best of Brad Paisley
10. “We Danced”
Arista NashvilleThis lovely ballad was the fourth and final single from Brad Paisley’s first album, Who Needs Pictures. The instrumentation in this song is very understated, featuring acoustic guitar, piano and drums. The focus is, as it should be, on the storyline, and the touching lyrics — “And from that moment, there was never any doubt. I had found the one that I had always dreamed about.” This was Brad’s second No. 1 song, and a perfect song, in my opinion, for a wedding.
9. “Me Neither”
Arista NashvilleThis rollicking tune combines Brad Paisley’s humor with a lighthearted country rock style, featuring Brad’s excellent guitar playing. We see the humor as in the song, the guy is continually shot down by the girl, but he tries to convince everyone that he has a “who cares” attitude, with each rejection. The drum-heavy choruses feature light fiddle, and we even get a taste of ragtime piano, however the song largely exists to frame the guitar work, especially the solo, which takes place in the final chorus fading out to the end. It could have been a fluff piece, but Paisley’s deadpan tongue-in-cheek approach turns it into a fun little romp.
8. “Letter To Me”
Arista NashvilleBrad Paisley was the sole songwriter on this song, and it entails events of his life. The man wishes he could write a letter to himself back when he was just 17 to tell himself things he wished he would have known back then. He mentions hugging an aunt every chance he would get. He talks about listening to his father, and knowing that he was always right, and thanking his teacher, as she always gave him extra time. Who doesn’t wish they had done certain things differently? Musically, it’s similar in tempo and style as his previous hit, “He Didn’t Have To Be,” although the storyline is very different. The instruments are understated, spotlighting the lyrics and Brad’s warm vocals.
7. “Waitin’ On a Woman”
Arista NashvilleThere is a loping mid-range tempo on this guitar-driven song, accented with steel guitar and fiddles. The story is of a young man who is sitting on a bench, when he’s approached by an elderly man, who asks him if he’s waiting for his woman. The two converse, and the elder man reveals that his lady used to always be late as well. While the lyrics show the elder man’s love for his lady, it’s done in a humorous way. Brad’s vocals are spot on, as usual, and show the tenderness for the subject. A big part of this song was the video made even more special for Brad by the fact that Andy Griffith agreed to be a part of it, playing the part of the elderly man.
6. “Little Moments”
Arista NashvilleThis different sort of love song uses a mid-range tempo to tell the story of all the “little things” his girl did to make him love her. It uses a combination of an acoustic-sounding beginning that builds by the chorus, adding to the simple guitar a fiddle and steel guitar, and the requisite electric guitar solo, showing off Brad’s excellent musicianship.
5. “He Didn’t Have To Be”
Arista NashvilleThis song has an easygoing melody telling the tale of a young boy and his single mom, who has started dating. The story is told through the boy’s viewpoint, taking him through adulthood, where he now is about to be a parent himself. As a man, he now can look back on the way his step-father treated him as his own, and he hopes he can be half the father to his own child. The song uses accents of steel guitar and fiddle, in addition to traditional instruments. It was one of Brad’s first singles, and introduced fans to Paisley as someone who had a thoughtful opinion about important topics. The song later inspired a gift book written by Paisley and Lovelace.
4. “I’m Gonna Miss Her”
Arista NashvilleThe first verse is sung with an acoustic guitar and a bit of steel guitar, as Brad leads people into the story of the song. The man loves to fish, and his girlfriend gives him an ultimatum. Fishing or her? The punch line is given as Brad sings “I’m gonna miss her when I get home…” The chorus breaks into a full band, with a party feel, as you can hear his buddies cheering him on for choosing fishing. Emphasis on electric guitars and strong steel guitar is heard from here on in, and you can’t help but chuckle at Brad’s sense of humor.
3. “When I Get Where I’m Going” (featuring Dolly Parton)
Arista NashvilleThis acoustic gospel-style song features the legendary Dolly Parton. The tempo is slower, and uses an acoustic arrangement, featuring guitar, mandolin, fiddle and drums, which perfectly puts the emphasis on the story of life after death. As with his duet with Alison Krauss, Brad and Dolly have superb harmonies in this song. I especially love on the chorus how Brad uses his falsetto, just to add the right touch to the song.
2. “Two People Fell In Love”
Arista NashvilleThis ballad tells the story of how everything begins when two people fell in love. It was the first single released from Brad’s sophomore release, Part II, and continued to show the clever way of telling a story that Brad possessed, and after the success of the first album, got people to be excited to hear even more from this new young star.
1. “Whiskey Lullaby” (featuring Alison Krauss)
Arista Nashville”Whiskey Lullaby” follows in the time-honored tradition of story songs. This acoustic ballad is a duet with the angelic-voiced Alison Krauss. The couple in the story separate after the man comes home from being in the service to find his wife with another man. He turns to the bottle, ending up drinking himself to death. After his death, the woman, filled with grief and remorse also takes to drinking, with the same result. Brad and Alison’s voices are magic together, filled with emotion in telling this tragic story.