I went to my dad when I was 17 and said, ‘I want to be a country music star.’ Which every dad loves to hear. And he said, ‘I want you to go to college.’ So we had a discussion. And I’m pretty stubborn. I’m a lot like him. And he said, ‘If you go to college and graduate, I’ll pay your first six months of rent in Nashville.’ So he bribed me.
In my case, I was born to parents who were very young, and I don’t think they were entirely ready to have a child. My dad was going to college and working two or three jobs at the same time, and my mum was working and going to school.
My dad was a Marine. He was one of the Montford Point Marines. Those are the equivalent of the Tuskegee Airmen for Marines. He’s a tough, tough guy. When I was 15 we had a fight, and I didn’t speak to him for 10 years.
Dad, I’m in some trouble. There’s been an accident and you’re going to hear all sorts of things about me from now on. Terrible things.