Even Morgan Wallen never intended to have the career he has. The 30-year-old has set touring and streaming records, quickly selling out massive venues and consistently holding multiple spots on the charts. Grateful for his success, Wallen admits that there is a downside to being the biggest star in country music right now
“Everything has gotten so, so huge,” Wallen tells Billboard. “I don’t really go to the grocery store. I have to go through back doors to go to the doctor and all that kind of stuff. I still try to hold on to as much [normalcy] as possible. I like driving, so I try to drive as much as I can by myself.”
A saving grace for Wallen is his love of hunting, which not only gives him some time away, by himself, but also provides a convenient disguise when he wants to do something in public, by leaving his camo and face paint on, emerging into the world with a ready-made disguise.
“[I can] sneak around, just wherever I can go, maybe a Mexican restaurant,” he says, adding that otherwise his life is pretty much away from the rest of the world.
“I play my shows, I hang out with my son,” he says, referring to three-year-old Indie, “and I hide pretty much. And I’m OK with that. I’m happy as hell with that.”
Wallen could have never dreamed that when he put his own spin on country music, how much that would not only change his life, but the entire genre of country music.
“I obviously have brought some of my own flavor into the space and everybody doesn’t necessarily like that, and I don’t care because I love it,” Wallen concedes. “I love being able to incorporate all the types of music that I like. If I had to sing one kind of song for two hours, I’d lose my mind.”
Wallen, who was on his way to being a professional baseball player until an injury derailed those plans, got his start by appearing on the sixth season of The Voice in 2014. Asked to sing rock songs, Wallen realized his heart was in country music, a decision that ultimately resulted in his elimination from the reality TV talent show. Showing an early propensity for being true to himself, the East Tennessee native never, ever imagined that his tenacity and authenticity would lead him to being a global superstar known around the world.
“When I started doing this, I had no intentions or expectations of becoming that guy,” Wallen acknowledges. “But I’m definitely proud of it. Especially when people say to me that they never liked country music before and now it’s [their] favorite.”
Wallen currently has a Top 5 hit with “Everything I Love.” He also has a Top 30 hit with “Mamaw’s House,” his collaboration with Thomas Rhett, and a Top 40 hit with “Man Made A Bar,” his collaboration with Eric Church.
Photo Credit: Courtesy of EB Media / Matt Paskert