Brad Paisley was born and raised in Glen Dale, West Virginia.
Paisley is a Christian boy, through and through. His first public performance was at his church,1 and the first song he wrote, when he was twelve, was called “Born on Christmas Day” in honor of baby Jesus.2
Today, God and faith are ubiquitous themes in Paisley’s song lyrics. One song called, “No” is about how God hears your prayers, even when you don’t get what you prayed for. Any Christian can probably relate to that.
Make no mistake, every prayer you pray,/Gets answered, even though,/Sometimes, the answer is no.3
But even though Paisley is a devout Christian, he doesn’t feel like it’s his place to make judgments on those who aren’t following the same path.
To me, the best way to witness is to not spend all your time explaining to them how wrong they are on everything they are doing, but to show them how your life is working and how much peace you have. Jesus was never the least bit judgmental. I never got that feeling in reading my Bible that He ever looked at anybody with anything less than compassion and total understanding.4
Welcome to the Future
Although it might surprise some from today’s country music world, Paisley is a huge Obama supporter. His song, “Welcome to the Future” about racial progress, was inspired by Obama’s election in 2008. And the first time he played it live was in front of the president at a Fourth of July celebration at the White House.5
He received some flack from conservative fans, but it didn’t seem to bother Paisley much.
Real fans are real fans. But . . . I know there was a few people that all of the sudden I was becoming very political. And it was less about politics for me and more about things that just seemed right and wrong.6
I’m Still (Not a Gay) Guy
Paisley says that he tries not to be political,7 and you get the feeling that he’s less into the Democratic platform, and more into the fact that the United States elected a black man to the presidency.
After all, he doesn’t seem all that sensitive to the gay rights movement. His song, “I’m Still a Guy” received a lot of criticism from the gay community for being insensitive.8 Lines like these didn’t go over so well:
It’s hip now to be feminized/ But I don’t highlight my hair, I’ve still got a pair/ Yeah honey, I’m still a guy9
But Paisley doesn’t really mind the heat.
It’s a very reactive song. . . When we wrote it I wanted to capture the struggle between men and women in a playful way. . . Controversy-wise, I’m all right. Bring it on.10
- BRAD PAISLEY BIOGRAPHY. Sing 365. [↩]
- Little Known Facts About Country Singer Brad Paisley. Yahoo! Voices. [↩]
- Brad Paisley * No Lyrics. Cowboy Lyrics. [↩]
- Brad Paisley. The Phantom Tollbooth. [↩]
- Welcome to the Future. Wikipedia. [↩]
- Brad Paisley: Textbook 21st century country star. CBS. [↩]
- Brad Paisley: A different kind of cowboy. The Guardian. [↩]
- Is Brad Paisley a homophobe with latest single? After Elton. [↩]
- I’m Still a Guy Lyrics. Metro Lyrics. [↩]
- Brad Talks About “I’m Still A Guy.” Brad Paisley. [↩]