Chris Young grew up in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, just 35 miles south of Nashville, the place his dreams of country music stardom would ultimately become a reality. GAC’s Origins: Chris Young examines Chris’ life and career with his parents, best friend, favorite teacher, fan club president, producer and record label chief sitting down to share his story. The special premieres Sunday, August 21 at 8/7 c.
“He was a determined kid, spending hours late in the evening writing songs, recording, mixing, that sort of thing and then he’d come to school tired,” said Nancy Jackson, Chris’ high school English teacher. “So when he was in class, you’d often see him begin to nod off. One day I took my hand and just sort of tapped him on the shoulder and the next thing I know, he had hit the floor. Fell out of his chair and did not wake up until he hit the floor.”
Despite sleeping in class, Chris excelled academically and starred in nearly every school musical production. He was awarded the Presidential Scholar’s Award – based on talent and academic skills – and traveled to Washington to receive his medal from the President.“I really fell in love with singing the first time I got onstage,” Chris said. “The feeling that I get when I’m singing in front of 50,000 people is the same feeling I got when I was performing in high school.”
Chris’s incredibly supportive parents traveled with him to weekend singing competitions, sewed stage clothes and even built Chris’ first CMA Music Fest booth when he was 16. By the time Chris entered college, he was performing 150 shows a year. He landed a regular gig at a club in Texas, leading him to leave school. While in Texas, he auditioned for Nashville Star, a reality TV talent show he later won. The grand prize was his deal with RCA Records.
While Chris has chalked up four straight No. 1 singles, a Grammy nomination and recently released his third album, Neon, there was a time when Chris had more No. 37s than No. 1s. The first two singles from his self-titled debut album didn’t make it past the Top 40. “His fans kept him in a record deal during that time,” his mom, Becky Harris, said. “They started paying it forward where they’d buy like 10 CDs at a time and hand them out to random people. And while he wasn’t having radio success, he was still selling records.”
In addition to interviews and behind the scenes footage from his Murfreesboro hometown, Origins: Chris Young will feature five acoustic performances. If you miss the premiere, check the schedule to catch a re-air.
Watch a preview now!