Jason Aldean is popular in the country music world — at the American Country Awards last December, the "Big Green Tractor" singer swept in all seven of his categories, including the top prize of Artist of the Year — but it seems to have taken a cheating scandal for him to garner mainstream attention.
Over the weekend, photos surfaced of the 35-year-old singer — who has been married to his high school sweetheart Jessica Ussery Aldean since 2001 — making out with one-time "American Idol" contestant Brittany Kerr at The Den in West Hollywood. In the series of pictures, which were snapped last Wednesday and obtained by TMZ, Aldean is seen kissing, touching, and otherwise cozying up to Kerr, who is an aspiring singer and a cheerleader for the Charlotte Bobcats. By Sunday night, Aldean issued an apology for cheating on his wife with whom he has two young daughters.
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"The truth is that I screwed up," Aldean wrote on Facebook. "I had too much to drink, let the party get out of hand, and acted inappropriately at a bar. I left alone, caught the bus to our next show, and that's the end of the story. I ultimately ended up embarrassing my family and myself. I'm not perfect, and I'm sorry for disappointing you guys. I really appreciate being able to work through this privately with my family and for all your continued support."
So who is Jason Aldean? Here are five things to know about the "Dirt Road Anthem" singer...
1. His wife supported him when he was trying to become a star. Aldean has said he started dating his wife when he was 17, and when he moved to Nashville, Tennessee, at 21 to pursue a career in the country music biz, she supported him by paying their bills. "She's been really supportive," he said in a 2005 interview. "She is actually the one that had a regular job and had a steady paycheck. So at least we had one steady paycheck coming in. She's been a lifesaver." Calling her his "best friend," he later told The Boot she acts as his business manager and oversees their finances. "She handles all the stuff I don't want to handle," he said. "I'm the guy who wants to play my music and meet my fans. She picks up the phone and makes the business call."
2. She also doesn't let fame go to her husband's head. Talking about what it's like to return home after touring — during which he has a team of handlers taking care of him — Aldean said his wife keeps him in line. "That lasts for about 30 minutes when I'm at home," he told HitFix.com. "My wife don't play that game. [She'll say,] 'My car needs an oil change.' 'OK, I'm on it.' I try not to be too high maintenance out here [on the road]. Obviously you've got people working for you and it is pretty ridiculous sometimes that you don't have to do stuff because I'm not used to that, I'm used to doing stuff for myself. But, yeah, as soon as I'm home, those days are over, for sure."
3. He's crazy about their two daughters. Aldean and his wife have two girls — Keeley, 9, and Kendyl, 5 — and he openly admits to doting on them. He was the one to take the girls to get their ears pierced when they were babies, telling radio station 99.5 WYCD, "I guess [Jessica] doesn't like to see them in pain." Last year, he dropped his number of tour dates from 200 to 75 so he would have more time to coach Keeley's softball team, and barbeque at home with the family. "They are older and while they do understand [it's my job], when I get ready to leave and they don't want me to, it's hard," Jason told The Boot. "When I'm walking out the door they're not very happy."
4. He collaborated with Kelly Clarkson. He has another "American Idol" connection — and it's to Season 1 winner Kelly Clarkson. The songstress lent her voice to his hit "Don't You Wanna Stay." While talking about Aldean to People magazine last year, Clarkson said, "He does everything for the right reasons. He's a family dude."
5. He tells a tall tale about his scar, but here's the truth: Aldean, who is rarely seen without his cowboy hat, has a scar that starts on his forehead and extends up into his hairline several inches. Though he has previously said that he received the injury from "a beer bottle," the truth is a lot less dramatic. He recently revealed that while playing with his cousin back when he was 11, he tripped over a rug and fell into a door frame, cutting his head. "The story [I made up] sounds better," Aldean told 99.5 WYCD. "It's a lot cooler."
With his five California tour dates over, Aldean has three weeks off before his next show. Presumably he's spending it at home on his 20-acre spread south of Nashville taking time to work out his family drama privately as he said he would. As for Kerr, who is reportedly single, she's laying low after being named the "other woman" in the cheating scandal. She even deleted her Twitter account after getting a flurry of hateful messages from Aldean fans.
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