After the future country music star graduated from high school in 1986, he started on his 4-year university degree at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City. He decided to focus his efforts on communications and marketing – something that would serve him very well through his career!
To keep his head above water while he earned his degree, he would play at various bars and other venues around campus. Chesney never forgot about where he came from throughout his superstardom. In fact, he continuously gives back to his community. He even helped Eastern Tennessee State raise nearly $30 million so they could have a sports field put in.
Chesney got his start playing at small venues around his college campus in Tennessee. Before he had compiled enough original songs to put out his own album, he used to play covers for tips in bars. He would put the tip jar next to the stage and take requests, with a sign taped to the jar that said something along the lines of “tips appreciated.”
But apparently, he’d been asked one too many times to play “Freebird,” because the sign also made sure to include the fact that any requests for Jimmy Buffet, Freebird or James Taylor would cost the requestor $25. After he graduated, he moved to Nashville where he played in some larger venues and was eventually scouted by a recording studio.
Sleeping with Sara Evans?
Sara Evans and Kenny Chesney actually have quite a bit in common, at least, regarding their careers. They’re both hardworking country-music stars who are passionate about performing and creating. However, Evans got married and had 3 children, while Kenny went the bachelor route. Unfortunately, things between Sara and her husband Craig didn’t work out, and they went through a pretty rough divorce. In court, things got pretty nasty when they each pointed the finger at each other for sleeping around.
The singer’s lawyer brought up the fact that Sara was sure her husband was sleeping with their maid, while Craig shot back that she was surely having an affair with Chesney, among others. Kenny shrugged the whole thing off, saying they were baseless and nonsensical accusations.
No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problem
If you’re a part of Kenny’s fan club, you’re a part of the “No Shoes Nation.” The title that he gave to his devoted fans is based off his hit song, “No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems,” which was released in 2002. The song is one of Chesney’s most popular of all time and topped the Billboard Charts for several months on end. The symbol of the fan club is the skull and crossbones (pirate style) and even appears on a huge flag that Kenny often pulls out at a performance and waves around as the audience cheers.
There are two tiers to the club, a free membership level, which includes bragging rights and access to the email newsletter which provides early announcements and pre-sales, and the premium level, which costs $25/month and provides members with first access to tickets before the general public or free members.
He’s Got a Crazy-Long Playlist
Good music is a lot like poetry, in a sense that it can’t be forced, but must naturally come to those who produce it. Kenny Chesney is one of the greatest musicians of all time, and he knows more than anyone what it takes to make good tunes. That means that he’s probably got an impeccable taste when it comes to what he listens to on his own time. The country singer has a playlist of hundreds of thousands of songs that would take literal weeks to listen to back-to-back.
If you’re curious about what kind of music the great Kenny Chesney listens to, he’s got his own station on Sirius XM radio called “No Shoes Radio,” which consists of only songs that he has handpicked.