Jason Aldean, born Feb. 28, 1977, was raised by his mother in Macon, Ga., and spent summers with his father in Homestead, Fla. In addition to taking him to concerts by Kenny Rogers, the Gatlin Brothers, and Alabama, Aldean's father also wrote out guitar chords on notebook paper to teach him how to play. Eventually, Aldean taught himself songs from listening to the radio.
Inspired by a country music awards show on television, 14-year-old Aldean decided to try performing. His mother arranged for him to sing two songs at the VFW Hall in Macon. After that, he began performing at area talent contests and local fairs. At 15, he joined the house band at the Macon nightspot Nashville South. A year later, he bought his first vehicle with money he'd earned singing, and decided to pursue music full-time.
In 1998 after performing a showcase at an Atlanta nightclub, Warner-Chappell publishing decided to sign Aldean, leading him to make the move to Music City that same year at the age of 21. A month later, he was offered a recording contract. After a showcase at the Wildhorse Saloon in Nashville in early 2004, manager Lawrence Mathis approached him, and within five weeks secured him a record deal with Broken Bow Records.
Aldean released his self-titled debut album in 2005. Hits include "Hicktown," "Why," and "Amarillo Sky," "She's Country," and "Big Green Tractor."