“There were only like, five kids at my school,” he added. “We all knew what each other did.” As Shelton grew older, he taught himself how to play the guitar. He wrote his first song, titled “That Girl Made a Fool Out of Me,” when he was fifteen years old.

“It was about a girl who I had a crush on in high school and who, looking back on it, honestly didn’t care too much about me. I was feeling sorry for myself, so I sat down and wrote (“That Girl Made a Fool Out of Me”). I think it’s probably in the ‘top ten of worst songs ever written in the history of the earth. Hands down, easily. It’s pitiful, trust me on this.” While at high school, Shelton became more involved with local country shows and was a regular performer in local bars, theaters, and Ada’s Opry by the time he was seventeen. Ada’s McSwainTheatre, a 560-seat venue, was one of Shelton’s favorite places to perform as a teen. “It was probably the actual reason that I ended up pursuing country music as a career,” Shelton said regarding the McSwainTheatre. During one of Shelton’s performances at the Opry, he had an opportunity to meet Mae Boren Axton, famed co-writer of Elvis Presley’s hit song “Heartbreak Hotel” and known as the “Queen Mother of Nashville.” Raised in Oklahoma, Axton became known as a guiding light for young country hopefuls, includingWillie Nelson and Dolly Parton, among others. Axton encouraged Shelton to move to Nashville to pursue his dream of becoming a famous country singer. Accepting Axton’s advice, seventeen-year-old Shelton left his hometown in 1994 to move to Nashville, Tennessee. He had only graduated high school two weeks prior.


Blake Shelton

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