The country music star and longtime The Voice judge has built himself quite the career in the country music. Cranking out radio hit after hit, #1 album after #1 album, he’s got a number of Ol’ Red Bars, he’s got a big-ass house in Los Angeles now… for a while, he was the biggest thing in country music.
Personally, I think it all went south when he cut off the mullet, but hey, it could be a lot worse.
But now, at 45 years old… the better years of Blake’s career are in the rearview mirror, and he knows it.
And rather than dragging it out as long as he can… he’s gonna hang it up on his own terms.
In a Country Radio Seminar interview with Country Countdown USA’s Lon Helton, Blake admitted that he’s aware that the clock is ticking and that his time might almost be up.
In fact, he prepared for it a long time ago:
“I’ve always been prepared for when this ends and my song doesn’t get played anymore, and it’s over… it’s always over at some point. I’ve always been prepared for that and I’ve braced myself for it. I learned to accept it a few years ago, maybe three or four or five years ago that it’s coming.
The clock is ticking…people are going to get tired of you winning the awards. They’re going to get tired of you having number one, after number one, after number one, and they may not be mad at you, but they’ve already got two or three of your albums. How many albums do I need by Blake Shelton?”
He went on to say that the moment he stops feeling relevant, that’s the moment he’ll stop making records:
“And you have to be honest with yourself and you can’t believe that this is going to go on forever because it’s not, so to answer your question, I want to make great records and the moment that I feel like I’m really not that relevant anymore, I don’t think I want to make them anymore.
The clock’s ticking… I’m not somebody that’s ever going to beat my head against the wall, because this room, these people, this industry has given me way, way more than I ever deserved, and I know that and I’m thankful and I’m proud of that.”
But at the end of the day, Blake has accomplished everything he’s set out to accomplish in this business and more (more than anyone really can hope to), and even if it all ended tomorrow, he says he’d be nothing but grateful:
“When it’s my time to make room for somebody else, the last thing I want to do is keep them screaming to keep my spot because, you played that video from 20 years ago, I’m still here now…. so whenever that is, look, there’s not one complaint that I could have.
I don’t wanna sell out stadiums, I don’t care about that, I don’t care about winning awards… my award is when I look back at the last 20 years of my life and say, ‘man, how the fuck did that just happen?'”
So, how long before Blake actually retires? It’s hard to say…
His most recent album Body Language (terrible title in my opinion) was his first not to top the charts since 2011, so it may be the beginning of the end.
That being said, he’s still selling out arenas, still on The Voice, and just about every song he puts out goes #1. So… I’d say he still has a few years left in the tank.
Still, for my money… that debut single was the best song he ever put out:
Miranda Lambert Says Living In L.A. “Taught Me Hollywood Is Not Anything I Want To Be Part Of”
In a recent interview with the LA Times (around the album’s release), Miranda detailed parts of her journey so far and how she’s been able to remain at the forefront of mainstream country music for so long by doing it her own way.
Of course, it hasn’t come without a few bumps in the road, and that includes her extremely public divorce from Blake Shelton back in 2015. At the time, you couldn’t step foot into any sort of store without seeing one (or both) oof their faces plastered on the front page of a magazine with some sort of salacious gossip or spin to the divorce.
Blake has since remarried fellow The Voice coach Gwen Stefani and Miranda is now married to former NYPD officer Brendan McLoughlin, but Miranda recalls what “a shock to [her] system,” it was when she moved part-time to Hollywood with Blake and really experienced all of that tabloid scrutiny for the first time:
“I’m a Scorpio, so I’m already very private and protective. And choosing the job I chose… I mean, I get onstage, I’m in front of people.
But I didn’t choose random photos of moments when I wasn’t at work.”
With Nashville being basically the opposite of LA (in terms of paparazzi at least), she says they’ve run TMZ off more than once in Music City:
“TMZ has tried to come to Nashville like three times, and we keep running them out. We’re like, ‘Nope, not here.’”
She did learn a valuable lesson from her time there, though, that you’ve probably heard plenty of other country artists echo in the past (like Cody Johnson, for example):
“It taught me that Hollywood is not anything I want to be part of.”
Blake and Miranda were married in 2011, and Blake started his gig on The Voice that same year. Of course, there’s an endless supply of rumors in terms of what really went down between them, but ultimately, we did end up with an incredible record from Miranda in The Weight Of These Wings.
But she had to go through Hell to get there, saying the whole ordeal was:
“Horrible… like the death of something.”
She’s clearly since moved on, delivering a much lighter sentiment and feeling on Palomino (and even her 2019 Wildcard), but the trend of the “divorce album” is still alive and well.
Kacey Musgraves and Carly Pearce put out Star-Crossed and 29: Written In Stone in 2021, respectively, but Miranda says they get one good year to wallow and live in that space, and then it’s time to move on:
“I see all these women getting divorced, and I’m like, ‘You got one year, then no more wallowing. Let’s cry these tears and move on.'”
I can’t lie and say I don’t live for a good divorce record, but I think Miranda’s logic is spot on, and no on should live in that sad space forever… like she said before, it’s no way to be, even for the sake of “art”.