Jelly Roll Missed The People’s Choice Awards Because He Was Visiting With Juveniles In Jail

Jelly Roll
Jelly Roll


Jelly Roll is a busy man these days. He’s one of the hottest up-and-coming artists in country music, being nominated for Grammys and CMA Awards, all while also working on himself with what sounds like a pretty intense weight loss journey.

And this past weekend, Jelly Roll (whose real name is Jason DeFord) was also nominated for Male Country Artist of the Year and Best New Artist.

Jelly Roll ended up taking home the fan-voted trophy for Male Country Artist of the Year…but he wasn’t there to accept the award in person.

The rapper-turned-country superstar took to social media to explain his absence from the awards ceremony – and it was for a great cause: It turns out Jelly Roll was visiting with incarcerated juveniles in his hometown, where he’s working to establish a music program in the juvenile detention center.

“I’m sorry I wasn’t there. Here’s the truth: I’m actually standing in the juvenile courthouse right now, I just walked out of the juvenile facility. We partnered with the Beat of Life to bring a music program to the kids.

This has been on my calendar for a long time. I promised these kids I was coming. I know whenever I was a kid in here I got let down a lot. I didn’t want to be one of the people letting these kids down. I had to honor my word.

I hate I wasn’t there, but don’t take me not being there as a sign of anything other than love and respect and me trying to do better for my community, baby.

Anyways, these kids wrote some big songs today, man. We’re going to work something out where y’all can start hearing what we’re working on in this juvenile, but the Jelly studio is running.”

The Beat of Life is a nonprofit organization based here in Nashville whose mission is to bring music to vulnerable populations. The group says on their website that their goal is:

“To create music programs for Nashville’s most vulnerable, challenged, and hurting populations… pairing the world’s absolutely heartbreaking statistics with the incredibly compelling evidence of music’s power to break through and possibly change it all.”

Sounds like a great mission…and a great reason to have to miss the awards.

Keep up the good work, Jelly. There will be plenty more awards for you to accept, but none will be as meaningful as the work you’re doing to help others.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock