Jake Owen tells SoundsLikeNashville.com that he originally wanted to be a pro golfer. “I wanted to be a golfer when I was a kid. I won my first tournament when I was 15. I thought I was gonna make it big until I got into a wakeboarding accident and had reconstructive surgery. That’s when I picked up a guitar and started playing. And I haven’t looked back since.”

Tim McGraw tells NPR.org that he was scared to death to tell his mother he was dropping out of school to pursue his dream. “I had to call my mom and let her know that I was dropping out of school, which scared me to death, because I knew she didn’t graduate high school because of me. She didn’t get the opportunities in life that she wanted because of me. When I finally got the nerve to do that, I called her and said, ‘Mom, I’m just letting you know that I’m dropping out of college and I’m moving to Nashville to play music.’ And there was silence on the line. And of course, I expected, ‘No, you’re not!’ but what I got back from my mom was, ‘Well, I’m surprised you haven’t done that already.’ And she said, ‘You need to go do it, otherwise you’ll always wonder if you could have made it.’ ”

Blake Shelton tells CMT that he’s prepared for whenever his career ends. “I’ve kind of always been prepared for when this ends, and my songs aren’t getting played anymore. I’ve always been prepared for that and I’ve braced myself for it, and I learned to accept a few years ago … that it’s coming. I’ve kept that in my mind like ‘Hey, the clock’s ticking.’”

Jason Aldean tells Music Mayhem magazine that rising gas prices really affect touring artists. “For some of the newer artists, I feel like it’s a little tougher for them because obviously it’s a big difference when you’re filling up buses. I mean, I think we’re carrying probably nine or 10 buses and probably 12 or 15 trucks, semis. So I mean, that’s a lot. That’s a big difference and it’s really probably a lot more unfortunate for newer acts that are out there and trying to really break in the game a little bit.”

Maren Morris tells CMT that she loves to listen to music while cooking. “I’ll put on some music while I’m cooking and just get lost in it. There have been times where I’ve almost burned things because I was so caught up in what I was listening to.”