Originally published in the February 15, 2016 issue of Country Weekly magazine.
Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14, is right around the corner, and that means love is in the air. While a few of country’s loveliest couples called it quits in 2015, we’re all about spreading the love this year. From brand-new relationships to half-century-long unions, we’ve got more than 20 country music couples that Cupid has taken aim at.
The Dating Game – No one knows where these relationships will go, but that’s why you play the game.
Scotty McCreery & Gabi Dugal
Friends since elementary school, Scotty and Gabi have been dating for four years. One of the perks of having 22-year-old Scotty on your arm? Gabi gets to be in front of the camera in his music videos, including “The Trouble With Girls” and “Feelin’ It.”
Blake Shelton & Gwen Stefani
Don’t judge Blake and Gwen. After divorcing from their respective spouses in 2015, The Voice judges found comfort in each other’s company, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Let’s just hope Blake doesn’t dye his hair pink.
Lauren Alaina & Alex Hopkins
Lauren’s new single may be called “Next Boyfriend,” but her current beau is Alex Hopkins, a Southerner who made an appearance in the “Boyfriend” video. He’s also been in the spotlight on Lauren’s weekly Sealed With a Kiss videos on My Country Nation, going so far as to give Lauren a full-glam makeover.
Rules of Engagement – ’Cause if you like her, you should put a ring on it.
Cam & Adam Weaver
Yellow-hot newcomer Cam had a breakout single in 2015 with “Burning House,” but she won’t be single much longer. Cam and Adam got engaged on Sept. 5, 2015, and Cam let the world know with an Instagram post: “My rock gave me a rock! My heart’s over the moon.”
RaeLynn & Josh Davis
Former minor league baseball player Josh took RaeLynn on a scavenger hunt in October 2015 before he dropped to one knee and asked her to be his wife. Wedding bells are ringing on Feb. 27, so the “God Made Girls” singer only has a couple of weeks left before she’s off the market for good.
Tyler Farr & Hannah Freeman
If you want the blessing of the country music gods, propose at the Mother Church of Country Music. And that’s just what Tyler did in May 2015 when he popped the big question to Hannah at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium. The happy couple is slated to tie the knot in October.
The Honeymoon Phase – So far, so good!
Jason Aldean∼Brittany Kerr
It isn’t the way most couples start out—amid a flurry of rumors and speculation—but, as the saying goes, “Love prevails.” After riding out the storm side by side and getting hitched in March 2015, it’s become obvious that Jason and Brittany are as happy as two peas in a pod.
Brantley Gilbert & Amber Cochran
After 10 years of playing tag in an on-again/off-again relationship, Brantley and Amber wed in June 2015. It seems Amber was always on Brantley’s mind, however, as he used her as his inspiration for songs like “You Don’t Know Her Like I Do” and “More Than Miles.” The lesson is, don’t let the good ones get away.
William Lee Golden & Simone Staley
Like fine wine, some things take a little while to develop. The Oak Ridge Boys’ William Lee and wife Simone actually met in 1980 when she was a fan and he was already a star. After a long, winding road that included other marriages, the two said “I do” in 2015.
Baby Boom – First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes . . . oh yeah.
Jana Kramer & Michael Caussin
Jana and Michael didn’t waste any time accepting the biblical challenge to “go forth and multiply.” Just a few months after their May 2015 wedding, they announced they would be welcoming their first child into the world. In fact, by the time this article prints, the couple’s new baby girl could be here.
Charles Kelley & Cassie McConnell
Shortly after Lady Antebellum’s Charles and wife Cassie shared the good news in August 2015 that they were expecting their first child, they also shared the story of their difficulties in conceiving. Their disclosure brought us all into their lives a little more, and we cheered when Charles told us it would be a boy.
David Nail & Catherine Nail
Oh, baby! David and Catherine dropped a bomb on the press at last year’s CMA Awards when they showed up on the red carpet obviously expecting. But that wasn’t the only surprise—they shared the news that the bump housed twins. The couple welcomed twin cherubs, Lillian and Lawson, in December 2015.
5–10 Years – These couples are in family-building business, and business is good.
Eric Church & Katherine Blasingame
You’re not supposed to date your co-workers, but it has clearly worked out for Eric and Katherine. She was a music publisher when they met, trying to help “guys like him” write a hit song. They celebrated their eight-year anniversary Jan. 8, and have two young sons, Boone McCoy (4) and Tennessee Hawkins (1).
Carrie Underwood & Mike Fisher
It seems like just yesterday that this “American Girl” fell in love with a pro-hockey-playing Canadian jock, but Carrie and Mike have been married for more than five years now. When they’re not busy scoring hits (musical or bone-crushing), they’re spending quality time with their son, Isaiah Michael, who celebrates his first birthday February 27.
Luke Bryan & Caroline Bryan
Celebrating 10 years of marriage in December 2015, Luke and Caroline have their hands full with two sons, Bo and Tate, plus adopted nephew Til and two nieces, Kris and Jordan, who joined the family after Luke’s brother-in-law passed away in 2014. Luke’s happy clan is big enough to start a family band.
11–20 Years – Life has a way of changing, but these relationships are rock-solid.
Tim McGraw & Faith Hill
They were just up-and-coming country singers when they met, but now Tim and Faith are media moguls with superstar country careers, blockbuster movies and even a fragrance line under their belts. The power couple will celebrate their 20-year anniversary in October 2016, and they have three teenaged daughters: Gracie (18), Maggie (17) and Audrey (14).
Joey Martin Feek & Rory Feek
Joey and Rory have been married 13 years, and in 2014, they began a courageous and heart-breaking struggle. After the birth of their baby girl, Indiana, Joey was diagnosed with cervical cancer. Despite intense treatment, the cancer spread, and in 2015 Joey decided to enter hospice care. Still, their love and faith remain unshaken.
Garth Brooks & Trisha Yearwood
Garth and Trisha kept quiet after getting hitched in December 2005, spending most of their time raising Garth’s girls—Taylor (23), August (21) and Allie (19)—on their ranch in Oklahoma. But now that the kids have grown up and moved out, country’s sweetest sweethearts have launched a massive world tour and released new music.
25–40 Years – They’ve celebrated their golden anniversaries and they’re still shining.
Kix Brooks & Barbara Brooks
Before Kix ever hooked up with Ronnie Dunn to form Brooks & Dunn, his reigning duet partner was wife Barbara, whom he met in 1979. They tied the knot two years later in August 1981, and Kix has often told the story of oversleeping on his wedding day and barely getting to the church on time. But that little snafu hardly seemed to matter, as their timeless love has endured for close to 35 years.
Martina McBride & John McBride
Martina once released an album titled Everlasting, a word that aptly describes her 1988 marriage to husband John, one of Nashville’s most respected sound engineers. They met in Wichita, Kan., when Martina was renting studio space from John, and the two obviously hit the right notes. John eventually joined Garth Brooks’ tour in the early 1990s and Martina traveled with him, selling Garth merchandise and souvenirs. And more than 25 years later, music still binds them together.
Alan Jackson & Denise Jackson
Alan and Denise were kids in Newnan, Ga., when they met, and high school sweethearts during their teen years before they tied the knot in 1979. The waters haven’t always been smooth for Alan and Denise, even separating for a time, but they’ve moved forward with their lives to become one of country’s happiest couples.
Forever and Ever, Amen – These couples have been making it work for more than 40 years.
Charlie Daniels & Hazel Daniels
Charlie was a young buck of 27 and leader of the band The Jaguars when he married Hazel in her hometown of Tulsa, Okla., in September 1964. They went through all the typical newlywed ups and downs until Hazel encouraged Charlie to move to Nashville in the late 1960s. And you can say that their marriage has been fit as a fiddle ever since. Fittingly, they celebrated their big 5-0 with a concert in Oklahoma in 2014.
George Strait & Norma Strait
George actually eloped with his high school sweetheart, Norma, in 1971. The following year, in order to please both sets of parents, George and Norma had a “proper” wedding, as folks used to say. George credits Norma for convincing him to give music one more year before giving up the dream. Good move on his part. After nearly 45 years, George and Norma are still swinging to a happy tune.
Charley Pride & Rozene Pride
Charley aspired to play professional baseball when he first met Rozene, a cosmetologist by trade. They wed in December 1956, and Charley soon traded in his ball glove for a guitar and became a country superstar. The happy couple will celebrate their 60th anniversary this December, making the Charley–Rozene team one of the longest-running in country music history.