All About Country Star Eric Church

"Mr. Misunderstood"

Eric Church at 2017 CMA Music Festival - Day 2
Erika Goldring / Getty Images

Kenneth Eric Church was born on May 3, 1977, in Granite Falls, NC. He is best known for writing and singing contemporary country songs. His style is comparable to Waylon Jennings, Jamey Johnson, and  Jason Aldean.

As a teenager, he bought a guitar and taught himself to play. He also started writing songs. By the time he reached his junior year in high school, he had a regular gig at a local bar.

After high school, Church attended Appalachian State University, where he majored in marketing and obtained his degree. He made a deal with his father that in return for graduating from college, his father would pay for his first six months in Nashville. He used this time to make contacts in town, and eventually landed a publishing deal at Sony/ATV Tree Publishing.

He was introduced to producer Jay Joyce, and after playing a showcase, was signed by Capitol Records, with Joyce producing his album. Sinners Like Me was released in 2006, and the first single, "How 'Bout You" became his first Top 20 hit. Two additional singles also made the Top 20 -- "Two Pink Lines" and "Guys Like Me."

Church released his sophomore album, Carolina in 2009. The lead single called "Love Your Love the Most" is moving up the country charts. He released subsequent albums in 2011, 2013, 2014, and 2015. More recent hits included "Mr. Misunderstood" and "Kill a Word."

On January 8, 2008, Church got married to music publisher Katherine Blasingame. On the big day, he performed "You Make It Look So Easy," a song he wrote for her. They welcomed two children in 2011 and 2015. 

According to Church, he finds his inspiration for songwriting in many places. After seeing the movie The Green Mile, he was inspired to write the song "Lightning." His musical influences include Waylon Jennings, Merle Haggard, and John Prine. 

"For me it is. It’s usually doing a lot of writing and then whittling those songs down, and a lot of time in the studio. This time, in every possible way, it was totally the opposite. I had never written like that in my life. It was almost embarrassing, because I came home every day thinking, Maybe I’m losing my edge, because I really think these songs are great. And they can’t be great every day. Then the recording process was nothing. It fell together in no time. When it was over, I wished we could’ve kept going," he said in an interview with Vulture, when asked about his songwriting process.

Fans of the singer typically admire his signature aviator sunglasses, which Church says he often wears to protect his contact lenses from drying out. Or it could be because he is an avid fan of cannabis, which he sings about in"Smoke a Little Smoke", "The Joint", and "I'm Gettin' Stoned."

Popular Eric Church Songs

  • "Two Pink Lines"
  • "Carolina"
  • "Love Your Love the Most"
  • "Lightning"
  • "Give Me Back My Hometown"
  • "Guys Like Me"
  • "Kill a Word"
  • "Mr. Misunderstood"