Jelly Roll Shares The Moment Everything Changed For Him In Jail: “Guard Knocks On The Door… You Had A Kid Today”
It’s no secret that Jelly Roll is one of the biggest up and comers in country music right now.
The former rapper turned country music singer, is one of the most authentic, candid and downright refreshing personalities in country music.
He’s truly shaking things up in Nashville.
Perhaps what he’s best known for is his deep cutting, brutally honest songwriting inspired by his teenage years to young adult life, where he spent much of his time incarcerated.
With that being said, Jelly Roll recently made an appearance on Joe Rogan’s podcast, where he explained the crime he committed for the first time ever, that landed him behind bars at the age of 15:
“This will be the first time I ever actually talked about the charge. It was a heinous crime, admittedly. It was horrible.
We robbed a couple guys for some weed, but they called the police because we took some money and stuff.
It was an armed robbery, I mean we went in there with a gun, I regret it every day of my life Joe.”
He then said that because his home state of Tennessee has a zero tolerance policy for violent offenders, he’s had to carry the un-expungable felony with him his whole life since then.
It’s kept him from getting houses, getting homeowner’s insurance, life insurance, and can’t even volunteer at the YMCA.
He also admitted that he and his wife weren’t allowed to get their dream house:
“Guard, gated community, golf course. Man I’m crying Joe, they accepted my offer, everything is going great. I’m thinking this can’t be real.
They turned me around and said no the golf course won’t let a felon be apart of the community.”
He then said that his lifestyle growing up has inspired him to do charity work with juveniles, particularly in his hometown of Nashville.
And that’s when he recalled the moment everything changed for him, and was inspired to turn his life around:
“I spent my 15th, my 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th, and 20th birthdays incarcerated. My daughter inevitably, by the grace of God, will get a car on her 16th birthday. You know like the dream sh*t, with the ribbon. It’s gonna be a big moment.
But they didn’t even give me an extra piece of cake for dinner. You know what I mean? Like I didn’t have a guard tell me like happy 15th, 16th birthday.
You don’t get a family visit. Like I missed high school completely. I think I was in high school for like… six weeks.”
However, when his daughter was born… everything changed:
And then the only sh*t that turn that around for me was Bailey. I knew I got a woman pregnant, I’m back in jail, she’s pregnant. She hates me, we’re not talking, I’m a bad human… she’s right, I was a horrible human.
And I’m sitting in there, and that guard knocks on my door May 22nd, 2008 Joe… He goes ‘you had a kid today,’ and he walked away. I still get emotional.
It’s like a Damascus road experience in the Bible. I immediately Joe, was like I’ve got to do something. I’ve got to quit this sh*t. I’ve got to figure it out.”
And figure it out, he did.
Jelly recently made his Grand Ole Opry debut, and his song “Son Of A Sinner” won Male Video of the Year, Male Breakthrough Video of the Year, and Digital-First Performance of the Year at the 2023 CMT Music Awards.
Jelly Roll will release his new album Whitsitt Chapel featuring the single “Need A Favor” on June 2, 2023.
You can check out the full conversation here:
He recently performed a new version of, “Save Me,” alongside Lainey Wilson at the 2023 ACM Awards. The duet was officially released the following day.