“Look What God Gave Her” singer Thomas Rhett and his wife Lauren have come to be known for sharing one of the most heartwarming marriages in country music — and according to him, it’s partly thanks to her dad.
Speaking with HITS Daily Double magazine, the star opened up about his childhood as the son of an aspiring country star (Rhett Akins) and how his latest album, Center Point Road, traces that time. The conversation soon turned to his relationship with Lauren — since the pair have been in each other’s lives since grade school — and how they got together.
Apparently, TR and Lauren found themselves at a graduation party for her sister when the romance started in earnest.
“It was a sliding-door moment, where it could’ve gone the other way,” Rhett says. We were dating other people. In another world, we might have married them. But there was always something different about Lauren, and we both felt it, but we never figured it out.”
The two were just friends at the time — and had been since the sixth grade — but Rhett didn’t want things to stay that way. Even so, he needed a little encouragement.
“I’d loved that girl since high school, and I told her father how I felt,” Rhett explains. “He said, ‘If you don’t tell her, I’m going to.’ It was a total Ryan Gosling moment.
“I said to her, ‘I just want to kiss you one time. If you don’t feel anything, we can go back to being friends,'” the hitmaker goes on. “I’ve learned this: It’s wise to confront things instead of holding them in. That creates resistance instead of resolution.”
It may go without saying, but Lauren’s dad seems to have known what he was talking about. She and TR’s partnership has formed the bedrock of Rhett’s rise to stardom, inspiring romantic, career-defining songs like “Die a Happy Man,” “Star of the Show,” “Unforgettable” and many of the tracks on new album — including his most recent No.1, “Look What God Gave Her.” Along the way, Rhett has been named the ACM Male Vocalist of the Year (twice, in fact), and more importantly, the couple have become parents to two happy children, Ada James and Willa Gray.