Matthew McConaughey joined Justin Moore on the latest episode of the country singer’s podcast, The Justin Moore Podcast, which he hosts with his tour manager, JR. In the more than hour-long interview, Moore and McConaughey covered a variety of topics from football, to funny stories about the actor’s parents, to how his bother Pat influenced his acting career. Towards the end of the interview, McConaughey talked about one of his first gigs in the entertainment business: starring in the music video for Trisha Yearwood’s 1992 heartbreaker, “Walkaway Joe,” featuring Don Henley.
McConaughey explained that he was still attending film school at the University of Texas at the time, and he had an agent who would alert him about auditions for acting jobs near him. That agent alerted him of these jobs through a beeper, and the soon-to-be actor had no problem missing class for real-world experience.
“That pager would go off and say, ‘Hey, can you be in San Antonio in an hour and a half for a Dwight Yoakam video’ or whatever,” he shared. “And I told my teachers, ‘If I get up, I’m going. I’ll be here for the test, but trust me, I’m not going out there to mess around. I’m going out there to chase down work that I’m trying to learn here in class.’”
On this particular day, his beeper alerted him about a job for the starring role in Yearwood’s “Walkaway Joe” video, which McConaughey got. The video shows McConaughey and a female actress as they act out the story of the song — two young people falling in love and then McConaughey, or the “Walkaway Joe” in this case, leaving the girl.
“It was basically more of a modeling job,” McConaughey told Moore of the video shoot. “I think I was wearing a t-shirt like this, walking around, did a couple of things. That’s when videos were like stories — you meet the girl, you have a good time, you all go swimming in the creek, you go running hand in hand through the fields, lay around, later on chew on some straw together, maybe smell each other a little bit, end up back at the motel, not the hotel. After everything’s good and you’re laying in the lovely morning light of love last night, ol’ walkaway joe slips on out of there, sneaks on out, (singing) ‘He’s the wrong kind of paradise’.”
“We went and shot it there in central Texas in the day,” he added. “That was was one of my first gigs.”
After that first gig, McConaughey went on to become a worldwide star, with his first breakout movies being 1993’s Dazed And Confused and 1996’s A Time To Kill. Other notable movies of McConaughey’s career include How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days, The Lincoln Lawyer, Mud, Dallas Buyers Club, and many more. McConaughey talks about the making of these movies and shares lessons from his life in his New York Times best-selling book, Greenlights, released in October 2020.