Hanging out with Aaron Tippin
by CAROLYN MAGNER
aron Tippin, known as
“Hillbilly Hercules” in the
country music business, has
sold more than 5 million records
and had more than 30 singles reach
the Billboard Hot Country chart.
His 2008 album, “In Overdrive,” was
a salute to American truckers and
included many now-classic trucking
songs. He, too, is loved by truckers for his patriotic songs, such as
“Where the Stars and Stripes and the
Eagle Fly,” and for his appearances at
trucking shows and truckstop events
around the country. Tippin, also a
pilot, farmer, winemaker, outdoorsman, competitive bodybuilder and
devoted family man, took a break
from his “Boots and Roots” tour to
talk with Truckers News.
Truckers News: How is the tour going?
Aaron Tippin: It’s going great.
Sammy Kershaw and Joe Difﬁe are a
hoot to sing with. Get the three of us
together and we are a group of singing comedians. It’s more like a variety
show than a concert.
TN: Truckers believe your music
speaks to them. Why are you so close
to the trucking culture?
AT: I was a trucker, or a “highway
hero” as I call them. I don’t drive a
big rig now, but I do have a current
set of CDLs and I drive my own
bus. “In Overdrive” is an album I
produced and released because of
my concern that country music
had turned its back on its highway
heroes. Seems like somewhere
along the line trucking music got
shoved off the country music wagon. I don’t understand exactly why.
The trucks are still out there. And
they’re busier than ever keeping
20 | TRUCKERS NEWS | MAY 2012
What would you want to ask Aaron
Tippin? Post your questions for him on
our Facebook page (facebook.com/
truckersnewsmag) anytime before
May 10 at 10 p.m. EDT.
Special thanks to our sponsor
America rolling. I know the folks
who work and live in the trucking
world still love this music — and so
do most fans of real country music.
That album launches my crusade to
bring the music back.
TN: We can’t listen to “Where the
Stars and Stripes and the Eagle Fly”
without getting chills. How did you
ﬁnd the right words for such a patriotic song?
AT: I’ve been overseas for the past 10
years performing for the troops. It’s
easy to sing it to them; they deserve
a song. The right words come when
you see our guys and gals demonstrating that they are the best and
most professional warriors on the
face of the planet!
TN: Tell us about “In Overdrive.”
All these songs have a truck driving
AT: “In Overdrive” salutes America’s
truck drivers. It features the trucker
classics “East Bound And Down,”
“Drivin’ My Life Away,” “Prisoner
Of The Highway,” “Girl On The
Billboard,” “Movin’ On,” “The White
Night,” “Roll On,” “Truck Drivin’
Man,” “Long White Line,” “Drivin’
Fool” and “Danger Dave.”
TN: “Working Man’s PhD” might be
the perfect work song. What’s your
favorite trucking-themed song?
AT: When I sing about the worth and
dignity of common labor – which is
the topic of “Working Man’s PhD,” I
draw from my own experiences. I did
mostly manual labor to support my
musical career, and that’s what’s led
to the blue-collar feel in my songs.
Growing up in South Carolina, I
worked on farms and in my dad’s
aviation business. I grew up with
very hands-on jobs. I was raised and
taught to work hard. In this hightech, high-speed society, somewhere
along the line we got the message
that if we’re not a brain surgeon or
an astronaut, we really shouldn’t be
proud of ourselves. “Working Man’s
PhD” is proof that there is pride in
good American work.
TN: Are you recognized when you go
AT: I get recognized more in my
Carhartts than dressed up in a tuxedo
for the Country Music Awards.
Read the rest
of the interview
Tippin by scanning this QR
code with your
smartphone or tablet. Or visit