AGE: 34 WHY WE LOVE HIM: Because there’s nothing sexier than a man who can make you laugh. Oh, and the 6’5″ singer ain’t too bad to look at either.
With his upcoming wedding to Miranda Lambert and a new stint as a judge on the NBC singing competition The Voice, the singer is all about getting in shape. “I’m suddenly realizing my wedding pictures are going to be in magazines,” he says. “I’ve got to do whatever I can to look decent. That’s the mode I’ve been in lately-I better start getting in shape and maybe even get a haircut for this thing!” But while Miranda has hired a personal trainer to help her get ready for the wedding, Shelton is taking a more laid-back approach. “I just surround myself with people that are brutally honest. Once my crew knows they won’t get in trouble, they’re all over it. Like out on the road, my buddy will be like, “You really think you need to eat that brownie, huh fatty?” Grilled chicken salads are basically what I live on right now.” But that all ends after the wedding, he warns. “The first thing I’m going to eat afterward is chicken fried steak with mashed potatoes and gravy with biscuits. And anyone who calls me ‘chubbs’ is getting fired!”
AGE: 43 WHY WE LOVE HIM: Bad boy. Good man. What else is there to say?
He says he doesn’t like to hear his own songs or see himself on the movie screen (we respectfully disagree, Mr. McGraw), but he does like his role as husband of 14 years to country superstar Faith Hill and dad to daughters Gracie, 13, Maggie, 12, and Audrey, 9. “I like how Faith and I have built our lives and how we spend a lot of time together, just the five of us,” he says. “We’re pretty normal.” But while he’ll cop to an occasional cheeseburger or Coke float, the 200 push-ups and crunches he does each day are keeping the view anything but ordinary-even if his family doesn’t always appreciate it. “Around the house, I’m in boxer shorts and a T-shirt,” he says. “Gracie’s always like, ‘Daaad! Are you going to put some clothes on?'”
AGE: 36 WHY WE LOVE HIM: As if those blue eyes, shaggy curls and romantic lyrics weren’t enough, here are three more reasons…
He’s modest: “I used to think I looked sexy onstage. You’re singing and there’s that vibe happening in the room … then you walk off-stage and look in a mirror and you’re all red and sweaty, and you realize you look disgusting!”
His 2-year-old daughter is his stylist: “When I’m at home, Evie likes to pick out my clothes. She’ll grab a pair of blue jeans that I haven’t worn in forever and should have given away already, and a red T-shirt that’s way too big. I can’t imagine what I look like when I walk out the door, but I don’t care.”
He keeps it simple: “Last Saturday night, my wife, Cassidy, and I were trying to decide what to do. We were like, ‘Do we really want to go out on the town?’ So we went in the hot tub for a bit, then went downstairs and watched The King’s Speech and drank some wine. It sounds pathetic, but it was the perfect night.”
AGE: 33 WHY WE LOVE HIM: He knows the best way to man up is by being there for his trio of boys.
These days, Turner jokes, it’s a welcome surprise to make anyone’s hot guy list. “I sure as heck don’t feel as attractive now that I have three boys!” he says of Hampton, 4½, Colby, 21 months, and Marion, 3 months. “I miss out on sleep, and with diapering and feeding, I feel like they’re putting a lot of gray hairs on my head.” But it’s that devotion to even the dirty work of daddyhood that makes Turner such a stand-out. His still-dazzling smile and fit physique don’t hurt either: “You have to stay in shape, because these boys are always jumping on you.” While he’s grateful to be recognized, “it feels great just being a father. For me that’s praise enough.”
AGE: 25 WHY WE LOVE HIM: We thought the hat was hot, but turns out the baritone crooner is even more swoon-worthy uncovered.
Blame unruly locks for keeping Chris Young’s face hidden under a brim all these years. “I have entirely too much hair in my opinion and had some terrible hairstyles in high school, so I’d always throw on a ball cap or cowboy hat,” the singer says. But while recording his upcoming Neon album, Young decided he was ready for a new look. He dropped 30 lbs. from his 6’4″ frame by logging daily treadmill runs and cutting out pizza, got friendly with designer duds (at least for red carpet purposes-“at home I’ve gone entire days without getting out of a T-shirt that was free!”) and tried out a new do for his thick curls. But “it doesn’t change who I am,” he says. “My music sounds the same, hat or not. When I open my mouth, I’m a country singer.”
AGE: 33 WHY WE LOVE HIM: With his songwriter soul and a smokin’ live show, he inspires more than a little fandemonium.
Church’s country outlaw cool can drive a woman to desperate measures. Take the fan at a recent show who had waited for hours before doors opened to score a spot beside the stage. “She finished one of those big gulp beers and had to go to the restroom but didn’t want to give up her spot, so she went in the cup-right there as I’m playing!” he recalls. “It may have been a little too rowdy that night.” Then there was the flirtatious fan at a meet and greet who introduced her male companion as her brother. “Turned out to be her husband,” he says. “He went along with it! I guess that’s a good husband.”
AGE: 37 WHY WE LOVE HIM: Because he’s more than pretty good at singing drinking songs-and he’s a hopeless romantic!
What do you look for in a woman?
“When I was young, it was all about looks. As I get older, who a woman is means more and more. When you’re attracted to someone and then the personalities kick in and there’s chemistry, that’s hot!”
Do you consider yourself a romantic?
“I’m so romantic, it’s ridiculous! I dig a candlelight dinner and all those things you do when you’re trying to impress.”
What’s the most romantic place you’ve ever been?
“I spend a lot of my off time in Hawaii, and there’s this secret place the Hawaiian people would never let me tell you about. I camped there with a lady friend, spearing my own fish, picking a pepper from the trees to cook it with, and picking fruit for us. It was so cool. She and I had a great time.”
AGE: 34 WHY WE LOVE HIM: A rocker with a Georgia twang, his blend of tough and tender makes you wanna stay a long while.
What’s the secret to a country boy’s charm? Jason Aldean’s better at describing what it isn’t. “There’s not a lot of prettiness,” he says. “Half the time we shave, half the time we don’t. It’s not flashy.” Most importantly, “it’s not an image created in somebody’s office.” With his chin scruff, double earrings and chains (all cheap bling, he notes: “If I find a necklace at Wal-Mart for $2, I’ll wear it for years”), the singer is no one’s manufactured star. In fact, only one person’s got the power to sway his style: “My wife, Jessica, likes me to get dressed up with a suit and tie. It’s uncomfortable and so not my personality, but the fact that she likes it pulls me through.”
AGE: 41 WHY WE LOVE HIM: He turned a dire diagnosis into a crusade, found love again and is back on the charts-all with that boyish grin.
Clay Walker knows about second chances. The Texas native made his mark on the country scene with his debut album in 1993 but suffered a blow three years later when he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Since then, he founded Band Against MS to fight the disease, has raised more than $175,000 for the cause and, in 2010, worked his way back to the top of the charts with the Top 10 hit “She Won’t Be Lonely Long.” He also found love along the way with second wife Jessica, whom he married in 2007. These days he’s most at home working the horses on his Tennessee farm in faded Wranglers and work boots. “I’m less showy now about being romantic than I was when I was younger,” he says. “But my romance with my wife is the deepest experience I have ever had. We don’t have to plan it out with candles, wine, mood music. It’s deeper than that. It’s like we can be romantic with a look.” Or, perhaps, with that winning smile. “I’ve always been a happy person, and I smile a lot,” he says. “It’s comforting to my wife, and that means a lot to me.”
CHARLES & JOSH KELLEY
AGES: 29 and 31 WHY WE LOVE THEM: Soulful singing, long legs and cheeky humor run in the family for the 6’6″ Lady Antebellum star and his 6’2″ sibling.
Josh: “I tell him, ‘The only reason you were born is they thought I needed a buddy!'”
Charles: “We loved each other but fought like…brothers. When Dave [Haywood of Lady A] lived with us, he’d never seen brothers fight like we do-bickering and arguing.”
Josh: “But we’re always done with it in 5 or 10 minutes.”
Charles: “As kids we did everything together. When he started playing guitar, I made a little makeshift drum kit.”
Josh: “With pots and pans.”
Charles: “We were in a cover band in high school, but I was tall and awkward with bad skin so I never got the hot girls.”
Josh: “I killed it in high school-and so did you!”
Charles: “When did I date hot chicks? It wasn’t like our band had groupies.”
Josh: “No high school band has groupies!”