"It's something that if you'd asked us three years ago, we would've laughed at you," says Tyler Hubbard, on being celebrated as a "game changer" by the magazine

By Danielle Anderson
Updated January 06, 2015 12:05 PM
Jeremy Cowart

A lot can change in two years. Just ask Florida Georgia Line‘s Tyler Hubbard and Brian Kelley.

The genre-stretching country duo recently topped Forbes‘ 30 Under 30 list in music, for their “blend of country, rock, electronic, hip-hop and pop – with a shot of disruptive entrepreneurialism.”

“It’s a huge honor to be named one of the 30 Under 30,” Hubbard, 27, tells the magazine. “For us, it’s something that if you’d asked us three years ago, we would’ve laughed at you.” “We were negative 30 Under 30, actually,” jokes Kelley, 29. Adds Hubbard, “We had about negative $30 in our bank account two years ago. I’m not really exaggerating.”

That’s a far cry from the $24 million the duo – who met and bonded over a love of music in 2009 as college students at Nashville’s Belmont University – raked in last year. And the pair is definitely enjoying the fruits of their labor, with each settling into new homes outside of Nashville.

“If this music thing didn’t work out, [we’d] probably still be in Nashville trying to figure out how to write songs,” says Kelley. “That was plan A, B, C, D, E, F, G.”

For the full list of outstanding musicians, including Kacey Musgraves, click here.