The country singer recently opened up on Southern Living's Biscuits & Jam podcast about his early career, family and life at home with girlfriend Erica Hartlein and his daughters Paris and Pearl

By Morgan Smith
June 02, 2020 10:30 AM
Credit: Mike Coppola/Getty

Jake Owen is counting his blessings.

For the inaugural episode of Southern Living's Biscuits & Jam podcast, launching Tuesday, the country singer opened up about his early career, family and life at home amid the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Owen, 38, and his girlfriend Erica Hartlein welcomed their first child together, daughter Paris Hartley, last April. The “Down to the Honkytonk” singer is also a father to 7-year-old Olive Pearl (who goes by her middle name, Pearl) — from his previous marriage to Lacey Buchanan.

"I can't tell you how much this last month … being home every day and the simple things of watching my little girl, as a 1-year-old, crack up laughing in the morning while we're feeding her a bottle," Owen tells Southern Living Editor-in-Chief Sid Evans. "Usually I'd be calling her from wherever, from a bus, a parking lot … it's been a really big blessing."

Erica Hartlein and baby Paris
| Credit: Jake Owen/Instagram

Owen adds that self-isolation has been great for his creativity and he's been writing songs "like every day."

The singer’s sixth studio album, Greetings from … Jake, was released last year and features vocals from Kid Rock and Lele Pons. Next, he was set to join Lady Antebellum on their 2020 Ocean Tour, which has been canceled due to the ongoing pandemic.

Owen reveals he doesn't mind the break from tour life.

"I don't feel like a caged animal," he says on the podcast. "I almost feel sometimes on the road like I'm a circus animal that's in a cage that, come showtime, they open up the cage, and you go out into the arena and you go do your little thing and then all of a sudden they're like 'Okay!' … and the tour manager walks his animal back to the cage and they shut the door and then they roll you to the next city and you get out and do it again."

He continues: "I haven't been this happy in 15 years, which is weird to say in a time like now, but … I'm hoping with this virus and everything that's happening is that it breeds that same love and energy into people of understanding that life is fragile and … let's start taking care of everyone around us more."