With a little time off from touring with Dierks Bentley, Jon Pardi headed home to Dixon, CA for a few days to relax, hang out with family and, oh yeah, inspire the senior class of his alma mater, Dixon High School, before he had to head out again to play Stagecoach.
“The kids were all excited,” Jon told us in a phone call last week, “You could really tell they were ready to graduate high school!”
In a surprise assembly for the graduating class, Jon spoke in the gymnasium about following your dreams and never giving up.
“Everybody told me it kinda lifted their spirits and stuff. It was a lot of fun. It was senior day man. Gotta give ’em some hope! They’re gonna start a new chapter of their lives.”
One of the highlights for Jon was getting to perform a few songs for the students, including a rendition of “Head over boots” that had everyone singing along. And Jon performed another song especially for his old principal that maybe *wasn’t* the best choice for a gym full of seniors.
“He (his old principal) loves AC/DC. And so I let Terry (his guitar player, Terry Lee Carroll) sing. And I wanted Terry to sing ‘You shook me all night long’. But instead, Terry sings ‘Highway to hell’, and I was like ‘hmmmm…alright, we’re just gonna go for it!'”
It’s the first time Jon has been home in awhile, and in that time, he’s become one of country music’s hottest up-and-coming stars. So we asked, was his visit different this time around?
“Um, it is, but it’s not that different. We still go out, we still see people. We went to Bud’s (pub in downtown Dixon that’s one of Jon’s old hangs) and had some dinner. But, uh, I go to bed a lot earlier, let’s put it that way.”
Jon’s next single is “Heartache on the dance floor” and as I type this on Tuesday morning, Jon and his crew are busy shooting the video in Venice Beach. “With bikini models.” Jon made sure to point out.
While he was home, Jon got to help his mom with a new litter of bulldog puppies (which Cody happens to be interested in). Hear him talk about that and why he won’t be getting one, even though he admits they’re cute. Listen below