Jimmy Wayne
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Jimmy Wayne

Nashville, Tennessee, United States

Nashville, Tennessee, United States
Band Comedy Country

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Music

The best kept secret in music

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Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

Jimmy Wayne's real life story reads like something out of the country songs he is famous for singing. Wayne survived a turbulent, abusive childhood. His father abandoned the family and his mother went to prison, resulting in Jimmy being shuttled to a series of foster homes. His stepfather tried to murder him and he became a homeless teen, living by his wits on the street.

A North Carolina couple took him in and encouraged his evolving love of music. From the age of 12, he had been singing and writing in a variety of styles: rock, country and even rap and opera.

Wayne worked his way through school in a textile mill, and after graduating college with an associate's degree in criminal justice, became a guard at a local prison, where he took songwriting advice from an inmate. Four years later, an audition for some talent scouts visiting from Nashville's Opryland theme park led to an offer to write songs for the Opryland Music Group's famed Acuff-Rose firm. He turned in his resignation at the prison, moved to Nashville on a Sunday morning and started writing full time that Monday.

His self-titled debut album saw two songs, Stay Gone and I Love You This Much, reach Top Ten on the Billboard country charts and two more, Paper Angels and You Are, hit the #18 spot. A second album, Do You Believe Me Now, was released in 2008 and its title track became his first Number One hit. In 2009, Wayne released a cover version of Hall & Oates' single Sara Smile, with backing vocals from Hall & Oates. It became Wayne's seventh Top 40 country single.

But Wayne, still only in his thirties, has never forgotten the children who are in the same predicament he was. On January 1, 2010, Wayne set out on a 1,700 mile solo hike from Nashville to Phoenix to raise awareness about homeless youth, more specifically, children aging out of the foster care system without having the emotional or financial support they needed to prosper as adults.

Called the "Meet Me Halfway" campaign, he walked 25 miles a day, through extreme weather conditions. His journey garnered national media attention, and he was featured in People magazine, USA Today and many other publications. He successfully completed his walk on August 1, 2010.

He continues his advocacy for children in foster care while managing a thriving music career. "I have been given this gift," he says. "And I want to use it well." Wayne says, "I don't want people to say, 'Gosh, I can't believe you walked across America.' What I would like for them to say is, 'Gosh, I can't believe there are homeless kids in America.'"