20 Questions With Clint Black

On Dogs, His Daughter and Dale Evans

After a few years away, Clint Black is back with a new single and video, “Spend My Time.” In February, he’s releasing a new album on his new label, Equity Records. But for now, he’s spending his time answering questions from CMT.com readers about his missing guitar, scary children’s books and crispy beef tacos. Black hosts the all-new special Christmas in Cowboy Country, which debuts Friday (Dec. 5) at 10 p.m. ET/PT.

1. Close your eyes and imagine a perfect afternoon. What are you doing? Where are you?

I’m at the park with my wife and daughter. Lily is playing house and
keeps asking me to knock on the door. And so I keep knocking on the door.

2. Will you ever come out with a live album?

I’ve thought about a live album. I suppose I’ll do one someday.

3. How many dogs do you have now?

We now have two dogs — Sunny and Radar. Mokey has found a new home with no babies. She loves babies, but sometimes she forgets.

4. You look so much like Roy Rogers. Are you related to him?

I’m not related to Roy, but I can surely relate to him!

5. Do you have any funny stories about your time with Roy?

Well, Dale did tell me once that she hoped she outlived Roy because she was afraid he’d have her stuffed along with Trigger.

6. I know you produced Buddy Jewell. Which other artist would you like to produce?

I don’t really know who else. I think that’s the great mystery of it. If it ever comes about again, it’ll be something that finds me.

7. How do you stay in shape? Do you and your wife have an exercise routine?

Lisa and I work out a lot. I try to eat only as much food as needed. I think of my stomach as a fuel tank.

8. Where did your daughter’s name Lily Pearl come from? My husband has a relative named that!

Pearl came from a song I wrote when I found out we were having a baby, and Lily is just a name we always loved. There’s no family connection.

9. Is Lisa singing on your new album?

I haven’t been able to talk her onto the album … yet.

10. If you could take one thing back in life, what would it be?

I would’ve looked harder for a first manager and not settled for the first big shot that was interested in me.

11. What do you order when you go out to a Mexican restaurant?

I usually get crispy beef tacos, but I ordered a burrito the other night and a side of jalapenos.

12. As a fellow songwriter, have the ideas for songs ever stopped coming? If so, where do you find inspiration for your writing?

I stop looking for the ideas when I’ve finished writing, and then I start working on the album. Once I’ve finished the album, ideas start trying to form themselves again, and if I have nothing else to do, which is rare, I’ll write some more songs for the next album. Life inspires my songs. I think of myself as a student of the human condition, and the songs are just my latest findings.

13. Are you still looking for your missing guitar in all the pawn shops?

I’m not actively looking for my guitar that was stolen from my home, but if anyone finds a Gibson J-40 out there that looks like it’s seen its share of night clubs, write to clintblack.com, and I’ll be happy to buy it back.

14. Why do you always wear a cowboy hat at every performance?

I’ve usually worn some kind of cowboy hat throughout my life. Once I hit wearing one in the video, it became something people got attached to. I prefer the way I look with it on, but I do like to go without.

15. What kind of books do you like to read to your daughter?

We like to read Lily books that are simple and not scary. She has lots of books, and she’s always the one to decide which one to read, but we weeded out the ones we don’t like her to read.

16. Was there a defining moment when you decided to go into music as a profession, rather than just a hobby?

I was turning 17 and had to decide whether or not to join the military. I thought about the Air Force and fortunately chose the music business. I had singer’s grades in school, so it was clear they wouldn’t have given me anything interesting to do in the Air Force.

17. I love the color and the shape of your eyes. Did your daughter inherit them?

Lily has Lisa’s eyes, I think. Every now and then, I can see me in there but mostly Lisa.

18. Who are some of your favorite country artists?

I love Alison Krauss and Union Station. I think Joe Nichols is good. I’ve always been a George Strait fan.

19. Do you sing songs around the house to your wife and daughter?

We’re always singing around my house. Mostly songs Lily likes.

20. The looks between you and your wife are amazing in your videos. Are you just as much in love with her now as you were when you got married or even more so now?

We’re more in love now than ever, and we’ll be more in love tomorrow than today. That’s the whole idea of marriage. Grow closer and love more!