Tim McGraw, Blake Shelton Share Advice With Esquire

Esquire is 80? I would’ve guessed the men’s magazine just didn’t age. It’s that cool. So it’s no surprise that for their anniversary issue, they reached out to some of the coolest men they knew to find out the best advice they ever received and what they are most looking forward to in the days, months and years to come.

Tim McGraw‘s best advice came from another legendary country singer — Johnny Paycheck.

“He looked at me right in the eye and said, ‘Son, always go hard and fast, so when you hit the ditch, you can come out the other side,’” McGraw said.

That’s good advice unless, of course, you’re going too hard and too fast to come out at all. But McGraw said he’s mainly looking forward to is seeing his daughters “settle into their lives.”

The magazine asked the same questions of Blake Shelton. His best advice came from his dad. (Maybe it was in that letter he lost and then found 20 years later.)

“And it was simply, ‘Be patient,” Shelton said.

As for what he’s looking forward to, it sounds like it’s hunting season.

“November. It’s my favorite month of the year,” he said. “Because I like it when [expletive] dies.”

Merle Haggard said his dad gave him his best advice, too.

“My father told me to always be honest,” he said.

And what’s he’s most looking forward to?

“My next birthday,” he said.

Willie Nelson‘s best advice came from a former father-in-law.

“‘Take my advice and do what you want,’” Nelson recalled him saying.

That’s kind of like just getting advice on taking advice, but Nelson turned out all right anyway. His main goal is to continue touring.

“Getting onstage, then getting back on the bus,” he said. “Then heading somewhere else, getting onstage and getting back on the bus.”

Esquire‘s “The Life of Man” issue will be on newsstands Tuesday (Sept. 17).

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.