Tim McGraw Pawned High School Ring for Guitar

"I Was Hooked From Then On"

When I think of Tim McGraw, I think of his songs. And the stories they tell. And all those lyrics I know by heart. But the guitar? That’s not usually the first thing on my mind when I picture him onstage.

And yet, a guitar is how it all started for him.

In a recent interview, he said that when he was a freshman in college, he walked into a pawn shop — and that experience kind of changed everything.

“I took my high school ring and pawned it and bought a guitar,” he recalled. “And I learned how to play 50 songs over that summer and started playing for tips at the end of that summer. And I was hooked from then on, and I knew that’s what I wanted to do.”

That didn’t take long. Less than 10 years after that trip to the pawn show, McGraw was releasing his self-titled debut album in 1993.

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