Lainey Wilson spent years “on the struggle bus” before her first hit: “I had some of the darkest days of my life”

ABC/Randy Holmes

The old saying goes that Nashville’s a ten-year town, and for Lainey Wilson, that’s true. Exactly ten years and one month since she moved to Music City, she got her first number-one country radio hit with “Things a Man Oughta Know.”

During those ten years, it often seemed like “I could not get my foot in the door [no] matter what I did. It wasn’t until year seven that I signed a publishing deal,” the singer recounts to Rolling Stone Country.

Still, she never gave up — not even during the years when she lived in a bumper-pull camper that she parked by a studio that a family friend owned.

“I had some of the darkest days of my life in that camper,” Lainey admits. “There’s a lot of days I probably should have hooked it up and drove it back to [my hometown of] Baskin [Louisiana.] I guess I am a little borderline crazy, because it never crossed my mind, even on those dark days.”

As she struggled to get her name out into the music business, the singer was working hard to make ends meet with her camper living situation. “I flooded it one time and my floor started rotting out and I had to replace the floor. You name it, I was on the struggle bus for a while,” she says.

Lainey’s poised to have an even bigger year in 2022. Her duet single with Cole Swindell, “Never Say Never,” just dropped.

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