Sam Hunt Opens Up About 2019 DUI Arrest: 'I Take Responsibility'
By Blake Taylor
July 29, 2020
The country singer was arrested early on the morning of November 21, 2019 after police responded to a report that a vehicle was driving the wrong way down a street in East Nashville. According to court documents, Hunt had two open containers of beer in the car with him, smelled of alcohol and had bloodshot eyes. He also handed police his credit card and his passport when asked for a drivers license. The arrest warrant indicated that Hunt's blood alcohol level was .173, more than double Tennessee's legal limit of .08.
"It happened," Hunt said in a recent interview. "People in my camp were talking about suppressing it, but why would I be afraid to talk about it? If it happens, it’s true."
He continued on to say that he was raised to respect alcohol.
"Moderation is important. I’ve never wanted to glorify it," he said. "It’s a cheap trick in country music, and I’ve always wanted to avoid that. I don’t like using [drinking] as a party song; for me, that wouldn’t be honest. I’ve never been the guy who shotguns a beer. I know people who partake that way, and I wouldn’t want to shake my finger or look down on them."
The country singer went on to share several details he remembers from the night before his early-morning arrest.
"I put myself in a position by being out, seeing friends at a show, leaving my phone in an Uber," he recalled. "We’d Uber’d all night, then went back to a friend’s house, had some pizza. I fell asleep on the couch, woke up groggy. I should’ve been more conscious, but I wasn’t. So I take responsibility."
Hunt continued on to talk about the importance of honesty when it comes to both life and music, specifically his latest studio album, Southside, which was released in April 2020.
"I didn't set out to tell a story as much as pick the best songs," Hunt said. "But then, it ended up being about me trying to walk out of the limelight, to put my life into order. It wasn't me writing from that personal place so much as writing honestly about it from experience, for anyone else trying to sort these kinds of things out."
"[Honesty] is such an important part of this music," he added. "A lot of times, it comes from the title, but you're not just writing the hook. The point you're making is intuitive. If you work from there, the hook reveals itself."
Hunt scored his seventh No. 1 hit with "Hard To Forget," his most recent single from Southside.
Photo: Getty Images