Almost no one sees it coming when someone breaks up especially if they’re your favorite artist. Like Brooks and Dunn famously singing about a love lost and sitting alone in a bar under a neon moon, we would know that love is a very fickle thing. It has the tendency to fall apart and break, just as much as it has the viscosity and flow to create very magical unions. It could last, or it could not. But whenever it ends, almost no one sees it coming and everyone is just in a state of shock.
From Miranda and Blake’s very public break up all the way to Shania’s betrayal, scroll through the list to see the top 10 picks for some of country music’s most shocking breakups!
Jerrod Niemann and Morgan Petek
This is the most recent split that has rocked the country music scene. Nash Country Daily has confirmed that country crooner Jerrod Niemann and wife Morgan Petek has ended their four-year marriage. The couple married in the fall of 2014 in Puerto Rico. They do not have children together.
Petek was the one who filed for divorce way back 18th of June, 2018 citing ‘irreconcilable differences’ as the reason for the split. Their divorce became final on the 17th of December, 2018.
The couple released a statement to PEOPLE about their recent split.
“After spending over a decade together, we have decided to move forward separately. We have learned and grown into the people we are today. We wish each other all the best in the future.”
The final divorce decree stated that Niemann paid Petek a “$170,000 cash lump sum.” Both were able to retain their personal cars. The total possession of their Nashville house went to Petek, while Niemann was awarded assets in a family trust which included a Nashville property.
Niemann released his most recent album entitled “This Ride” in 2017. In his decade long career, he has had a trio of Top 10’s, which includes “What Do You Want,” “Lover, Lover,” and “Drink to That All Night.”
Miranda Lambert and Blake Shelton
This pairing has been one of the most beloved country power couples during its time. There was just a certain sense of charm between the pint-sized fireball and the tall goofy cowboy. Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert’s relationship lasted for 8 years. The love affair started way back when they had a connection in 2005 with that iconic duet. Shelton proposed in 2010, and they married in 2011 and split in 2015.
The whole country music world was shocked when the announcement broke on the 20th of July, 2015. What was more shocking was that at the day that the reigning king and queen of country music announced that they were divorcing, it was official starting that day too. Everybody was heartbroken!
In a statement, they expressed that this was “not the future that we envisioned.” And that it was “with heavy hearts that we move forward separately.”
The divorce wasn’t neatly tucked under the rug either. The rumor mill was working overtime with possible theories about why the country power couple split. From cheating to marital strains, the grapevine definitely had a field day when the news exploded.
Kenny Chesney and Renee Zellweger
It was a whirlwind romance for the actress Renee Zellweger back in 2005. She had just recently split with white stripes frontman Jack White when she decided to jump another gun and married country superstar Kenny Chesney. Apparently, the love fizzled out just as quick, as the couple filed for divorce just five short months after their union.
Zellweger cited “fraud” as the reason for their divorce, which stirred up some pretty dramatic theories on the internet; particularly, that of Chesney being gay. Zellweger had issued a statement clarifying that the term “fraud” was used as more of a legal term, and not as a reflection of Chesney’s character.
In 2007, Chesney opened up about the divorce and allegations about his sexuality in an interview with Anderson Cooper. He said he refrained from speaking out because he didn’t have to prove to anybody that he was gay. And at the same time, he didn’t want to draw more attention to the allegations. Chesney also cited that the reason for the split was more personal, and neither he nor Zellweger was keen to share their reasons.
Zellweger has also addressed the allegations in an interview with The Advocate.
“That made me sad. It made me sad that somehow people were using that as a way to be cruel and calling someone gay as a pejorative , which has fateful consequences. Of course, there’s the bigger-picture problem of why anyone had to make up a story at all.”
Kimberly Perry and J.P Arencibia
Perry and Arencibia officially met in the spring of 2012 at the Florida Strawberry Festival. The former baseball player was immediately enamored with her and then asked their mutual friends to set them up for a date. After a year, he proposed. And in 2014, they were wed at the First Presbyterian Church in Greenville, Tennessee. They even had a star-studded wedding, which was attended by country stars including Perry’s bandmates, Carrie Underwood, Miranda Lambert, and Blake Shelton.
Shortly after the announcement of their divorce, Perry released a short statement on her Instagram account.
“Yes, sadly it’s true, my marriage has come to an end. I know that beauty will come from these ashes and, as always, I want to thank you all for your love and support. I’ll be in touch soon.”
Jason Aldean and Jessica Ussery
Things were not looking up for Jason Aldean back in 2013 when he was caught cheating on his then-wife Jessica Ussery with former American Idol contestant Brittany Kerr. After 12 years of marriage, they called it quit after seven months of photos of Aldean kissing Kerr surfaced.
The country star was quick to issue a public apology on his Twitter account.
“I would like to sincerely apologise to everyone that has been affected by this, including my friends & family. The truth is that I screwed up. I had too much to drink, let the party get out of hand and acted inappropriately at a bar. I left alone, caught the bus to our next show and that’s the end of the story. I ultimately ended up embarrassing my family and myself.”
Aldean and his childhood sweetheart have been rumored to have already had marital problems prior to the kissing fiasco. They have tried to fix their tumultuous relationship, but the scandal seemed to be the last straw. Aldean ended up marrying Kerr two years after the divorce.
Shania Twain and Mutt Lange
It was the betrayal of the highest order for Shania Twain to find out that her husband of 16 years was gallivanting behind her back with none other than Marie-Anne Thiebaud, one of her closest friends. Though the split was not only the end of a marriage, it was also the end of one of the most profitable partnerships in music. It was Lange who helped reinvent and reignite her career.
But what was more surprising was how the tumultuous happenings ended. Twain and Lange finalized their divorce in 2010. And afterward, the “Man, I Feel Like a Woman!” singer married Thiebaud’s ex-husband Frédéric Thiébaud. What a twist ending! And when asked if she still had contact with her former friend, this was what she had to say:
“I’m not even really confused because it’s obvious life just has to play out the way it’s meant to,” Twain said at the time, “and how can I complain with the way it ended up?”
Reba McEntire and Narvel Blackstock
Country fans were not the only ones who were shocked by the news of the end of Reba McEntire and Narvel Blackstock’s marriage. Even the country icon herself was not for the idea of splitting up. She candidly tells CMT all about it in an interview.
“The divorce was not my idea. I didn’t want it in any shape, form or fashion. So it was really hard to make the adjustment when someone’s not happy. I just want everybody to be happy in their lives because our lives are too short to be miserable. I just thought it was the best thing to take my marbles and go play somewhere else, is what daddy used to always say.”
Their professional relationship started in 1980 when the former couple began working together. But their professional relationship eventually blossomed into a friendship and then into a very intense romantic relationship. In 1989, the pair married on a boat during a private ceremony. And in 1990, they welcomed their now race car driver Shelby.
McEntire expressed that she leaned on her faith for strength to get through the painful divorce.
“The thing that got me through this change in life, is number one, God,” she told Alan. “I prayed every day to help me have the strength to move one foot in front of the other, and continue on with what I’m supposed to be doing … and then with my team and my friends, my family, my girlfriends.”
She also emphasized that she has a lot of things to be thankful for in her life.
“You know, you just got to have a great team of people around you that you love, and they love you, and I’m very blessed to have those people. I thank God for it all.”
Trace and Rhonda Adkins
2014 certainly was not the year for Trace Adkins. After a trip to rehab for alcoholism in January, and the loss of his father in February, his wife Rhonda Adkins filed for divorce after almost 17 years of marriage. Rhonda Adkins filed for divorce in Nashville on the 25th of March, citing irreconcilable differences as the primary reason. The couple married back in 1997.
There had been a statement from the Adkins’ reps that was released after there were rumors circulating that the divorce has been called off.
“The Adkins have settled their divorce amicably. Rhonda and Trace made this decision together in the best interest of their family. All that remains is for the court to approve the agreements that have been executed by them both.”
Another message was released on the 27th of May regarding the split,
“Trace and Rhonda are united in ensuring that their children’s interests come first. They thank everyone for respecting their privacy as they work through this personal matter together.”
Rhonda requested for primary custody of the couple’s three children, as well as child support, alimony, and the payment of her legal fees. Rhonda also requested that she would be named the sole beneficiary of Trace’s life insurance policy, in a report according to TMZ.
LeAnn Rimes and Dean Sheremet
Their marriage lasted for about 7 years when the news about LeAnn Rimes and Dean Sheremet’s divorce broke out. It was done shortly after rumors started to circle around that Rimes was having an affair with actor Eddie Cibrian, who was also at that time married. Rine and Sheremet were just 19 and 21 years old, respectively, when they got married way back in 2002.
They both released a statement regarding their tough decision to split up.
“This decision was amicable, and we remain committed and caring friends with great admiration for one another.”
At some point, Rimes and Sheremet expressed to PEOPLE magazine that their relationship just simply run its course and it was the inevitable time to end.
Maybe they just grew up and they weren’t in the same place anymore. I don’t think that’s unusual considering how young they were when they got married, and the business they’re in.”
Later, Rimes married Cibrian two years after her split with her Sheremet. And Sheremet had been married to Sarah Silver, before ending a five-year marriage with her as well.
George Jones and Tammy Wynette
Perhaps the granddaddy of all country music breakups is from the power couple that George Jones and Tammy Wynette made. The marriage even earned Wynette the title of “First Lady of Country Music.” What may look like a picture perfect life making wonderful music together, was nothing short of tumultuous in the background. The two were married in February of 1969 and had divorced just six years later. The incident that allegedly sparked the split involved a drunk Jones and Wynette with a loaded rifle.
Despite the famous, yet somewhat half-baked duets, the marriage eventually dissolved with Wynette being the one to file it. In her autobiography entitled “Stand By Your Man,” she claimed that Jones used to beat her. And at one point, he fired a shotgun at her. All these allegations were denied by Jones.
They eventually recorded songs about their relationship with each other, until they reunited for their final collaboration together, an album entitled “One.”