Why does Jimmy Wayne think he's connecting with his fans?
"I think it's just the fact that I tell the truth," Wayne says. "People love to hear somebody stand on the stage and sing something that's real. I give the people that come with their hard-earned money a hundred percent of everything that I could possibly give them."
Wayne, who spent his youth living in foster homes and later as a homeless teen, says that "It's clear to me that what I've experienced, I've experienced for a reason and maybe that's my calling is to tell that story. This is it. I don't have a Plan B."
After a couple of years in Nashville working as a songwriter, Wayne landed a record deal with Dreamwork Records in 2001. His self-titled debut CD was released in 2003. The album featured four hit songs - "I Love You This Much," "You Are," "Stay Gone" and "Paper Angels" - and garnered Wayne commercial and critical acclaim.
Now with The Valory Music Company after Dreamworks shuttered in 2005, Wayne debut release for his label, Do You Believe Me Now
, is a collection of songs that he admits took some time to put together.
"It's definitely a change," Wayne says of his sophomore effort. "The [new] record that I put together only has two ballads on it and that's it. Everything else is up-tempo. I spent three years trying to find these songs that just really set me apart."
This summer, Wayne is on the road as part of Brad Paisley's "American Saturday Night Tour" playing in front of thousands of people every night. He's come a long way from his very humble beginnings, but it's obvious that one thing has never changed.
"I've always wanted to sing, write and play," Wayne says. "I played at cookouts and everything I could around my hometown. It didn't matter what it was or if it was for two or three people, I would play anywhere and everywhere."