Dierks Bentley Reflects on His Favorite Celebrity Meetings
Dierks Bentley has undoubtedly left many of his fans starstruck after a chance encounter, but he admits he still gets starstruck as well. The 'Drunk on a Plane' singer recalls a few celebrity meetings that have left him nearly speechless, including one with two of his favorite female singers.
"Alison Krauss is probably my Number One," Bentley recalls to Rolling Stone Country. "She came into the studio to sing on my first record. Dolly Parton was there, too. My dog Jake ran up to Dolly Parton, and he put his nose up her skirt. We were like, 'Oh my God, don't do that.' I didn't know Dolly, and she said, 'Watch out there little doggie, don't start something you can't finish.'"
The Arizona native says his first conversation with the King of Country also left him in awe, even though it was brief.
"The first time I met George Strait was in April of 2004 on tour," he recounts. "He was walking down the hallway, and I got the nerve up to say hi to him. He was getting ready to go onstage, and I was with my band in the dressing room, and I said, 'I'm going to do it. I'm going to make my move.'
"I said, 'George, hey, it's Dierks. I'm so excited to be a part of this tour.' He had his [musician earplugs] in, and he said, 'I can't hear you, I got my ears in. I'll talk to you later,' and he walked onstage," Bentley adds. "That was big time fangirling."
But the 38-year-old, who grew up listening to traditional country music, was perhaps most impacted by a conversation he had with country music legend Merle Haggard.
"I hung out with Merle Haggard on his bus, which sort of freaks me out," he says. "It was him and his wife. We played with Merle in Oklahoma City. I'm from Arizona, and we talked about Arizona, and he remembered playing for two dollars a day down there at a bar. I also became friends with George Jones, which kind of freaks me out."
Bentley, who also cites Sheryl Crow, Michael Jordan and Willie Nelson among the stars that have left him speechless, will give his fans plenty of chances to have their own celebrity encounters with him as he continues his Riser Tour. See all of his upcoming concerts here.