So much is happening for YouTube sensation Jacob Whitesides. Not only is the pop singer and songwriter a force to reckoned with on social media (he has a huge following), but he has just released his debut EP A Piece of Me and he’s on tour with Fifth Harmony. Now it’s time to get to know him a little better.
SheKnows: What do you love so much about cats? Tell us a story about one of your cats.
Jacob Whitesides: I’ve always been the biggest cat guy, never really been into dogs. I remember when I was in first grade I played football at a community field, and attached to the field was an animal shelter. My mom promised me if I scored a certain amount of touchdowns that game she would let me adopt a cat from the shelter, and I did. I now have six cats who run around my house all the time. It’s most definitely a farm.
SK: Who’s the most important person in your life right now?
JW: I believe my mom will always be the most important person in my life. When I first started pursuing a career in singing she was single and working two jobs, but somehow always managed to get me where I needed to be all the time. She’s always had so much faith in me, and I don’t think I would be anywhere without her.
SK: What’s the goofiest thing you’ve ever done?
JW: I have done an incredible amount of goofy things, especially on the road. I once was given a onesie from an awesome fan at one of my shows. Later that night I wore the onesie into the scariest truck stop ever. I got a lot of creepy looks from a lot of old truckers and feared for my life.
SK: Tell us about your song “Rumors” — what experience have you had with rumors?
JW: Rumors are one of the hardest things to deal with, especially when you have such a strong social media base. All it takes for something to spread like wildfire is one picture or false tweet and all of a sudden everyone believes it. “Rumors” is such an important song for me because it is basically an invitation for all of the real fans to step up and not to believe the silly things that go around.
SK: What makes the song “Ohio” the most personal one on your EP?
JW: Ohio is by far one of the most personal songs on the EP, and was the most difficult to open up about because it is about my dad. I think a lot of the best songs out in the music world are songs about deeply personal experiences. Going into writing the EP, I never thought the subject of my dad would come up through the process. My parents have been split up for close to three years now, and I’ve not spoken to my dad since then, so it was nice, once I got over being uncomfortable about the subject, to finally let myself open up and create such an emotional, heartfelt song.
SK: What will fans learn about you through your EP album, A Piece of Me?
JW: Fans will finally hear the direction I am going in with my music and writing. Transitioning from a cover artist into a credible singer/songwriter is tricky for a lot of people, and was tricky for me in the beginning. I’m so glad I had the chance to create an EP that I’m super-happy with. I’ve always been very passionate about making music that not only my fans will enjoy, but that I can enjoy as well.
SK: What’s one common misconception fans have about you?
JW: I believe fans sometimes forget that regardless of how many followers I have, or how many favorites my pictures get, some of the things they say are hurtful. The majority of the time they’re just being funny, but I’m still an insecure dude.
SK: Do you ever find fame weird? I mean… people wanting shoes you wore over and over again? That’s intense.
JW: I don’t feel famous. I’m just thankful people enjoy listening to my music and what I want to say.
SK: What’s the biggest challenge you’ve encountered in your career so far?
JW: The hardest part of this career is always saying goodbye to people. I’m constantly touring and recording, which I love, but I am constantly missing my family in Tennessee. I always enjoy eating at Cracker Barrel on the road because they all look and taste exactly the same. It doesn’t matter if I’m in the middle of New Mexico or Bloomington, Iowa, it always feels and tastes like home.
SK: Tell us about one tweet/message you received from a fan that’s always stuck with you.
JW: People always ask me that, and it’s such a tough question to answer without sounding really corny.
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