Groundbreaking Grammy-nominated and Dove Award-winning country artist Ty Herndon is reclaiming his story and revealing new truths with the release of his long-awaited forthcoming album JACOB. Due out July 15, JACOB is the culmination of a life of hard-fought struggles and hard-won triumphs. His most personal album to date, Herndon revealed the true meaning behind the project in a PEOPLE exclusive where he delves into his past addiction to crystal meth, rehab, sexual trauma, hitting rock bottom, and his battle with mental illness.
Sober now for 18 months following a period of relapse that nearly led to suicide, Herndon is ready to chronicle new parts of his life never before shared. The music plots a path to where he finds himself today — a destination marked by recovery, inner strength, and peace. Released in partnership with Pivotal Records, a division of Pivotal Moments Media, JACOB, is an 11-track musical experience where each song is based on experiences from his own life. Part country, part rock, part gospel – but all Ty Herndon – the country luminary has captured the pain, sorrow, and redemption that are universal to the human experience.
“This album is about the power we all have to change our endings. The last two years have been a journey like none other for me, and I’m looking forward to sharing some new truths with listeners and reminding them that we have it within us to turn our greatest challenges into our greatest triumphs,” said Herndon. “Besides that, it’s just some damn good music.”
Herndon hopes this album will help him fuel a comeback to Nashville and CMT’s Cody Alan stands in support. “It’s possible,” Alan states in the PEOPLE article, “Nashville is a more forgiving town these days – especially if you’ve got a good song. I’ve always thought that a great three minutes can save anybody.”
Growing up in church, Herndon felt that this project deserved a spiritual title. He derived the album title from the Biblical Old Testament figure, Jacob, who dealt with severe challenges and mistakes before rising to become a leader of his tribe. Herndon tells PEOPLE, “He took his biggest challenge and made it his biggest blessing.”
To read the full exclusive on Herndon, grab the latest issue of PEOPLE from newsstands this Friday. PEOPLE’s full audio interview will also be released this Friday on the PEOPLE Every Day podcast.
Herndon burst onto the scene and made his chart debut in 1995 with “What Mattered Most,” which became his first No. 1 song and garnered a Song of the Year award (Music Row Magazine). It was also the title track to his first album, which debuted on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart and had the biggest first-week shipment in the history of Epic Records Nashville.
Between 1995 and 2002, Herndon charted 17 singles, including his three No.1s and numerous top 10 hits, such as “I Want My Goodbye Back,” “Loved Too Much,” “A Man Holding On,” and “Hands of a Working Man.” He topped the charts in 1996 with the single “Living in a Moment” and again in 1998 with “It Must Be Love.”
In 2014, Herndon became the first major male country artist to publicly come out as gay in an exclusive with People magazine. He received an outpouring of support that only strengthened his relationship with fans and the country music community, expanding his reach to new and diverse audiences. Shortly after, he made history when he hosted a first-of-its-kind country music event, The Concert for Love and Acceptance, now an annual event that provides a stage for LGBTQ and allied artists. In 2020, he created the Foundation For Love & Acceptance to further his work on behalf of LGBTQ youth.
Herndon found himself back at No. 1 in 2020 — this time on iTunes with his remake of “Orphans of God,” a collaboration with Kristin Chenoweth and Paul Cardall featured on his holiday release, Regifted. Over the last year, he has been working on the new album, JACOB, his first of all-new music since 2016’s House On Fire.
Grammy-nominated and Dove Award-winning, Herndon’s voice is stronger than ever, and he’s using it to make a difference. In addition to his own foundation, Herndon lends his time and talent to MusiCares, which has supported Herndon through his struggles and supports those in the music industry with a safety net of services. In 2022, he joined Pivotal Moments Media as a Brand Ambassador and as the first artist signed to the organization’s new record label, Pivotal Records.
JACOB Track List:
1. “’Till You Get There” (Ty Herndon, Jamie Floyd, Erik Halbig, and Jimmy Thow)
2. “Dents On a Chevy” duet with Terri Clark (Starner Jones, Leslie Satcher, and Will Robinson)
3. “God or the Gun” (Ty Herndon, Jamie Floyd, Erik Halbig, and Hector Montenegro)
4. “Standing in the Whiskey” (Ty Herndon, Jamie Floyd, and Erik Halbig)
5. “Fighting With Me” feat. Emily West (Erik Halbig and Emily West)
6. “Say It For You” feat. Wendy Moten (Ty Herndon, Hector Montenegro, and Khiana Noel Meyer)
7. “Lean In” duet with Jamie Floyd (Ty Herndon, Jamie Floyd, Erik Halbig, and Hector Montenegro)
8. “Sleeping With a Stranger” (Ty Herndon and Hector Montenegro)
9. “Landslide” duet with Shelly Fairchild (Ty Herndon, Erik Halbig, and Morgan Myles)
10. “Hallelujah” (Ty Herndon, Hector Montenegro, Joshua Nichols, Christina Elizabeth Tripp)
11. “Damn Good Feeling” (Ty Herndon, Shelly Fairchild, and Hector Montenegro)