Country Star Jelly Roll Opens Up Emotionally About Her Past Struggles With Drug Abuse and Time Behind Bars – The UBJ

Country artist Jelly Roll was visibly moved to tears at the CMA Festival during a candid discussion about his past battles with drug addiction and repeated incarcerations.

The 39-year-old musician has made significant positive changes in his life after a history of substance abuse and frequent stints in prison on various charges.

Emotional Jelly Roll Breaks Down During CMA Festival Speech About Her Past


Jelly Roll visibly upset on stage at CMA Festival, recounting previous drug addiction and prison stints
Credit: Tiktok/jonnyonair
Jelly Roll, 39, opens up about her personal transformation after drug addiction


Jelly Roll, at 39, opened up about her life’s journey after her battle with drug addiction
Credit: Getty
Jelly Roll chokes up while discussing his past


Overwhelmed by emotions, Jelly Roll spoke about his time ‘in and out of prison’ and his experiences in a ‘juvenile facility’
Credit: Tiktok/jonnyonair

Jelly Roll, real name Jason Bradley DeFord, couldn’t hold back his tears as he shared his personal story at Saturday night’s event.

A TikTok video taken by an audience member shows the artist giving a passionate introduction to his song “Son of a Sinner.”

“I was in this juvenile facility. I was in and out of prison. I was in and out of drug addiction and tonight I’m headlining the CMA Fest in Nashville, Tennessee,” he said before breaking down in tears.

Removing his hat and peering into the crowd at Nissan Stadium, Jelly Roll was clearly overcome by his emotions, using his hat to cover his face as he openly cried.

After regaining his composure, he told the crowd, “I’m here to tell you that whatever you want to do in your life, you can do it, I don’t care what anyone tells you.” »

“I dedicate this song to all those who live between good and evil. This song is called Son of a Sinner,” he added.

Jelly Roll’s first encounter with a juvenile facility was at age 13 after she was arrested for possession of marijuana, as revealed in an interview with the Guardian in November 2023.

According to the same interview, he had experimented with most drugs by the age of 15, including pills, cocaine, acid, mushrooms and methamphetamine.

Following an attempted marijuana theft while armed at age 16, he was sentenced to 18 months in prison for aggravated assault.

Over the next decade, Jelly Roll was jailed several times for offenses including robbery and possession of cocaine with intent to sell.

He recalled his incarceration experiences in the interview: “Prison was like a high school reunion for me. You walk in there, it’s like, ‘Oh, you’re still here, what’s up man,'” he shared with the Guardian.

He called the revolving doors of the justice system “rough, man.”

Eventually getting out of prison at age 25, Jelly Roll began cultivating a fan base for his music, with his YouTube channel garnering a billion views before signing a record deal.

Jelly Roll Transformation

Last month, Jelly Roll shared details about its journey to a healthier lifestyle.

In a recent chat with People, he opened up about his significant weight loss as he prepares for his upcoming arena tour in the United States.

“I probably lost about 70 pounds,” he said.

“I really kicked some a**, man. I do two to three miles a day, four to six days a week.

“I spend 20 to 30 minutes in the sauna, including six minutes in a cold bath every day. I’m eating healthy right now,” he continued.

Jelly Roll has a goal of losing another 100 pounds, motivated by the improvements he’s already felt with his current weight loss.

“If I feel this good at this weight, man, I can only imagine how I’m going to feel by the time I go on tour,” he said impatiently.

The artist, married to model and businesswoman Bunnie XO, frequently reflects on his connections with his fans, many of whom are juvenile delinquents or recovering drug addicts like he once was.

He said almost every night of performance finds him in tears, often celebrating the recovery milestones of those in the audience.

He said: “It’s sad to say, but there just aren’t a lot of people who write the kind of songs that I’m willing to write and talk about the topics that I’m willing to talk about, but yet they are so common. .”

Jelly Roll revealed earlier this year that he had lost 70 pounds since revamping his diet and fitness routine.

He described engaging in three-mile-long walks four to six days a week, spending 20 minutes in the sauna and describing his plan to lose another 100 pounds.

Jelly Roll in 2022 showing off her 70 pound weight loss