alan jackson cowboy hat
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Alan Jackson Reveals Why He's Always Wearing a Cowboy Hat

There's been men in country music you'd rarely see without their trademark cowboy hat dating back to Hollywood's singing cowboys in the '30s and '40s and honky tonk heroes from the '50s like Hank Williams.

By the '90s, country singers were either hat acts like Alan Jackson, or, in the cases of Marty Stuart and Travis Tritt, their image was partially built on never wearing hats on stage.

When considering Jackson's look, it's easy to assume that like most of his songs, his Stetson hat reflects an appreciation for country music legends. Yet per a 2018 interview with GQ, it turns out that the future '90s heartthrob started wearing a hat while in public because he was self-conscious about his appearance.

"I tell you, I started off really when I was a teenager. I had a—and I still have it—a big scar on my forehead from when I ran through a glass door when I was little," he said. "And I was always self-conscious, so when I started singing in high school it kinda bothered me. It was bigger and bolder then; I guess it's kinda worn down over the years. I first started wearing a hat when I was about 17, my old brown cowboy hat. That's the hat I wore to Nashville when I came."

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The Country Music Hall of Fame inductee and Grand Ole Opry member offered advice for anyone shopping for a Stetson who'd rather look more like George Strait than someone in a Halloween costume.

"Well, everybody doesn't look good in a hat," Jackson said. "I've always thought I looked better in a hat. It's about picking what fits your face and head right—if you've got a wider, bigger head you need a wider brim. You don't want a small brim if you've got a big head. And same way with that crown. The top of the hat, you've gotta be careful with that. You really have to experiment with it and pick colors that are good. Like, I never have been able to wear a black hat. I always loved it. But every time I put a black hat on it looks goofy on me because I'm so fair lookin'. Dark guys look better in a black hat."

Nowadays, examples of stylistic choices that help define a singers' image usually involve sunglasses (Eric Church) or baseball caps (Luke Combs), not Western wear.

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