Jack White Says He Left Detroit Due to the City’s Cynicism
It wasn't the economy, the weather or even the Lions that prompted Jack White to leave his hometown of Detroit in favor of Nashville in 2005 -- it was the city's "cynical environment."
The former White Stripes frontman opened up about the move to Dan Rather for an upcoming episode of 'The Big Interview,' set to debut tomorrow (Sept. 16). Rolling Stone reports that in addition to giving Rather a tour of his Third Man Records headquarters in Nashville and singing an impromptu Hank Williams cover, White reveals that a backlash in Detroit over the Stripes' burgeoning success in the early '00s led to his journey down south.
"It was very hard for me to move," he said. "Detroit, I always imagined I was going to be there my whole life. It always felt like my home -- even as hard as it is to live there, it always felt that way to me."
White said residents of Rust Belt cities stretching from Philadelphia to Detroit tend to harbor cynical attitudes toward success.
"When you're in that kind of cynical environment, it's hard for people to understand how to relate to it," he said. "It was hard for me to understand ... When you win the lottery, what do you do? You give your brothers and sisters a million dollars if you win the lottery, they're going to end up hating you a couple of years later."
White said he then found it difficult to "live and create" in Detroit and decided to move south -- considering Georgia and Louisiana before settling in Nashville.
"They look at music and the business of music so differently than I do that I thought, 'Well, maybe this is the perfect place,'" he said. "I can just kind of be comfortable here, and I won't be in competition with anybody else."
White is currently on-the-road supporting his second solo album, 'Lazaretto,' which dropped in June. Get his tour schedule here.
And as you wait to see the full episode, get a sneak peek at 'The Big Interview' with White below: