Clint Black and Lisa Hartman Share the Secret to Their Enduring 30-Year Marriage: 'Nurture and Protect'
Clint Black family
Russ Harrington Lisa Hartman Black, Clint Black, Lily Black and two of their four dogs
They were two stars in different orbits, so much so that Clint Black didn't even know who Lisa Hartman was when they met backstage on New Years Eve 1990 after one of his concerts.
The couple will celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary on October 20th and remember that moment vividly.
"It was slow motion like you see in the movies," says Lisa, 65, PEOPLE in this week's issue. "There was something."
Clint, 59, says, “I knew I was looking great at someone. I didn't know anything about her. I didn't know your TV show.
At the time she was the director of the hit TV drama Knots Landing, Lisa was in town promoting a TV movie when she snatched a show ticket from a mutual friend. Days later, another mutual friend pressed Lisa's phone number into Clint's hand and he took it from there. Ten months later, they were married in an all-family wedding on his Texas farm.
Before Brad and Kimberly and before Keith and Nicole, Clint and Lisa may be the original Nashville-Hollywood couple that captivates fans. When their dating news broke, it seemed like an unlikely pairing, but they have since grown into a permanent and enviable marriage.
"Love is something that you nourish and protect," says Clint. "We grew together in our relationship and never separated."
Clint calls his wife the "greatest influence" in his life and has also relied on their relationship to inspire some of country music's most timeless love songs. "As soon as we fell in love," he says, "then every love song I wrote had to sound like we are."
Clint Schwarz and Lisa Hartman
Ron Gallela / Getty Clint Black and Lisa Hartman Black in the 90s
But Lisa was far more than her husband's muse. She has accompanied him on several memorable duets over the years, including her 1999 blockbuster When I Said I Do, and she has occasionally made guest appearances on his shows. Last year the couple performed as Snow Owls on The Masked Singer, and next month, just a few weeks after celebrating their milestone anniversary, they will tour together for the first time.
Little did Clint know in 1990 that he met a singer and an actress. Lisa recorded four pop-rock albums in the 1970s and mid-1980s, albeit without a breakout hit. After they got married, she decided to put that part of her life aside and sing them to her private duets at home.
"His career was so huge," she says, "and I did my thing and I just left it."
But over the years, Clint has refused to keep his wife's sizable vocal gifts a secret. He's enjoying the story of how he brought it back to the studio for the first time with "When I Said I Do". The song was written over two days while standing on the island kitchen of her Nashville home while she worked nearby.
RELATED: Clint Black: Singing "Do Something To Me" With Ms. Lisa
“I go 'Sing this with me' because it would harmonize my favorite songs with me in the kitchen,” he recalls. "So after two days we sing this song and it sounds great, and then I said to her, 'You have to record this with me."
Her response, Clint recalls, was quick. "I'm not going to record this song," she said, adding that he had to find "a real singer".
Why did she say no?
“It just felt so big to me,” Lisa says now. "And I was done with that, and ... I don't know ... fear!"
Clint was persistent and just days before he had to give up the entire album the cut was intended for, he came up with a final argument: "I said, 'If you don't sing on it, I'll sing it to myself, no one else to it bring to sing it with me and we will always look back and wish you were there. '"
Lisa eventually agreed to have his case brought forward and went to the studio. "When I Said I Do" became one of Clint's 13 # 1 songs and earned the couple an ACM Award for Singing Event of the Year in 2000.
Most recently, her foray into The Masked Singer gave Lisa another opportunity to show off her voice - and her chemistry.
RELATED: The Masked Singer: Clint Black Calls His and His Wife Lisa Hartman's Snowy Owl Costume a "Sweat Box"
The invitation came by text message while Clint was fatefully standing on the same kitchen island. "I looked up at Lisa and said, 'Well, listen to this,'" he recalls. "We just laughed at the idea, and then we looked at each other and knew we were actually going to think about doing it. And it took about five minutes to really talk about it, and then we were in. It was so fast. "
Masked singing owl revealed
Michael Becker / FOX (2)
Lisa says the experience brought her even closer. "We'd never done anything like this before," she says, "so we really leaned on each other."
It also inspired Clint to write another duet, "Til the End of Time," which was released last December, and it helped pave the way for her 24-day tour that will be in Wichita on November 18th Falls, Texas, starts in New Orleans and ends on Valentine's Day 2022. With the neat title "Mostly Hits & the Mrs." The couple's 20-year-old daughter, Lily Pearl, an aspiring country artist, will also be featured.
"This is something completely new," says Lisa and confesses, "I'll be scared." But she trusts that nervousness will subside once she's through the first show.
The couple promises an entertaining evening full of unforgettable solo, duet and trio moments. Lisa also persuaded her husband to perform "a huge hit" that he hasn't made in concerts in 25 years. "I won't give it up!" she teases.
“And then I persuaded her to do something from Knots Landing,” Clint reveals.
"It'll be fun," says Lisa, "but it's a lot of work, so it's a new challenge."
As it should be, says Clint. With the intent of living their best lives as they enter a new decade of marriage, he says the best way to do so is to "keep creating something in front of us that we must be ready and ready for." do that and enjoy. Doing this tour is a new chapter. It's challenging, exciting and fun. "
For more information on Clint Black and Lisa Hartman Black, visit the newsstand on Friday in this week's issue of PEOPLE.
In this article:
Lisa Hartman Black
American actress and singer
American musician, record producer, and actor
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