Michael Ray and Carly Pearce will tie the knot later this year, after getting engaged last Christmas. But Ray knew long before he popped the question that he would marry Pearce. In fact, the "Her World or Mine" singer revealed that he knew from their first date, at the Nashville Palace, that he would eventually make her his wife.
"I remember going to her house, because our first date technically was hanging out in the kitchen, and drinking wine, listening to old country songs and it was just the most easiest conversation I've ever had," Ray recalled to PopCulture.com. "Just all these things connecting, and I remember going I'm, 'Wow, I'm in love with this girl.' So then, she says 'What do you like to do?' And I was like 'Well, this is when you can either lie and be cool, or tell her what you actually do.'"
Ray, thankfully, decided to be honest, and tell her where he spent a lot of his free time when he wasn't on the road.
"I was like, 'Well, I like to go to the Nashville Palace, by myself and listen to these old bands,'" Ray recalled. Ray invited her to join him, in honor of their grandfathers, who both loved country music.
"We go the Palace and sit at the bar, and I was like, 'Okay, how do I do this, because she's getting the hint,'" said Ray. "I see this is happening, so I went to put my arm around her, and it was like at the moment when I put my arm around her chair, I was like, 'Oh, I'm going to marry her.' I knew that moment."
Pearce famously made the initial move with Ray, sliding into his DM's on Instagram to get his attention, even though he didn't catch on right away.
"We knew each other. Nashville is a small town, and you know the same groups," Ray acknowledged. "I was like, I don't know, maybe she does just want to talk about music. I didn't want to be that guy because, let's face it, I'd have to see her again. You know, that if I was like 'Hey, Carly Pearce is after me,' and she's like, 'No dude, I just want to talk about music.'"
"I just wanted to talk about food that you boasted about on Instagram," Pearce quipped, referring to the way Pearce would look for things to comment about.
"Yes, one of the ones she did, was I had some food and she would find ways, once it started to kind of sink in to me, she would find ways to talk to me. Like I'd have like chicken, and she'd be like, 'I also eat chicken.'
"I'd look at whatever was in his Instagram, and I'd be like, 'Kitchen, dog, chicken, okay.' 'Hey I had chicken tonight too!'"
After one particular day where they continued going back and forth for nine hours on Instagram, Pearce made her move, and reminded him that he had her phone number.0comments
"I don't know what happened to me with him, but I just bulldozed down every stereotype that tells you to let the guy lead," said Pearce. "I'm from the South, and that's usually [a] no. I just bulldozed it down."
Photo Credit: Getty Images/Jeff Kravitz