Inside Shay Mooney and Hannah Billingsley’s Fairy-Tale Romance
Hannah Billingsley and Dan + Shay’s Shay Mooney met in the most millennial way possible: through social media. They had…
Shay Mooney and Hannah Billingsley; Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images for CMT/Viacom
Hannah Billingsley and Dan + Shay’s Shay Mooney met in the most millennial way possible: through social media. They had a number of mutual friends and communicated every now and then via the internet. When they finally met in person, Mooney instantly knew she was the one.
“From the very first time I saw her, I knew I wanted to marry her,” Mooney told People. “She’s stunning. I finally convinced her to come to a show in Fayetteville, Arkansas.”
Their budding relationship continued to flourish, and after a year and a half of dating, Mooney knew he had to “lock it down.” He planned a movie-worthy proposal at a picturesque church near Billingsley’s hometown.
On August 9, 2016, Mooney got down on one knee and poured his heart out.
“I had so much I wanted to say to this beautiful girl when I was proposing, but I was so shaky and nervous I don’t even remember what I said, or if what I said made a lick of sense,” he later recalled.
Both of their families were waiting inside the church to surprise the soon-to-be bride.
In the midst of planning the details surrounding their big day, the couple shared the news that they were expecting their first child.
“Gonna have a new band member in the Mooney family,” the singer wrote on Instagram. “2017 is gonna be the start of our best adventure yet!”
On January 24, 2017, Asher James joined their family.
“And just like that, our lives are forever changed. 10 perfect fingers and 10 perfect toes and a whole lifetime of joy wrapped right up in our arms,” the new mom shared following Asher’s birth. “I am so overwhelmed with happiness.”
The couple officially sealed the deal with a gorgeous outdoor wedding on Mooney’s family farm on October 20, 2017. 9-month-old Asher took part in the ceremony as did Dan Smyers, Mooney’s musical partner, who acted as a groomsman.
The bride, a former Miss Arkansas, donned a stunning Rita Vinieris gown with a V-neck and a full skirt. After exchanging emotional vows, the newlyweds invited guests to join them under a massive tent for the reception where they shared their first dance to Brad Paisley’s “Then.”
“Shay is everything I never knew I needed,” the new Mrs. Mooney told Arkansas Bride after their big day. “I truly never imagined being with a man in the music industry, so it took me some time to come around. But God had other plans. Shay was and is patient as the day is long and makes me laugh at every turn. He’s my person. I love him more than words can express…”
In 2019, the couple shared that their family was expanding once again. The news came just as Dan + Shay got the news that “All To Myself” hit No.1 on the country charts.
“Celebrating a number 1 with baby number 2,” Mooney wrote on Instagram.
Their second child is expected to arrive in early 2020.
Lauren Jo Black
Lauren Jo Black, a University of Central Florida graduate, has immersed herself in the world of country music for over 15 years. In 2008, she co-founded CountryMusicIsLove, eventually selling it to a major record label in 2015. Following the rebranding of the website to Sounds Like Nashville, Black served as Editor-in-Chief for two and a half years. Currently, she assumes the role of Editor-in-Chief at Country Now and oversees Country Now’s content and digital footprint. Her extensive experience also encompasses her previous role as a Country Music Expert Writer for Answers.com and her work being featured on Forbes.com. She’s been spotlighted among Country Aircheck’s Women of Influence and received the 2012 Rising Star Award from the University of Central Florida. Black also spent time in front of the camera as host of Country Now Live, which brought live music directly to fans in 2021 when the majority of concerts were halted due to the pandemic. During this time, she hosted 24 weeks of live concerts via Country Now Live on Twitch with special guests such as Lady A, Dierks Bentley, Jordan Davis, Brett Young, and Jon Pardi. Over the course of her career, she has had the privilege of conducting interviews with some of the industry’s most prominent stars, including Reba McEntire, Blake Shelton, Luke Combs, Carrie Underwood, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Lainey Wilson, and many others. Lauren Jo Black is a longtime member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.