Jelly Roll Fulfills Promise To Open Music Studio At Nashville’s Juvenile Detention Center: ‘This Is Only The Beginning’

Jelly Roll has big plans to continue to help at-risk youth.


Madeleine O’Connell

| Posted on

April 19, 2024


1:39 pm

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Jelly Roll; Photo Provided

Jelly Roll is living proof that music can in fact save a life and because of that, he has dedicated countless hours to finding new ways to use his growing platform to help others get a second chance at life too. One of the Antioch, TN native’s most recent accomplishments is opening a music studio in Davidson County Juvenile Detention Center in Nashville, Tennessee, the same facility that he spent time during his youth.

“Redemption Songs” Event Celebrates The New Program Launch

To celebrate the unveiling of the new studio space, Jelly Roll teamed up with the Beat of Life Organization, a Nashville-based non-profit that aims to create songwriting/music programs for vulnerable populations around the country, to host a “Redemption Songs” event. This exciting new venture comes after Jelly Roll proudly dedicated a portion of proceeds from his Bridgestone Arena headlining show last December to help fund the program. 

Jelly Roll; Photo Provided
Jelly Roll; Photo Provided

The “Save Me” singer was on-site for the memorable event, alongside a community of other artists, volunteers, and 35 hit songwriters. Also in attendance were Nashville Mayor Freddie O’Connell who introduced Jelly Roll, as well as fellow Nashville native/country star, ERNEST, Juvenile Court’s Judge Sheila Calloway, and several music industry VIPs and correctional leaders, both local and nationwide.  

“I never would’ve dreamed when I was sitting right there that I would one day come back and introduce the studio and partner with the Beat of Life and all these songwriters would come out to support the cause and the f**king mayor would introduce me. I would never guess this,” Jelly Roll said earning a laugh. “It wasn’t in my bingo card in life.”

Jelly Roll Visits Nashville's Juvenile Detention Center; Photo Provided
Jelly Roll Visits Nashville’s Juvenile Detention Center; Photo Provided

Jelly Roll Gets Emotional About The Number Of Songwriters Who Came Out

After performing his new collaborative song with ERNEST, “I Went To College / I Went To Jail,” Jelly Roll went on to say how “emotional” it was for him to see just how many writers rallied around him and lent their time to this cause that he is so passionate about. 

“When I was in juvenile, we never got a visitor. We never had a mentor, nobody ever came to see us,” he explained. “To be able to come back on these terms is a dream that I have and this is only the beginning.”

There appears to be much more in the works for Jelly Roll, as he revealed his plans to build transitional homes for kids, build preventative community centers, and “put millions and millions and tens of millions of dollars back into this city directly for youth because they are our future mayors, they are our future residents of the United States.”

Watch A Recap Of The Event

YouTube video

Jelly Roll also made it a point to openly reflect on his success story as a way to give the kids some hope for their futures. After taking the time to perform for them and celebrate the new program launch, the kids sat down with various songwriters on-site and wrote their very own songs which they then got the chance to showcase in front of the entire room. 

In conclusion, the award-winning artist once again assured the kids that they will always have a friend in him. He also promised to stop by any facility in America when he’s on the road and make the time to sing for the incarnated youth.

“Y’all just let us know when and where. We’ll always do it. We always do.”

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Madeleine O’Connell graduated from North Central College with a bachelors degree in Journalism and Broadcast Communications before deciding to pursue her studies further at DePaul University. There, she earned her masters degree in Digital Communication & Media Arts. O’Connell served as a freelance writer for over two years while also interning with the Academy of Country Music, SiriusXM and Circle Media and assisting with Amazon Music’s Country Heat Weekly podcast. In addition to Country Now, she has been published in American Songwriter, Music Mayhem, and Holler.Country. Madeleine O’Connell is a member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.