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Cool Dad Job: Musician

Cool Dad Vibe: Country Boy

Cool Dad Bona Fides: When Jason Isbell goes home, the population of Green Hill, Alabama skyrockets from 977 to 978. The accomplished singer-songwriter was born just east of Muscle Shoals to teenage parents. His life was a country song from the beginning: He grew up poor, finding his voice and then losing it down a bottle. After rising to moderate fame as the lead singer of the Drive-By Truckers, Isbell struggled to make it on his own. When he did, he exploded. Today, Isbell is everyone and his legend growing every time he gives an interview in which he refuses to be bullied into the country music singer box. He’s sensitive. He’s smart. He’s a damn fine lyricist and a loving father to his daughter Mercy Rose. He’s proved himself to everyone — though one gets the sense he’s not quite done proving himself to himself.