Exclusive: Luke Bryan Talks Link Between Practical Jokes, New Single, & His Wife

Luke Bryan and his wife, Caroline, are the picture of country glamour when they walk the red carpet into awards shows. But beneath the sequins and wide white smiles lurks a love for something much less genteel – no-holds-barred practical jokes.

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The couple even turns Christmas into a holiday for gags: Prankmus. Bryan said the tradition—although it has somewhat diminished—dates back to their college days. He admits he started it, but his wife made sure she finished it.

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Bryan said that when he was in college, he and his buddy rode around one night, targeting 20 or 30 people with practical jokes. They covered Caroline’s Honda in Vaseline, including the windows and door handles.

“We didn’t realize all of the repercussions of that moment,” Bryan told American Songwriter, remembering that he got back to his bedroom in his fraternity house and knew immediately something was wrong.

“I open the door, and all the lights were off. I get in the bed, and when I put my feet in the bottom, there was two whole bottles of hand lotion in the bottom of my bed.”

Later, he realized his underwear were missing. He couldn’t find them for three weeks. Caroline had taken every pair, dipped them in water, wadded them into a ball, and stuck them in the freezer so that they all froze together.

Then, every piece of furniture in his room was upside down. Caroline also put a can of tuna in his air vent. His future wife was so determined to get even that she used a ladder to climb into his second-story window.

“For the next three months … it lasted,” the singer said. “She took it to an all-new level by freezing my underwear into a frozen ball.”

As the couple got older and busier, the frequency of the pranks diminished because they required a lot of work.

“Once you prank once, then you got to get more and more creative,” Bryan said. “The next thing you know, the train is going down the track.”

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Luke Bryan: “Love You, Miss You, Mean It”

Luke Bryan isn’t thinking much about pranks these days. He recently released his new single, “Love You, Miss You, Mean It,” to country radio and said that, like the jokes, the song reminds him of a simpler time in his life.

He wasn’t thinking about the nostalgic qualities of the song the first time he heard it and just enjoyed it for what it was. However, after he recorded it, everyone who heard it picked up on its familiar themes.

“Everybody’s like, ‘Oh my God, this kind of sounds like vintage throwback Luke stuff,” Bryan said. “I’m like, ‘Well, I don’t realize that. But then it kind of does.”

He said the rollercoaster love story of high school sweethearts resonates with people and that “Love You, Miss You, Mean It” spoke to him on all the same levels. While he didn’t write the lyrics, they are even a bit autobiographical.

“Caroline and I actually did the college sweetheart breakup-and-get-back-together,” he said. “The song just felt right. It felt good, and it felt that way from the first listen. I heard it and it just felt like it had all the elements of a big hit song. Then you got to go in and record it, and the rest is history.”

Photo by Taylor Hill/WireImage

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