Bryan White

White struggled with exhaustion and a mild bout of depression during his time off, but further down the metaphorical rocky road, he also hit some positive personal milestones. His haitus from music allowed him to focus on another lifelong dream: starting a family. “Since I can remember, I’ve always wanted to be a dad,” White said. He and his wife, actress Erika Page (“One Life to Live”) have two sons, Justin, 7, and Jackson, 5. “I feel like I’m learning just as much as they’re learning,” White said. “Every day is a new day.”

Parenthood is White’s new muse. “Now when I write, there’s such a well to draw from,” he said. “It just doesn’t stop with kids. There’s so much to write about-from a humorous perspective and from a more emotional side, too.” His September 2009 comeback album, “Dustbowl Dreams,” has been called his most autobiographical work yet, featuring much of his own writing about his family and his heritage.

But more than inspiring him musically, “Having children has changed everything for us,” White said. “What I love the most overall about Brentwood is the schools,” White said. Justin attends Scales Elementary and Jackson, Brentwood Baptist. “Being in the Williamson County School district is such a huge blessing. When I moved here 13 years ago, I wasn’t really thinking about that,” White said. “I didn’t realize what a huge blessing it was until I had kids.”

“Just this past year I got to do my first songwriter night for Scales,” White said. “It was so cool, because all these moms and dads are just used to seeing me in the hallway, people who know me as ‘Justin’s Dad.’ And they might know I sing, but they’ve never seen it go down. I think it’s cool when people aren’t afraid to ask me to come do something for their school. I love being approached to do those kinds of things.”

White said he has a blast just doing everyday “dad” stuff. “One of my favorite things to do when I’m home is to drive the kids to school in the morning,” White said. I love talking and laughing with them in the car,” especially after he’s been away traveling.

It’s a challenge to balance children and a music career, “But we work hard to do it, and we make it work,” White said.

Whether either son will follow in his father’s musical footsteps is too early to tell. “I’ve got one that’s absolutely in love with Michael Jackson,” White said. “And Justin, the older one, sings really well, but he’s just so shy, and I don’t want to pressure him to do anything.” Both boys are active in sports, and “really into Legos,” White said. “Legos are a huge deal right now.”

“Maybe that will work out for them, and they can take care of their dad later,” White said, chuckling. Meanwhile, he knows he has his own building to do-besides the kind that makes use of plastic colored bricks. “When you step away from music, the industry doesn’t wait on you,” he said. “New artists come up through the ranks, and people are successful, and so when you jump back in, you do kind of feel like a new artist in some ways, because you’re an unknown again to a lot of young fans.”

“But that’s the challenging and exciting part,” White said. “I get to go out and win over some new people.”

To learn more about Bryan White, visit his website at

“A Bryan White Christmas

Singer-songwriter and Brentwood resident Bryan White is wrapping up a new Christmas album, “A Bryan White Christmas,” due out next month, in the (Saint) Nick of time for holiday listening.

“I love Christmas,” White said. “That’s one thing I haven’t done enough of: I wish early on in my career I would have made it a priority to do more Christmas stuff. There’s something about Christmas music-it’s cozy, it reminds you of your childhood, and it’s got a comfortableness about it.”

The new album will feature original tracks as well as classic covers. And, in celebration of the classic Peanuts cartoon’s 60th anniversary, White's created an instrumental interpretation of characters Linus and Lucy.

“Christmas music doesn’t have any boundaries,” White said. “That’s what’s great about it-anyone can sing it, and anyone can enjoy it.”

Next month, White will hit the road for his “A Night to Remember Christmas Tour,” kicking off with a December 3rd show in his hometown of Lawton, Oklahoma, and featuring several stops throughout the state.

“I’m excited about going home,” White said. “There’s nothing like playing at home, because when you’re done, you get to go to your aunt’s house and eat.”

The tour will also include shows in Kentucky, Arizona and Georgia.

Being on the road around the holidays isn’t anything new for White--in fact, “that’s our main family tradition,” he said. “Since our kids have been born, we’ve never had Christmas in our home. We always end up driving back to Oklahoma or Texas-we flip flop,” between Erika Page’s family and Whites.

“We take our time on the trip, that’s kind of our traditional thing. And it’s really fun; the kids love it, and I love driving-always have.”

Before the Whites hit the road for the holidays, “we set the tree up early and open presents at home so we can have that experience together.”