You probably won't know the name John Murphy.
But you might go to the Rascal Flatts concert Saturday at the Ford Amphitheatre. You might marvel at the laid-back country style of band members Gary LeVox, Jay DeMarcus and Joe Don Rooney.
Dang, you might think. Those boys have good taste. Then, in a way, you'll know John Murphy.
By 34, he's worked with stars like Jeremy Piven and Sharon Stone. Now, he's the personal wardrobe stylist for the country superstars. On tour, he ensures the colors jibe and the pants fit and the style is cutting edge but chill.
He called from home in Nashville on a brief tour break to talk about budget shopping, the band's style and his own nightmare concert outfit (can anyone say parachute pants?)
What's your day like on tour with Rascal Flatts?
The clothes are pretty much all put together and altered and embellished in Nashville. When I go on the road, it's going to each guy's bus and picking out a shirt and keeping the color palette running through. Joe Don and Jay are more interested in their fashion and clothes than Gary is. Gary is aware of it and knows what he likes and doesn't like, but as far as putting things together, that's not as important to him as it is to the other guys.
How do you mix up the looks?
We embellish Gary's shirts, add some rhinestones. Joe Don's jeans, we like them to fit real tight in the legs, so we take them in a little. Jay's T-shirts, we'll shorten them a little and take in the sleeve. The fun thing about it is we get to show the variety of the American Living line. It's nice to show you can have an American Living suit and maybe put a Gucci shirt underneath it. You don't have to spend a ton of money to look great. You can focus on your key pieces and really maximize your spending.
How can we make our own wardrobes work better in hard times?
Go in your closet, find all those clothes you have that don't fit you and pick out your two or three favorites to take to the dry cleaner and get them altered to fit you. You've added to your wardrobe and didn't have to spend a lot of money.
What's the worst thing you ever wore to a concert?
I had my parachute pants, tight rolled at the bottom, of course, and my penny loafers. I had a big flap front shirt, and the whole flap came across. That was probably the New Kids on the Block concert. It was the height of the worst fashion ever. It's coming back now and it's giving me anxiety when I go to a store and see bubble skirts and big shoulders. It's like every date I ever had in middle school. Why does anyone think that looks good? It didn't look good then.