The Truth About Sam Hunt And Hannah Lee Fowler's Relationship

Sam Hunt and Hannah Lee Fowler are one of country music's celebrated modern-day couples, having been married since 2017 after having dated on-and-off-again for years. The two reportedly met in 2008 (per the New York Daily News), though, over the next few years, they separated as Hunt's musical career took off in Nashville, Tennessee. However, as the story goes, Hunt did everything in his power to win Fowler back (via Entertainment Tonight).

Eventually, the pair got married. While Fowler is notoriously private, she has made a few appearances with her husband, and he has cited her as the inspiration for most of his biggest work (via the New York Daily News). That's what made her surprise divorce filing in February 2022 so shocking for so many fans (per TMZ) — the pair had seemed pretty solid as of late.

Here's a peek into the relationship between two people who have been through a lot together, but for whom the future is not exactly certain. As reported by TMZ, the pair are getting ready to welcome their first child in May 2022, though it's unclear what kind of state their marriage will be in when they do.

Sam Hunt and Hannah Lee Fowler met in 2008 and broke up a few years later

The New York Daily News has reported that Sam Hunt and Hannah Lee Fowler first met back in 2008 when they were both in their early 20s. The pair reportedly met in Fowler's hometown of Montevallo, Alabama, which is largely known for hosting the state's only public liberal arts college. As far as most publications have noted, the two dated for several years before they split up for the first time.

As Hunt later told The New York Times, he initiated the breakup to prioritize his music career. As he put it, "She was under the impression, and I had sure expressed this to her at some point, that she was the [No. 1] priority. I would choose her over everything." But, unfortunately for Fowler, Hunt decided to move to Nashville, Tennessee, where he spent the next two years building his future legacy.

Sam Hunt's first album is named after Hannah Lee Fowler's hometown

After spending years working on songs that would eventually make their way to his debut record, Sam Hunt hit the music scene in 2014 with the release of his first album, "Montevallo." Eventually, he revealed the inspiration for the album's name: Hannah Lee Fowler was from that very small Alabama town. 

While speaking to E! News about the record, Hunt revealed a few secrets about the town itself. At the time, he and Fowler were trying to keep their personal life out of the spotlight. Though he doesn't mention her by name, it's well known whom he is talking about when he says, "I didn't actually live in that town. I had never visited Montevallo, but right before I left to go to Nashville I met a girl from there. A lot of the experiences I had with her and the relationship I had with her, that inspired a lot of the songwriting on the album."

In his 2017 song "Drinkin' Too Much," Hunt apologizes to Fowler for naming the record after the place she grew up. As he says in the song, revealing that Fowler was the muse for his music led to things neither of them were happy about, such as strangers messaging Fowler on social media.

The couple's relationship was always tumultuous

While some of Sam Hunt's songs, such as "Body Like A Back Road," make it hard to believe that he and Hannah Lee Fowler have ever struggled, the reality of the relationship is that it's been pretty up-and-down the entire time they've known one another. In January 2017, Hunt revealed the pair weren't together when "Montevallo" was released and that he even went all the way to Fowler's home in Hawaii to reconnect with her.

While speaking to Entertainment Tonight, Hunt revealed he "went out [to Hawaii] about seven times in about three months." His goal? To win Fowler over for good. As he said, he spent the time "trying to talk to her about coming back. And the seventh trip I convinced her." 

It's likely that the two have struggled in part due to Hunt's career dominating their lives. As Hunt told Entertainment Tonight, Fowler is a person with her own dreams. He said, "She has her own life and her ambitions and her own dreams and things are important to her, and I want to support those as much as she's supported me." 

Sam Hunt and Hannah Lee Fowler got engaged in Israel

Eventually, the stars aligned for Hannah Lee Fowler and Sam Hunt. In January 2017, the pair were on a trip to Israel — though it's not clear whether the trip was for business or pleasure, Us Weekly has noted Hunt's mentioning of Fowler working with Holocaust survivors there — when Hunt decided to propose. However, as he explained to DJ Bobby Bones on his radio show, something happened that almost halted his plans that day. "Something came up ... that irritated her ... and I realized that this may mess up my big plan to ask her to marry me that night," he told Bones.

While he doesn't get into the details of what transpired between them, Hunt does say that the fight itself gave him the perfect opportunity to ask Fowler to marry him. As he put it, "So this little altercation we had actually worked out," he said, adding, "It was a special moment."

They got married in an intimate wedding in 2017

Even though it seemed unlikely at times, Sam Hunt and Hannah Lee Fowler finally got married in April 2017. Details of the big day are still pretty scarce, but, at the time, TMZ published photos that depict the bride and groom seated at a table inside a wedding hall believed to be in Georgia. TMZ went on to state that the photos were from the reception, which was held at a venue called In the Woods. The event was attended by approximately 150 guests, with nary a celebrity face in sight.

Martha Stewart also spilled the beans on the big day, publishing a piece the day before the wedding that indicated all things were a go for the couple and that Hunt, Fowler, and their wedding attendants reportedly all wore designs by Nashville-based Olia Zavozina. 

Hunt was reportedly so excited about the upcoming wedding that he had taken to wearing his wedding band early, explaining to Entertainment Tonight, "I put it on to try it on, and decided it felt too good and I didn't want to take it off. It's only a few weeks left before we do get married." He also said the two would have an "intimate" wedding, as "we don't like celebrating ourselves too much." 

Hannah Lee Fowler does not like the spotlight that comes with the relationship

Hannah Lee Fowler has been notoriously press shy when it comes to the attention her husband's burgeoning career has cast on their lives. In fact, Hunt rarely shares photos of his wife on Instagram, and he's acknowledged how she has felt in the past after he named his first album after her hometown. 

Despite that, it's clear Fowler has been one of the biggest sources of inspiration behind Hunt's music, a fact he has admitted to himself. In 2017, it seemed he couldn't stop himself from celebrating Fowler in a huge way while performing his hit song "Body Like A Back Road" at the Academy of Country Music Awards that year: He moved into the audience and plopped down in his seat next to Fowler, singing the song while she covered her face with her hands and laughed (via People).

Hunt later told People that Fowler "inspired more than anything the lighthearted spirit behind the song." As he continued, "I wasn't in an optimistic place before we got back together. After we got back together, I took a step back and didn't take everything quite as seriously — in a good way — and put this song out."

The two had to contend with Sam Hunt's DUI arrest in 2019

In 2019, Sam Hunt was arrested for driving under the influence after he was caught driving down the wrong side of the road in Nashville, Tennessee. As Us Weekly reported at the time, Hunt's blood alcohol level was .173 (well over the legal limit of .08). As the police report noted, "The defendant showed numerous signs of impairment on all tests conducted.

It took two years for the case to make it to court, and, in August 2021, Hunt and wife Hannah Lee Fowler finally learned of his punishment: 11 months and 29 days in jail. In the end, Hunt was only required to serve 48 hours of his sentence and did so at Nashville's DUI Education Centers. Hunt also apologized for the incident, writing on Twitter, "It was a poor and selfish decision and I apologize to everyone who was unknowingly put at risk and let down by it" (via Us Weekly). That, undoubtedly, included his wife, who apparently stood by him throughout the entire experience.

Hannah Lee Fowler filed for divorce from Sam Hunt in February 2022

In late February 2022, Hannah Lee Fowler filed for divorce from Sam Hunt. The filing was particularly explosive because court documents revealed two things: Fowler had accused Hunt of "inappropriate marital conduct" and "adultery" and that Fowler is currently pregnant with the couple's first child, due in May 2022. The documents also note that Fowler believes there is no chance of reconciliation (per TMZ).

Fowler went on to request child support, alimony, and primary custody of the pair's unborn baby. The filing came a month after Hunt told the "TC & Dina" radio show that the two were trying for a baby, saying, "[We've] really started thinking about it seriously here these past few months, so that's on the agenda right now."

People later noted that Fowler then withdrew the filing only hours later, requesting she be allowed to file again in the future as needed. This ended up being because Fowler's lawyers had filed in the wrong jurisdiction, and TMZ reported that the divorce request had been refiled.