There’s no doubt the resemblance is there. But Brian Harris never really thought about it until he moved to Nashville in 2013.
“I moved to Nashville and it feels like a second home,” Harris says. “Similar to Jackson in some ways, it has the southern hospitality and charm but with a lot more to do on a daily basis. I came here for better opportunities and a better environment for my two young boys and Nashville has delivered in spades”
Harris certainly has a day job–but it’s his side “gig” that has taken on almost a life of its own. He explains his business career first.
“I have been in the financial planning business for 10 plus years, helping families and small businesses,” he says. “I also spend time in the IT world, consulting with custom IT projects, database design, and strategic management systems. Currently, I am really excited about the future of Strategic Management Systems, real time analytics overall databases for any business. I’m also in the process of working with multiple vendors to set up accounts payable systems for municipalities and non profits. It is an easy way to for non profits and municipalities to add revenue to their bottom line without any expenditure.”
But that is another business story for another time. It’s the bachelor’s uncanny resemblance to a certain country music star that has made him a “fake” celebrity in his new residence of Nashville.
“I had heard Blake Shelton on the radio, but I had no clue what he looked like,” Harris candidly admits. “I was sitting on a front porch in East Nashville with some friends one day when one of them mentioned I looked like him. In unison, everyone else said “OMG, he really does.” I didn’t believe it until someone pulled up a picture on their phone. I couldn’t deny it, it looked pretty damn close! It was also about the same time he was getting really popular on ‘The Voice,’ and I started hearing more and more how much I looked just like him that summer.”
Harris sensed an opportunity. Hence “Fake” Shelton was born.
“The moniker ‘Fake Shelton’ is a funny story. A few summers ago, the Block Agency posted on Facebook that they needed someone who was 6’4-6’5 with Blake Shelton-type hair. I didn’t see this post, but I had multiple people tell me I had to contact the agency. Later than night, I sent an email with a picture. I let the Block Agency know that I was not quite that tall, but I get told on a daily basis I look just like him.
“Still not knowing exactly what I was doing, I was told to come to the Bridgestone Arena at 8 a.m. the following Monday. I show up, they send me to hair and makeup, paint a fake tattoo on my arm, dress me, even gave me a wedding ring. My after picture is posted on my ‘Fake’ Shelton Facebook page, incidentally. By now, I know I am acting as a stand-in for Blake but I am still not sure about the details. I was finally sent back to the filming room, walk in and I see Jason Aldean on a couch sitting across from Kristen Bell.
“As I walk in, Jason does a double take. After talking with him later, he told me he thought Blake had walked through the door. The rest of the day, they called me ‘Fake’ Shelton. Producers saying “Fake Shelton do this, Fake Shelton do that, Fake Shelton look this way, etc.” That is the only time I have been paid to act as Blake or even purposely go out acting like I was him. I have still yet to meet him, though,” Harris says.
In all honesty, Harris confesses he wasn’t even a fan of his doppelganger.
“I didn’t really know much about Blake before I moved to Nashville besides a few songs on the radio. I didn’t really listen to country music at the time. I do like some of his songs, but I am more of a rock kind of guy when it comes to taste in music.”
Fan or not, Harris has parlayed his looks to his advantage.
“Nashville has become the number one city for bachelorette parties in the country,” he laughs. “I can’t go out in downtown Nashville without having several of these bachelorette parties wanting to take pictures. I have had countless pictures, Snapchats, selfies and so forth taken while out around town. A couple years ago, I was on a date with a girl at one of my favorite watering holes. She told me, ‘I was here last week and Blake Shelton was here.’ I thought that was funny cause it was me who was there that same night! She had confused us. I have been out with friends before and when someone in our group goes to the bathroom or to the bar they will be asked how they know Blake and why they are with him. It’s all rather surreal!”
Harris says he’s not quite ready to quit his day job just yet to be Blake Shelton’s double. But who knows? We may be seeing more of “Fake” in the future.
In the meantime, go to Facebook and search for “Fake” Shelton to see for yourself.