Jelly Roll, the stage name of Jason DeFord, is an American rapper, singer, and songwriter. His net worth is estimated to be around $7 million. He built his wealth through music sales, streaming royalties, touring, and merchandise. Jelly Roll blends hip-hop and country music, gaining popularity for its raw lyrics and storytelling. His hit “Son of a Sinner” reached the top spot on country radio in 2023.
|Jason Bradley DeFord (Jelly Roll)
|December 4, 1984
|Antioch, Nashville, Tennessee, USA
|Rapper, singer, songwriter
|2003 – present
|Alyssa DeFord (m. 2016)
|CMT Music Award for Breakthrough Video of the Year (2022)
CMT Music Award for CMT Digital Award (2022)
CMT Music Award for Video of the Year (2022)
Grammy Award nomination for Best New Artist (2023)
|Owns a home in Nashville, TN (details not publicly available)
Table of Contents
What Is Jelly Roll Net Worth?
Unafraid to go his own way, Jelly built his success independently. He released a steady stream of mixtapes and albums, gaining local notoriety for his gritty lyrics and soulful vocals. Collaborations with fellow independent artists like Struggle Jennings and Haystak further solidified his reputation in the underground scene. His 2012 mixtape “Dichotomy” marked a turning point, garnering national attention and establishing him as a force to be reckoned with.
In 2020, Jelly Roll took a bold step, releasing his first country album, “A Beautiful Disaster.” The album, blending his signature rap style with country influences, surprised audiences and critics alike, reaching No. 1 on the Billboard Heatseekers Albums chart. This unexpected success opened doors to a wider audience, leading to collaborations with established country artists like Brantley Gilbert and Chase Rice. His 2023 single “Son of a Sinner” topped the Billboard Country Airplay chart, cementing his status as a crossover success story.
This figure stems from several income streams:
- Record sales: Album sales, both physical and digital, contribute significantly to his income. “A Beautiful Disaster” went Gold, exceeding 500,000 units sold.
- Streaming: Streaming platforms like Spotify and Apple Music provide ongoing revenue based on his music’s popularity.
- Touring: Live performances are a major source of income, with Jelly Roll headlining sold-out shows across the United States.
- Merchandise: Fans can purchase branded apparel and other merchandise, directly contributing to his earnings.
Early Life and Education
Born on December 4, 1984, in Nashville’s Antioch neighborhood, Jason’s childhood was anything but idyllic. His father, Horace “Buddy” DeFord, balanced a meat salesman job with an illegal side hustle, while his mother battled mental health issues and addiction. Music, however, provided solace. His mother, the source of his nickname “Jelly Roll” due to his youthful chubbiness, instilled in him a love for storytelling and the raw emotional power of music. By 9 or 10, he was already crafting his own rap songs, finding solace in expression.
Life took a darker turn at 14. Arrested for marijuana possession and attempted robbery, Jason found himself incarcerated. This period, though challenging, became a turning point. The birth of his first daughter while he was still behind bars served as a wake-up call, pushing him to earn his GED at 23. Despite these early hurdles, the seeds of ambition were sown.
Following his release, Jason, now officially Jelly Roll, embraced a relentless work ethic. He hustled, selling mixtapes out of his car and collaborating with underground rappers like Lil Wyte and Haystak. His music resonated with its honesty and vulnerability, drawing inspiration from Southern hip-hop legends like Three 6 Mafia, UGK, and 8Ball & MJG. It was a time of experimentation, finding his voice while navigating the complexities of life on the fringes.
Success, however, was a double-edged sword. Legal troubles and personal struggles threatened to derail his progress. Yet, Jelly Roll persevered, driven by a raw passion for music and a yearning to overcome his past.
The year 2010 proved pivotal. The loss of his father, his closest confidante, was a devastating blow, forcing him to confront his demons. He faced his addiction head-on, entering rehab and committing to a clean life. This period of introspection saw a shift in his sound. He began incorporating elements of country music, blending it with his rap roots. This unique fusion resonated with audiences, leading to the release of his acclaimed mixtape “Poor Man’s Whiskey” in 2012.
The success of “Poor Man’s Whiskey” marked a turning point. Collaborations with country stars like Brantley Gilbert and ERNEST further solidified his unconventional yet powerful musical presence. His story, one of redemption and resilience, resonated with audiences across genres. Albums like “A Billionaire’s Spirit” and ” Ballads of the Broken” saw him topping charts and earning critical acclaim.
Roll’s childhood unfolded in Nashville’s Antioch neighborhood. His early years were marked by challenges. Witnessing his mother’s battle with mental illness and addiction, he found solace in music, expressing his emotions through songwriting. However, by his teenage years, he was navigating a different path, entangled with street hustles and petty crimes.
In 2008, at the age of 23, a life-altering moment arrived. Incarcerated on drug charges, Jelly Roll received news of his daughter’s birth, Bailee Ann. This became a pivotal point. “It’s like a Damascus Road experience,” he described to podcaster Joe Rogan. “I immediately was like, ‘I’ve got to do something. I’ve got to quit this s—. I’ve got to figure it out.'” Embracing the chance to change, he earned his GED in prison, laying the foundation for a better future.
Following his release in 2009, Jelly Roll channeled his experiences into music, releasing raw and honest songs on YouTube. This vulnerability resonated with listeners, building a dedicated fanbase. His music transcended genres, drawing influences from hip-hop, country, and blues, creating a unique blend that shattered boundaries.
His talent caught the attention of established artists like Struggle Jennings and Yelawolf, leading to collaborations that propelled him further. In 2016, he met Alyssa “Bunnie XO” DeFord, an aspiring podcaster. Their connection was instant, culminating in a whirlwind proposal and marriage the same night. Bunnie became a pillar of support, helping him navigate the music industry while fostering a warm family environment for Bailee Ann and his son, Noah, from a previous relationship.
2023 marked a watershed year for Jelly. His self-titled debut album, a potent mix of vulnerability and swagger, debuted at number one on the Billboard Country Albums chart. Collaborations with top artists like Kid Rock and ERNEST further solidified his place in the industry. The Grammy-nominated “Son of the South,” featuring Noah on vocals, resonated deeply with audiences, becoming an anthem for overcoming adversity.
Despite the whirlwind success, Jelly Roll remains grounded. He prioritizes family time, cherishing moments with Bunnie, Bailee Ann, and Noah. He actively encourages mental health awareness, drawing from his own experiences to inspire others. His music continues to evolve, exploring themes of love, loss, and the complexities of life with unfiltered honesty.
Philanthropy and Activism
While Roll’s music often paints a vivid picture of hardship, it’s also laced with empathy and a desire to help others. This inherent compassion, perhaps rooted in his own experiences, began manifesting early in his career. Notably, in 2012, he established the “J&J Foundation” alongside his wife, Bunnie Brown. This non-profit organization aims to support individuals and families struggling with addiction, a cause close to their hearts due to personal battles.
As Jelly Roll’s music career ascended, his philanthropic efforts evolved. He partnered with various local charities, organizing food drives, toy collections, and back-to-school initiatives. In 2018, he joined forces with “Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee” for a Thanksgiving food drive, personally participating in the distribution of meals to families in need. This wasn’t a one-off event; Jelly Roll consistently returned to support the organization, even hosting a benefit concert in 2020 that raised significant funds.
Jelly Roll’s dedication to service transcended geographical boundaries. In 2020, he partnered with “St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital,” a national organization dedicated to childhood cancer research and treatment. He not only donated a portion of his concert ticket sales but also visited the hospital, interacting with patients and bringing joy to their challenging journeys. This act of kindness resonated deeply with fans, further solidifying his image as a philanthropist with a national platform.
Roll’s influence extends beyond financial contributions and volunteering. He leverages his platform to raise awareness about critical social issues. In 2021, he participated in a “Black Lives Matter” rally in Nashville, using his music and voice to advocate for racial justice and equality. He also actively supports veterans’ causes, performing at benefit concerts and advocating for increased resources and support for those who served the nation.
Jelly’s philanthropic journey is far from over. He continues to actively support various causes, from funding addiction treatment programs to organizing community clean-up initiatives. In 2023, he launched “The Change We Need Project,” a multi-faceted initiative focusing on empowering the youth, supporting underprivileged communities, and promoting mental health awareness. This ongoing project further cements his dedication to positive change and serves as a testament to his enduring commitment to giving back.
Assets and Investments
Jelly Roll’s path wasn’t paved with gold. He battled addiction and legal troubles before finding solace in music, releasing independent albums, and building a loyal fanbase through relatable, unfiltered storytelling. His 2012 breakout hit, “Suicide,” put him on the map, showcasing his vulnerability and lyrical prowess.
Fast forward to 2024, and Roll’s music career is a well-oiled machine. His albums consistently top charts, with “Backroad Baptism” reaching No. 1 on the Billboard Country Albums chart in 2023. Live shows sell out across the country, his YouTube channel boasts over 1 million subscribers, and streaming platforms like Spotify and Apple Music generate hefty royalties. Merch sales further bolster his income, while brand partnerships like his recent collaboration with Black Rifle Coffee add another layer to his financial tapestry.
While music serves as his primary income source, Jelly Roll understands the importance of diversifying his wealth. Rumors swirl about his real estate holdings, with whispers of a luxurious Nashville mansion and vacation getaways. Whether pure speculation or grounded in truth, one thing is certain: he recognizes the value of brick-and-mortar investments.
The world of stocks and securities might also hold a place in Roll’s portfolio. While concrete details remain unconfirmed, it’s not uncommon for successful celebrities to venture into the stock market to further solidify their financial future.
But Roll’s investment ambitions might extend beyond traditional options. His entrepreneurial spirit shines through collaborations like his co-ownership of the bar “The Rambler” in Nashville, suggesting a potential interest in building businesses beyond music.
Jelly Roll’s collaborative spirit was evident early on. In 2010, his track “Pop Another Pill” with Memphis rapper Lil Wyte garnered over 6.3 million YouTube views, marking a crucial step. This laid the groundwork for further collaborations with southern rap icons like Struggle Jennings, Haystak, and Tech N9ne, each infusing their distinct styles into Jelly Roll’s sonic tapestry.
A defining moment arrived in 2018 with “Son of the Dirty South,” a collaboration with country star Brantley Gilbert on Gilbert’s album “So Help Me God.” This unexpected pairing resonated with audiences hungry for something different, showcasing Roll’s ability to seamlessly blend his rap roots with country storytelling. He further cemented his crossover appeal with 2020’s “Country Boy” featuring hip-hop legend Yelawolf, blurring the lines between genres and captivating a wider audience.
2022 marked a pivotal year for Jelly Roll’s collaborations. His critically acclaimed album “Ballads of the Broken” featured a diverse array of artists, including country stars Chris Young and Noah Cyrus, pop-rock icon Shinedown, and legendary rapper Tech N9ne. This eclectic mix further solidified Roll’s position as a bridge between genres, appealing to fans across the musical spectrum.
The momentum didn’t stop there. 2023 saw the release of “Whitsitt Chapel,” an album brimming with collaborative gems. Standouts include “Behind Bars” with Struggle Jennings and Brantley Gilbert, a poignant reflection on past struggles and the bonds of friendship. The album’s title track, featuring Lainey Wilson, became a chart-topping hit, garnering Roll his first-ever CMT Music Award nominations and wins. Their live performance of the song at the awards ceremony was a captivating showcase of their musical chemistry and emotional depth.
Jelly Roll’s collaborations transcend the realm of music, fostering genuine connections. His frequent collaborations with Struggle Jennings, his longtime friend and fellow artist, offer a window into their shared experiences and unwavering support for each other. This authenticity resonates with fans, who see not just musical partnerships but brotherhood in action.
Awards and Nomination
Roll’s journey wasn’t paved with silver linings. The streets of Antioch, Nashville, served as his backdrop, shaping his music with honest tales of struggle and redemption. Early success in the underground rap scene laid the foundation, but it was 2022’s “Son of a Sinner” that propelled him into the mainstream. The raw vulnerability and potent storytelling resonated, topping country charts and garnering over 100 million streams.
Awards soon followed, each a testament to Jelly Roll’s impact. 2023 brought a trifecta at the CMT Music Awards, where “Son of a Sinner” swept Male Video of the Year, Male Breakthrough Video of the Year, and CMT Digital-First Performance of the Year. The coveted New Artist of the Year title at the Country Music Association Awards solidified his place as a rising star.
But Jelly Roll’s impact didn’t stop there. The 2024 Grammy nominations saw him vying for the prestigious Best New Artist award, alongside established names like Latto and Omar Apollo. This nomination transcended genre boundaries, recognizing Roll’s influence beyond the realm of country music.
Each award tells a story. The CMT Awards recognized the artistic merit of “Son of a Sinner,” highlighting its powerful visuals and innovative video format. The CMA win signified industry acceptance, marking him as a talent to watch. The Grammy nomination, an industry pinnacle, elevated Roll to the national stage, showcasing his unique blend of genres and undeniable appeal.
But amidst the glitz and glamor, it’s crucial to remember the core of Roll’s success: his music. His songs resonate because they offer relatable stories, raw emotions, and a glimpse into the complexities of life. Awards validate his talent, but it’s the connection with his fans that truly fuels his journey.
Significant Life events
Jelly Roll’s childhood was far from idyllic. Growing up in the 1990s amidst financial instability and his mother’s addiction, he encountered challenges early on. Music became his refuge, offering a space to express emotions and channel his experiences. However, by his teenage years, his struggles spilled over, culminating in a run-in with the law in 2003. This turning point served as a stark reminder of the path he was on and planted the seeds of change.
While serving time in jail, Jelly received news that rocked his world: the birth of his daughter in May 2008. This life-altering event served as a powerful catalyst for transformation. Determined to become a better father and break free from the cycle of negativity, he committed himself to turning his life around. Music became his compass, guiding him towards a brighter future.
Following his release, Jelly Roll channeled his newfound purpose into his music. He began performing locally, drawing audiences in with his powerful vocals, relatable lyrics, and energetic stage presence. His independent releases, like “Whiskey and Water” (2012) and “A Billionaire Tears” (2017), resonated with listeners who saw themselves reflected in his raw and honest storytelling. This grassroots approach built a loyal fanbase, paving the way for bigger things to come.
2023 marked a pivotal year for Jelly. His album “Backroad Baptism,” released in February, showcased his signature blend of country, hip-hop, and storytelling, garnering critical acclaim and commercial success. The lead single, “Son of a Sinner,” became a crossover hit, topping multiple charts and resonating with audiences yearning for authenticity. Awards followed, including Male Video of the Year at the CMT Music Awards and the coveted New Artist of the Year at the CMAs. This meteoric rise solidified Roll’s place in the country music landscape.
Jelly Roll’s commitment extends beyond music. He has leveraged his platform to advocate for positive change, particularly against the dangers of fentanyl abuse. In January 2024, he testified before the U.S. Congress, sharing his personal story and urging lawmakers to take action. This powerful testimony highlighted the impact his music can have beyond entertainment, inspiring hope, and advocating for social justice.
What Is Jelly Roll Net Worth?
Jello Roll Net Worth is estimated to be $7 million.
Where and when was Jelly Roll born?
Jelly Roll, whose real name is Jonathan Michael DeRosa, was born in Nashville, Tennessee on December 4, 1989.
Is Jelly Roll married?
Yes, Jelly has been married to Bunnie DeRosa since 2016. They have two children together.
What are some of his hobbies and interests outside of music?
Jelly Roll enjoys spending time with family, riding motorcycles, playing basketball, and fishing.
What are some of his nicknames?
He is also known as J-Rolls, the Gutter Prince, and Nashville’s Realest.
Is Jelly Roll involved in any philanthropic efforts?
While there isn’t publicly available information about specific philanthropic efforts, Roll does actively support causes close to his heart, such as helping families in need and supporting local communities.
Has he spoken out about any specific social issues?
He often uses his music and social media platforms to raise awareness about social issues such as addiction, poverty, and struggles faced by working-class communities.
Has Jelly Roll faced any controversies?
Yes, his lyrics and music videos sometimes explore themes of addiction, violence, and hardship, which have sparked discussions and debates. He has also faced criticism for past legal issues and personal controversies.
Has Jelly Roll acted in any movies or TV shows?
No, Jelly primarily focuses on music and does not have any major acting roles to date. He has, however, made cameo appearances in music videos and documentaries related to his life and career.
Who has Jelly Roll collaborated with?
He has collaborated with numerous artists in the country and hip-hop genres, including Lil Baby, Struggle Jennings, Lil Wyte, Yelawolf, and more. He is known for fostering cross-genre collaborations and frequently connects with rising stars.
Has Jelly Roll won any major awards?
While not yet receiving major industry awards, Jelly has achieved significant recognition within the independent music scene, gaining millions of streams and amassing a devoted fanbase. He has also won awards like “Independent Country Artist of the Year” at the Josie Music Awards.
Is Jelly Roll considered one of the top independent country artists?
He is widely recognized as a leading figure in the independent country scene, known for his authentic lyrics, raw storytelling, and ability to blend country with other genres like hip-hop and rock.
What are some of the most significant events in Roll’s career?
Releasing his first mixtape “Blood, Sweat & Tears” in 2012, gaining recognition with tracks like “P.O.W.E.R.,” signing with his own label Average Joes Entertainment, collaborating with prominent artists, headlining successful tours, and achieving millions of streams are just a few noteworthy events.
What are some of Roll’s future goals?
He has expressed a desire to continue making music that resonates with his fans, explore new creative avenues, and use his platform to inspire others. He also aims to expand his label and collaborate with even more artists.
What is Roll’s signature sound?
His music blends elements of country, hip-hop, and rock, often characterized by raw vocals, honest lyrics, and a blend of storytelling and hard-hitting tracks.
Does Jelly Roll have any hidden talents?
Beyond music, Jelly is passionate about cooking and often shares his culinary skills on social media.