John Rich Reveals the Insane Behind-the-Scenes Conditions on ‘Celebrity Apprentice’

by Clayton Edwards

Country music fans are familiar with John Rich’s work. After all, he has been in two of the biggest groups in the genre. Rich got his start in Lonestar. Then, after a brief solo career, he became one half of Big & Rich. So, yeah. You’ve heard his work. However, those who don’t keep up with reality TV may not know that Rich was also the big winner in the 2011 season of Celebrity Apprentice.

John Rich was actually approached to do the show three times. He kept turning it down because he watched the show and didn’t want to go through what he saw on TV. However, the third time was the charm. Celebrity Apprentice producers flew out to Nashville to speak with Rich in person. The face-to-face meeting got him on board with the show. In the end, he won $1.4 million for St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

If you’ve watched Celebrity Apprentice you know that things can get pretty hectic, However, just like anything else, the audience only sees a fraction of what is really happening. John Rich gave Marty Smith some behind-the-scenes details about the show in the latest episode of The Road You Leave Behind.

John Rich Gives a Behind-the-Scenes Look at Celebrity Apprentice

Rich got into the nitty-gritty of Celebrity Apprentice when Marty Smith asked him about the pressure of being a project manager on the show.

The bulk of the pressure, John Rich said, comes from understanding that if you don’t win you’ll hear “You’re fired,” and nobody wants that. Also, Rich does a killer impression of Donald Trump. Watch the video and hear it for yourself.

It gets deeper than the fear of getting kicked off the show, though. John Rich said, “Man, they torture you in those shows. By that that I mean, they don’t let you eat for 8,10,12 hours sometimes.” So, most of the things we see them do on the show, they’re doing on an empty stomach.

John Rich realized that’s why people act so crazy on the show. So, he packed his briefcase with power bars and Gatorade and would sneak off to eat a snack and keep his head straight. Adapt, improvise, and overcome. That’s what winners do. 

It wasn’t all bad, though. John Rich said that he made some true friends on the show. He actually became close friends with Atlanta-based rapper/producer Lil Jon.

Rich said that he believes that the two of them working so closely together on the show sent an important message. They are two guys who couldn’t be much more different. They’re from completely different worlds. However, they looked past those differences and formed a tight bond. In fact, he and Lil Jon are still close today. They have worked together on various charity projects in the past decade. Furthermore, Rich said if Lil Jon called him today and said he needed help, he would be there in a heartbeat. That goes both ways, Rich said.

Looking past differences to find common ground? That’s real Outsider spirit, right there.

For more about John Rich and other artists, watch the full video podcasts on Outsider’s Youtube or listen on  Podbean or Apple Podcasts (below).