Bart Millard is an American singer and songwriter. He specializes in the Christian rock genre and is the frontman of the band – MercyMe. However, before the fame and the awards, Millard was just an ordinary young boy enduring an abusive dad. That abusive relationship will later inspire one of his biggest hit songs – I Can Only Imagine. Want to know more about Millard’s inspiring story? We have got all the details right here.
Bart Millard Bio (Age)
Bart Marshall Millard was born on the 1st of December 1972 in Greenville, Texas. His parents divorced when he was three and he majorly grew up with his dad. Millard attended the local high school in Greenville where he excelled in academics and sports. He was quite good at football and even nursed ambitions of making it to the NFL, but his dreams were cut short by an injury. When his football days came to an end, Bart Millard found himself with plenty of spare time and decided to take choir as an elective The youth pastor invited him to join the youth group worship band and he became their tech guy. Millard eventually started singing with them and rose to the position of their leader. He then invited another group member, named James Phillip Bryson, to join to pursue a career in music.
The pair moved to Oklahoma and founded MercyMe in 1994. They also recruited other members including guitarist – Michael John, bassist – Nathan Cochran and drummer – Robby Shaffer. Between 1995 and 2000, Bart Millard and his bandmates released six indie albums but they only enjoyed average success. The band later got their big break in 2001 with the album, Almost There. The album contained the hit song, I Can Only Imagine, which fetched them two awards at the 2002 GMA Dove Awards. The album also sold over two million copies and was certified platinum. Since that breakthrough, MercyMe has released several other albums including two Christmas albums. Bart Millard has also dropped two solo albums; they are Hymned No 1 (2005) and Hymned Again (2008). These albums were inspired by his desire to make hymns easily available for his kids as well as a promise he made to his grandma.
Family (Mom, Dad and Brother)
Bart Millard hails from a family of four. His father’s name is Arthur Wesley Millard Jr. while his mother’s name is Adele. The singer also has an elder brother named Stephen. Millard’s parents divorced when he was just three and he grew up with his dad. At first, his dad was a loving man but he became increasingly aggressive after an accident that left him in a coma for eight weeks. Upon recovery and coming home, his attitude towards his sons changed. Every little thing upset him and he took out his anger on Millard and his brother, beating them with razor straps and wooden paddle. The senior Millard would usually get contrite after the beatings but did not change his behavior.
This pattern continued for some years until the day that he gave Millard a beating that nearly killed him. He thereafter sent him to live with his mom for his own safety. Father and son spent several years apart but eventually reconciled after the senior Millard was diagnosed with cancer. He told his son that he was proud of him and even set him up financially so that he could pursue his music. Bart Millard was by his dad’s bedside when he passed away on the 11th of November 1991. He later chronicled the whole experience in the 2018 movie, I Can Only Imagine. The movie was a box office hit grossing $83 million on a budget of $7 million.
Bart Millard is married to his longtime sweetheart, Shannon Millard. The two first met in 1988 in a church youth group. They became friends and eventually started dating. The couple tied the knot in the year 1997. Millard and his wife have five kids together. They are sons; Miles, Sam and Charlie, and daughters; Gracie and Sophie. The couple has also signed on to sponsor five kids from less-privileged backgrounds. Millard has revealed that he always pitches in to help with the family responsibilities while his wife takes charge of the home front.
Bart Millard has a net worth of $5 million. His income stems from album sales, concert performances as well as endorsement deals. Millard and his bandmates have been involved in several philanthropic activities. They performed at a concert benefit for tsunami victims in 2005. They also joined hands with Compassion International to raise money for diabetic kids in 2009.