Bare bones – Bobby Bones book


Author(s): Bobby BonesDownload  

Publish: Published May 17th 2016 by Dey Street Books (first published May 10th 2016)



A touching, funny, heart-wrenching, and triumphant memoir from one of the biggest names in radio, the host of The Bobby Bones Show, one of the most listened-to drive time morning radio shows in the nation.

Growing up poor in Mountain Pine, Arkansas, with a young, addicted mom, Bobby Estell fell in love with country music. Abandoned by his father at the age of five, Bobby saw the radio as his way out—a dream that came true in college when he went on air at the Henderson State University campus station broadcasting as Bobby Bones, while simultaneously starting The Bobby Bones Show at 105.9 KLAZ. Bobby’s passions were pop, country music, and comedy, and he blended the three to become a tastemaker in the country music industry, heard by millions daily. Bobby broke the format of standard country radio, mixing country and pop with entertainment news and information, and has interviewed some of the biggest names in the business, including Luke Bryan, Taylor Swift, Blake Shelton, Tim McGraw, Lady Antebellum, and Jason Aldean.

Yet despite the glamour, fame, and money, Bobby has never forgotten his roots, the mom and grandmother who raised him, the work ethic he embraced which saved him and encouraged him to explore the world, and the good values that shaped him. In this funny, poignant memoir told in Bobby’s distinctive patter, he takes fans on a tour of his road to radio. Bobby doesn’t shy away from the curves he continues to navigate—including his obsessive-compulsive disorder—on his journey to find the happiness of a healthy family.

Funny and tender, raw and honest, Bare Bones is pure Bobby Bones—surprising, entertaining, inspiring, and authentic.

Some Reviews: 3,573 ratings 341 reviews in


Nicole rated it     
**I received this book as part of a Goodreads giveaway ** 

I’m having a hard time separating my thoughts on this book from my thoughts on Bobby Bones himself/radio personality. I enjoyed the book, as I love a good memoir, but I have been listening to the radio show for several months now and have mixed feelings. When I first started listening to the show, I was a bit turned off. It seemed to me that Bobby liked to name drop and flaunt his relationships with celebrities all while trying to point out how “humble” and down-to-earth he was. Reading this memoir, I do understand a bit more about where he came from and that this might come more from well-deserved pride than from bragging.


Towards the end of the book, he explains a little bit about the billboard campaign he paid for when he first arrived in Nashville. Reading this, I was turned off all over again. On top of that, while Googling the incident for more information, I found a lot of articles about his petty feuds with Chris Young, Kacey Musgraves, etc. and I’ve had a hard time listening to the show ever since.

I went from not really loving the show, to being curious about reading his life story in hopes that it would change my mind (as I love the others on the show!), to feeling bad for him and appreciating how his childhood shaped him, to finally coming back to turned off again…

I gave it 4 stars because I do think it’s well-written and I enjoy a good story, even if I don’t necessarily want to hang out with the guy. I feel like he’s a bit narcissistic. I appreciate that he does a lot for the community and likes to give back, but I also feel like he’s always looking for recognition for these things and…I don’t know… I think I’ll just keep listening to my country music in the afternoon 🙂

Danielle (

Danielle ( rated it      
Bare Bones tells the story of how little Bobby Estell from poor, rural Arkansas grew up to be a hugely successful name in country music radio. The book is filled with thoughtful and often heart-wrenching essays detailing his life — from being bullied in school, to dealing with an addicted mother and non-existent father, to his first jobs in the radio business (where he worked for free!), to starting the Bobby Bones Show as we know it today. 

I’ve been listening to the Bobby Bones show every morning for exactly a year now. I found it on the radio my first morning living in Texas and ever since, have not listened to another station once (even during the commercials!). So, obviously, I’m a pretty big fan of Mr. Bobby Bones.

I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know Bobby better through the essays in his book. Even though I had heard a few of the stories before on the radio, the book definitely gave more background details and emotion, which made it worth it to hear the stories again. I couldn’t respect Bobby more if I tried. He is the most hardworking, inspiring, and humble guy that I “know”.

I really enjoyed the parts of the book where I got to learn about the early origins of the show, and how Bobby went from intern-working-for-free at a tiny Arkansas radio station to running the morning show in Austin. There was so much I didn’t know, and I appreciate the show so much more now that I do.

If you listen to the show, this book is a must-read. There’s a reason the Bobby Bones Show is the number one country music morning show in the country, and if you’re not on board yet, you need to be!


Jessica rated it     
When Bobby Bones first took over our local morning show, my family and I were very skeptical. We’d loved the previous DJ, and I wasn’t a fan of non-local shows. But we gave Bobby (and Amy and Lunchbox) a chance, and they converted us. Bobby alludes to his dirt-poor upbringing in Arkansas in his show, so I knew a brief outline of his story. However, reading “Bare Bones,” Bobby’s memoir brought home how tough a childhood Bobby had and how’s it’s informed both his amazing success and what still challenges him. On a side note, I’m always fascinated by “success stories,” people from disadvantaged backgrounds who have succeeded — what makes them tick? Take Bobby — born to a 15 year old teen mom who shortly after became an addict and a dad who fled for good when Bobby was very young. What gave him the grit to persevere? Why was he able to turn bitterness about being bullied into a force for good? For Bobby, it was an early vision of what he wanted to do in life (radio) coupled with an outsize motor (just reading his schedule makes me tired) and using the chip on his shoulder in a positive way. But despite all of Bobby’s success, the only creature he has said “I love you” to is his dog Rusty. At the end of the day, I love listening to Bobby and am happy for his success, but even more I want him to realize that as much as he loves us — and it shows — he’s just as lovable.

Jessica rated it      
I started listening to The Bobby Bones Show in 2014. I loved the setup and everyone’s dynamic. Yes, Lunchbox caught me off guard but I quickly learned to enjoy his offbeat charm. (I think it was his abrupt tone of voice, which apparently is his natural voice…). 

I stopped listening once Bobby started dating his dream girl because even then he would constantly talk about never getting the girl and how his present relationship was such an anomaly. He talked about himself and his shortcomings so much–being unattractive, socially awkward, etc. — that it became obnoxious, especially because callers were constantly telling him the opposite. There is only so much of that that I could take. None-the-less, when I realized that he was publishing his book, I quickly preordered it because he has a wonderful story to tell when he’s not belittling himself. He is so humorous and smart and just delightful to listen to, that is how I would describe his book in short.

I thought I knew Bobby before this book given his willingness to share so much of himself on the show, but little did I know that I’d be in for a surprise to find out that he’s not a total square. No, he doesn’t drink or sleep around or go to bed any later than 8pm, but he is always willing to step up his game for the sake of better ratings. These stories were my favorites.

I highly recommend this book for those interested in inspirational 5/5 STARS!


Brown rated it     
Bobby Estell, now known to music lovers all over the country as Bobby Bones, spends his days on the microphone entertaining millions with The Bobby Bones Show. His nationally syndicated morning radio program is the most popular country music show in America, beloved for the witty talk among Bobby and his cohorts; the easy, everyman rapport he has with stars like Carrie Underwood, Garth Brooks, and Jason Aldean; and his ability to stay true to his roots and where he came from. 

Where Bobby came from is the fuel that drives him-that “Fight. Grind. Repeat.” mantra that makes him one of the busiest guys in the business. Raised by an alcoholic single mother who often resorted to shoplifting to put food on the table and by a grandmother who taught him to shop garage sales, play poker, and love music, Bobby spent his childhood in the hills and trailer parks of Mountain Pine, Arkansas; his is a simple a story as it gets. But Bobby wasn’t going to settle, and when he got his first radio as a birthday present, he focused his mind on getting on the air and beyond. From Arkansas to Austin and eventually to Nashville, Bobby Bones has created the show he always dreamed about, one where he gets to do the thing he loves while hanging out with his friends.(from book jacket)


Google DriveBobby Bones Bare Bones: I'm Not Lonely If You're Reading This Book pdf download


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