Garth Brooks Says He Was "Surprised" By What His Ex Wife Said About Him in His New Documentary

Kayla Keegan

From Good Housekeeping

  • Before Garth Brooks tied the knot to his current wife, Trisha Yearwood, he was married to his ex, Sandy Mahl, for 15 years.

  • Together, Sandy and Garth have three daughters — Taylor, 27, August, 25, and Allie, 23.

  • Sandy was interviewed in the 2019 A&E documentary special Garth Brooks: The Road I'm On, airing at 9 p.m. ET on December 2 and 3.

Months before beginning his highly anticipated 2020 tour, Grammy-winning country music star Garth Brooks is getting the A&E documentary treatment.

During the evenings of December 2 and 3, the 57-year-old artist's rise to fame will be examined in the two-night special Garth Brooks: The Road I'm On. Part of the A&E documentary involves in-depth interviews with those closest to the "Friends in Low Places" singer, including his ex-wife Sandy Mahl, who Garth was married to between 1986 and 2001.

Sandy is a talented songwriter herself and is even credited on Garth's songs "I've Got a Good Thing Going" and "That Summer." But beyond being an artist, Sandy is also the mother of Garth's three daughters, Taylor, 27, August, 25, and Allie, 23.

Looking back on his earlier days in the music industry, the Garth told Us Weekly that he was constantly traveling during his and Sandy's marriage. After watching Sandy tell her side of the story in the documentary, Garth said he was "really surprised" to hear what she had to say about their relationship.

Photo credit: Ron Galella, Ltd.

"She was phenomenal,” he explained. "[I was] gone so much on the road [during our marriage], there were things I guess she was [trying to tell] me that I didn’t hear until this biography. It’s rare you get to hear the other side. I just saw her and I think I hugged her harder than I ever have now that I know things that either I didn’t hear or that she didn’t say until now.”

Although we won't find out what Sandy said until the documentary airs, Garth hinted to Fox News that she discusses the highs and lows of their marriage.

"I heard things from her that she told me our whole life, but I didn't hear them until now," he explained to the outlet. "And so my respect and love for her is through the roof for what she went through and how she's handled it, as well."

In 2001, the couple ended up going their separate ways. But way back in 1987, right after he and Sandy had tied the knot, Garth met his current wife, Trisha Yearwood, for the very first time. By the sounds of it, Garth and Trisha felt an immediate connection to one another. At the time though, Trisha was also married.

Photo credit: Terry Wyatt

"It's strange because I felt that feeling like when you just meet your wife, but I'd been married [to Sandy Mahl] for 13 months," Garth explained in a 2013 Ellen Degeneres Show interview. "Being married, it’s gotta be right. This is who you went to college with, and you were married in front of God and your family and everything."

He then pivoted to talk about Trisha: “There comes that time where you’re looking at the rest of your life and going, ‘How do you want to live it?’ [Trisha] is somebody who I always enjoyed being around, and we had a lot more in common than I ever dreamed we did and we started seeing each other after the divorce, after we came off tour." Trisha and Garth got engaged in 2005 and married that same year.

Now, Sandy works in animal rehabilitation and wildlife rescue at Wild Heart Ranch in Rogers County, Oklahoma. Ever since they split, both have been committed to co-parenting their three daughters.

"They saw both their parents in the morning and both their parents in the evening, and for 14 years," Garth told the Tennessean. "That was how we ran it, because we knew it was right for those kids. If you did what was right for the kids, you were going to do what was right for you. It was simple."

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