John Mellencamp’s past is planted firmly in Seymour and Jackson County. Mellencamp was born here on October 7, 1951.
An early survivor of spina bifida, Mellencamp grew up in Seymour and graduated from Seymour High School as part of the Class of 1970.
Mellencamp released his first album, “Chestnut Street Incident” in 1976 and has released a total of 24 albums. He has amassed 22 Top 40 hits and has won a Grammy.
His first hit “I Need a Lover” paved the way for his breakout 1982 album “American Fool.” That album featured his most successful hit single, “Jack and Diane” which spent four weeks at number one.
Jackson County is very proud of John Mellencamp and the public is invited to see our display at the Jackson County Visitor Center. There also is a display at the Southern Indiana Center for the Arts, where John owns the property, but leases it to the organization.
In 2019, a mural on the side of This Old Guitar Music Store was completed by Indianapolis artist Pamela Bliss.
All of Mellencamp’s time spent here throughout his youth and career comes alive with an audio driving tour, created by the Jackson County Visitor Center. “The Roots of An American Rocker,” offers a glimpse of Mellencamp that most people have never seen. The CD features stops at many of John’s old stomping grounds and a detailed map of Seymour.
The CD is available for purchase at the Jackson County Visitor Center, 100 North Broadway Street, Seymour, for $10. Due to licensing agreements, the CD cannot be shipped outside of Indiana. For information, contact the Jackson County Visitor Center at 855-524-1914.