Why Billy Ray Cyrus's New Relationship Has Raised Eyebrows

the tea

| LAST UPDATE 01/29/2023

By Lesley Gary

Billy Ray Cyrus has been in the spotlight since his country music star days. However, his most recent relationship has been blowing up headlines as his new flame has sparked attention across the nation...

Billy's New Bae

For any TikTok or Instagram user, the news about Billy Ray Cyrus's new romance has not exactly gone unnoticed. Currently, the 61-year-old actor/musician is linked to 34-year-old Australian bombshell, Firerose.

Billy Ray Firerose Relationship TimelineBilly Ray Firerose Relationship Timeline
@firerose via Instagram

While the news came as a surprise, their story had more twists and turns than ever anticipated. But their 27-year age gap was not the only factor that left spectators stunned. In fact, no one would have ever guessed how the two actually met - and it turns out this is not their first time crossing paths...

The Early Days

Billy Ray was born and raised down south in Flatwoods, Kentucky. His father was a politician, while his mother got involved with music at the age of four. Though his childhood is not completely known, somewhere in the mix, he grew a love for music, which makes sense considering his mother's background.

Billy Ray Country Music Career Billy Ray Country Music Career
Laura Levine/Corbis via Getty Images

As years went on, Billy's career flashed before our eyes. In the 80s, he became a member of a band called Sly Dog. He started strumming guitars and rocking out on stage like there was no tomorrow. But, his talent was far too striking to go unacknowledged - and it wasn't long before his high-score talent was discovered.

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Making Moves

In 1990, Cyrus was discovered by Mercury Nashville Record talent scouts at a Reba McEntire concert in Louisville. Whether Billy was an opening act or strumming through the crowds, either way, he exerted star power. The talent agency knew they could do something with that head of hair.

Billy Ray Cyrus Young CareerBilly Ray Cyrus Young Career
Paul Natkin/WireImage via Getty Images

Before he knew it, Billy was in the studio and swooned every woman with his tanned and toned aesthetic, his iconic mullet, and his breakthrough track Achy Breaky Heart. Fans couldn't control themselves. The song topped the U.S. hot country songs chart and was the first single to achieve triple platinum status in Australia.

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Meeting Tish

In the blink of an eye, Billy was the ultimate 90s heartthrob. While he was probably used to being swarmed with fans, there was one blonde beauty who stood out by a mile in the sea of crowds - as if she was the only one in the room. Although, this was long before his breakout success.

Billy Ray Tish Cyrus Relationship TimelineBilly Ray Tish Cyrus Relationship Timeline
@tishcyrus via Instagram

In 1991, one year before his Achy Breaky Heart debut, Billy and Tish locked eyes in a club. At the time, according to People, Billy was homeless and living out of his car. "It wasn't pretty," he later recalled. But that didn't phase Tish: She found her cowboy, and the rest was officially history. Little did they know the future they would face.

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Building a Family

One year later, a blended family quickly came into the mix. The year was 1992, and the couple welcomed their first child together, Miley Ray, originally born as Destiny Hope Cyrus. She was full of light, which ultimately landed her the nickname 'smiley Miley.' At the same time, Billy welcomed a son with another woman, Christopher Cody.

Billy Ray Miley Cyrus YoungBilly Ray Miley Cyrus Young
Rick Diamond via Getty Images

Despite Billy having a child with another woman, his main focus was Tish, and he meant it. Their life, with Miley - and older half-sister Brandi - brought the two so much happiness. So, in 1993, the duo sealed the deal and got hitched while Tish was already pregnant with their second child. The Cyrus clan was only getting started.

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More Than Meets the Eye

Sure enough, in 1994, Braison Cyrus was welcomed into the world, followed by Noah Cyrus in 2000, the youngest of the country clan. To the naked eye, the family was as happy as clams, living on their rural farm just outside of Nashville. But behind closed doors? Things looked different.

Billy Ray Miley Cyrus SiblingsBilly Ray Miley Cyrus Siblings
Steve Granitz/WireImage via Getty Images

Unfortunately, this was the calm before the storm. While things were kept under the radar, Billy filed for divorce in 2010. The couple expressed to People, "As you can imagine, this is a very difficult time for our family. We are trying to work through some personal matters. We appreciate your thoughts and prayers."

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Facing the Rumors

It was a chaotic time for the Cyrus household. They were one of Hollywood's favorite families living a white picket fence lifestyle - or so we thought. When the divorce went public, further gossip circulated over Tish having a rumored affair with the Poison singer Bret Michaels. Eventually, this was denied after an interview on Fox & Friends.

Billy Ray Tish Divorce Cheating DramaBilly Ray Tish Divorce Cheating Drama
Frazer Harrison via Getty Images

Billy and Miley were in the middle of filming the Disney hit series Hannah Montana, where they played an on-screen father and daughter. The show had been running for four years, so all sorts of changes were happening. Then, sweet niblets! Tish & Billy reunited in 2011 and mended their relationship. But this wasn't the end...

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History on Repeat

But three years after they settled the divorce, Tish hadn't exactly been impressed with the progression and filed for divorce in June 2013. She told People, "This is a personal matter, and we are working to find a resolution that is in the best interest of our family. We ask that you respect our privacy at this time."

Billy Ray Cyrus Dating HistoryBilly Ray Cyrus Dating History
JB Lacroix/WireImage via Getty Images

In a separate statement, Billy told People, "This is a personal matter, and we are doing what is in the best interest of our family. We ask that you respect our privacy at this time." By this point, Billy's marriage was ending, Hannah Montana had finished, and Miley was working on a solo career. So, what was next?

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Back on Track, Again

For reasons only the Cyrus family would understand, Tish & Billy could not stay away from each other and gave things another shot - again. There was clearly no one else in the picture, at least to the public's knowledge. They were country sweethearts with a connection they couldn't give up on easily, holding on to that young love.

Billy Ray Tish Cyrus DivorceBilly Ray Tish Cyrus Divorce
Frazer Harrison via Getty Images

The couple revealed in a statement, "We both woke up and realized we love each other and decided we want to stay together. We both went into couple's therapy, something we haven't done in 22 years of being together, and it's brought us closer together and really opened up our communication in amazing ways."

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25 Years Later

Their main focus was to make things work for the family. In 2018, they celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary... give or take a few temporary divorces, but who's counting? Tish revealed to People what she had learned from the two near divorces, "Life is a series of adjustments, and you just try to do the best you can."

Billy Ray Tish Cyrus Marriage TimelineBilly Ray Tish Cyrus Marriage Timeline
David Crotty/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Billy responded, "Like if you are going to park your car in a parallel spot and you start backing up, and you don't quite fit in, you have to back it up a little bit. But, barring any unforeseen catastrophe, if you make the right adjustments, you will get in the spot. That's about it. Life is a series of adjustments."

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Flying Solo

Just as Tish posted a wholesome throwback photo of herself and her cowboy, captioned, "I love u Lovey….. if I had to do it all again, I wouldn't change a thing," she spoke a little too soon. According to documents People acquired, Tish called it quits for once and for all in April 2022 due to "irreconcilable differences."

Tish Miley Cyrus Divorce DramaTish Miley Cyrus Divorce Drama
Matt Winkelmeyer for The Recording Academy via Getty Images

Though it might have come as half a surprise, the couple had been spending time apart and had not been living together for two years. After 28 years of marriage and 5 children, they sadly went their separate ways. And this time, it was for good. But as the news broke, we couldn’t help but wonder: was there more to the story?

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Enter Firerose

Rumors began circulating about Billy Ray releasing new music and working in the studio with a mystery blonde. As time went on, the mystery woman was revealed and turned out to be Firerose, born Johanna Rosie Hodges. She moved from down under to the city of angels at the age of 19 to pursue a music career.

Billy Ray Firerose Relationship TimelineBilly Ray Firerose Relationship Timeline
@firerose via Instagram

Of course, moving that far across the world at such a young age is not an easy transition. Still, she had the ambition, strength, and courage to do so. Little did she know what it would take to get her big break. Of course, we can only wonder how the two came into contact, coming from opposite worlds.

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'New Day'

Cyrus knows the industry, so it makes sense that any aspiring musician would go to him for advice. And that's what happened here. Apparently, Billy took Firerose under his wing and they worked on a track together, New Day, which debuted in 2021. They performed it together on several talk shows - and the rest was history.

Billy Ray Firerose Age GapBilly Ray Firerose Age Gap
@firerose via Instagram

Firerose told Main Street Nashville in August 2021, "It is a song of hope for a new day for any single human who is searching, reaching, and praying for a new day. Here we are with this promise of a new day that we were all just praying for." For all we knew, they were collaborators. After all, Billy and Tish had not yet finalized their divorce.

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Popping the Big Question

Six months after the divorce was finalized between Momager Tish and the Kentucky native, Firerose decided this was the appropriate moment to take things to the next level. In October 2022, Rose posted a picture to Instagram of her and Billy captioned, 'Autumn,' with a red heart. Fans immediately began buzzing.

Billy Ray Firerose Engagement RingBilly Ray Firerose Engagement Ring
@firerose via Instagram

She was seen resting her head on the Old Town Road singer while her hand was placed on his chest. While it was hard to ignore their direct eye contact with the camera, all eyes were on the giant rock placed on Rose's finger, which according to Page Six allegedly cost $220K!

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Following the Signs

But prior to the big news, the couple had already made their debut on social media. During 2020, the two seemed to be quarantining together. Whether this was in Billy's second hometown of Tennessee or just in the studio together remains to be confirmed.

Billy Ray Firerose Relationship DramaBilly Ray Firerose Relationship Drama
@firerose via Instagram

It looked like she was truly aiming to embrace the whole southern lifestyle. But it wasn't just the cowboy appeal, as she and her new partner shared a passion for making music and producing songs. They were each other's harmony. And this was only the beginning.

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The Best of Both Worlds

Billy and Rose grew close, working together on music - where fans assumed they first locked eyes. However, this was not the case. It turned out they had met before - not by a couple of years, but almost a decade. Considering their age gap and hometown proximity, people were curious to know how the two were set up.

Billy Ray Firerose Age BacklashBilly Ray Firerose Age Backlash
Jesse Grant/WireImage via Getty Images

It was until an interview with Firerose that the shocking news emerged about how she truly met her husband: it was finally revealed the country rockstar and New Day singer originally met on Miley's television show, Hannah Montana, back in 2010. And fans had lots of questions.

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Celebrity Sightings

With Firerose only a few years older than the star of the show, Miley, users couldn't help but wonder what she was doing there in the first place. How had a young girl from Australia wound up on that Tribune Studios set? Soon enough, Firerose decided to set the story straight.

Billy Ray Firerose Hannah MontanaBilly Ray Firerose Hannah Montana
@firerose via Instagram

As she later revealed in an interview with Live with Kelly and Ryan, she had gone to audition for a role on the successful Disney series. But perhaps the most noteworthy part was her time bumping into one of the show's cast members... yes, Billy Ray.

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An Instant Attraction

As Billy later recalled to US Magazine in November 2022, "I loved doing that show… There's a couple old pine trees on the lot that look like Tennessee. [My dog] Tex and I would go out there in the middle of the day and he'd take care of his business and we'd stretch and I'd think how much I missed Tennessee."

Billy Ray Firerose Hannah Montana AuditionBilly Ray Firerose Hannah Montana Audition
@firerose via Instagram

He continued, "On that given day, Firerose came out of the front door. There was almost a moment of, I don't know, recognition. I was like, 'This girl's a star.' Our friendship was so solid over the years. She plays all of her own instruments and writes her own songs. We began sharing music, and it just evolved."

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Music & Lyrics

After working together on music and spending a mass of intimate time together, it was perhaps inevitable something romantic was going to come out of it. The dim-lit studio, the musical melodies, their voices matching within perfect pitch. It was a setup for romance. Once the music was out, they made public appearances together.

Billy Ray Firerose Relationship TimelineBilly Ray Firerose Relationship Timeline
@firerose via Instagram

In July 2021, New Day had just released. Billy and Rose performed together live on CNN and the Today Show in Australia on New Year's Day. Rose then shared the moment on Instagram and captioned, "Very honored & grateful to my incredible songwriting partner @billyraycyrus." But Cyrus was more than just a collaborator...

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Day in the Life

During this period of time, there was no sign of the Cyrus family entering the group chat just yet. The two were living happily and comfortably as a duo - just them, a manager, and a microphone. They traveled through the south, from stage to stage, doing live performances, all of which came to a special celebratory day.

Billy Ray Firerose Relationship DramaBilly Ray Firerose Relationship Drama
@firerose via Instagram

Rose dedicated an Instagram post to Cyrus, captioned, "The world is a better place with you in it. Happy Birthday Billy." They documented the day riding in farm trucks together and searching for UFOs. It was an unbreakable bond. They even brought in 2023 together with a new song, Time.

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"Phenomenal Support"

The 61-year-old was set to marry the bright-eyed 34-year-old songwriter. It was happening, and no one could change their mind. For Rose, she had words of her own to express amid the surprise engagement - especially considering how the two were drawn back to each other after so long.

Billy Ray Firerose Girlfriend EngagedBilly Ray Firerose Girlfriend Engaged
@firerose via Instagram

In 2021, Rose appeared on Live with Kelly and Ryan, where she gushed over her hubby from Kentucky. She admitted that they met 10 years ago on the Hannah Montana set and has been "phenomenal support" since. He told her to pursue her dreams no matter what and the two struck up a romance for a while - but never while he was married, they assured.

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The Backlash Begins

When the news was confirmed that the New Day singers were an item and set to be married, for that matter, social media users channeled their inner keyboard warrior as usual. Immediately, the digging started - and unfortunately, the couple didn't receive as many 'congratulations' tweets as hoped.

Billy Ray Firerose Backlash DramaBilly Ray Firerose Backlash Drama
@firerose via Instagram

While the two went on about their lives, not worried about what people thought, users began expressing their opinions online. People became intrigued and began tweeting about the days spent on Hannah Montana, bringing up accusations of suspicious behavior which could have damaged Billy's career.

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Questions Emerge

Twitter, being the hub of the most memorable memes and comments, began flooding with opinions based around Billy and his new flame. One user tweeted, "Billy Ray Cyrus getting engaged to a girl a year younger than Miley is gross. Why is it so hard for men to date people closer to their age." But it didn't stop there.

Billy Ray Firerose Relationship HistoryBilly Ray Firerose Relationship History
@billyraycyrus via Instagram

Another wrote, "Wait, so Billy Ray Cyrus is 61 and engaged to a woman two years younger than Miley? What is up with... men this month? Are you okay? Can you like not be weird for just a second?" While users made it clear Billy had gone down a confusing route, Firerose was old enough now to make her own decisions.

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What About Miley?

Growing up in the era of Disney Channel, it was impossible to live life without being familiar with Hannah Montana lyrics - and even more so, everyone knew who Miley was. She lived a double life every child yearned for, keeping in mind she was around 12 or 13 when filming started.

Billy Ray Miley Firerose DramaBilly Ray Miley Firerose Drama
Charley Gallay via Getty Images

To put things into perspective, Rose was on set even though she was a few years older than the teen pop sensation, as well as the other cast mates. Those who stuck by Hannah Montana back then have continued to stay by her side today, especially as the news broke out. But fans thought of how Miley felt over the tricky situation.

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No Smiles for Miles

Growing up, Miley and Billy had always been known as one of the best father-daughter duos. Realistically, how many parents can work with their child on set every day for five+ years straight? Sure, there were ups and downs, but as Billy always said, he would always be there for his 'bud.'

Billy Ray Tish Cyrus DivorceBilly Ray Tish Cyrus Divorce
@tishcyrus via Instagram

Though, it is sad to accept the fact that things turned a little sour for the Ready, Set, Don't Go partners when Miley found out about the engagement to his new blonde bae. Not to mention, it is unlikey to have sat well with her knowing the age gap. According to users, Miley seemingly decided to stand by Tish's side.

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Cutting Ties?

But online users aren't the only ones who've been fanning the flames. According to sources at E! News, "the divorce between her parents has put a strain on her relationship with her dad, and it's been hard to connect with him in the last year," the insider claimed. "She hopes they can eventually work on their relationship."

Miley Cyrus Divorce DramaMiley Cyrus Divorce Drama
Gotham/GC Images via Getty Images

As for Firerose? Miley "doesn't have a relationship" with her dad's apparent fiancée, according to the source. "She, of course, hopes he is happy," the insider added. "But Miley has been closer to her mom Tish throughout the divorce." Noted.

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Concert Confession

Amid the engagement news, Miley was performing in Mexico, and videos surfaced of her expressing her anxiety to the crowd. She said, "Has anyone here ever felt anxious, like really anxious for no reason? And insecure and uncertain? Yeah, I feel that right now… Maybe because doing what I do sometimes it feels like I skydive for a living."

Miley Cyrus viral concert anxietyMiley Cyrus viral concert anxiety
Jaime Nogales/Medios y Media via Getty Images

She continued, "Has my music been there for you in a time, where you felt anxious or sad or scared? Well, then you all owe me a favor, so I need you to help me sing this song and we're going to get through those fears together, just the way we've always have. Help me out." Was her dad's relationship to blame here? Fans thought so.

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Family First

Despite the multiple divorce files and 28 years of marriage, Tish continued to support her ex. When the divorce was finally settled, she spoke with Entertainment Tonight, explaining, "It is now time to create our own paths. We will always be family and look forward to a continued and loving shared experience as friends and parents."

Tish Cyrus Divorce SettlementTish Cyrus Divorce Settlement
@tishcyrus via Instagram

This was not Tish's first rodeo when it came down to separating from her long-term husband. But this time, it was the real deal - and she was somewhat ready. There are a lot of similarities between Tish and Miley, while they have both gone through longstanding relationships and heartbreaks, they know how to snap back like Queens.

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Good Golly, Aunt Dolly

After various family members and strangers on social media had their say, it was time for Miley’s Godmother and occasional Hannah Montana star, Dolly Parton, to step in. Though the Jolene singer is not immediate family, it affected her the same way it would if she was. Although, his response was vaguer.

Dolly Parton Billy Ray FireroseDolly Parton Billy Ray Firerose
Michael Kovac for NARAS via Getty Images

The country star told US Weekly on January 17th, "Well, we talk. He did my Christmas special… We got a chance to talk a lot and I got to meet his girlfriend. I love Billy Ray like I love Miley (Cyrus). They're family." Parton and Cyrus haven't spoken since October but she still expressed that Rose "seemed like a sweet girl."

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New Year, New Beginnings

As Billy sets off on a new road, Tish has done the exact same. Although stories were mentioned about Tish moving on from her ex, these were soon confirmed to be true. As 2022 came to a close, she proudly posted a picture of her new man to Instagram - and the comments were nothing but supportive.

Tish Cyrus Dominic Purcell RelationshipTish Cyrus Dominic Purcell Relationship
@tishcyrus via Instagram

In early January 2023, the Daily Mail wrote an article confirming the romance between Tish Cyrus and Prison Break cast member Dominic Purcell. The pair attended Miley's New Year's Eve party together and had a blast. Thankfully, no bad blood between both Cyrus parties was mentioned, and we can't wait to see what comes next...

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