Photo Courtesy of Josh Kelley
The object of the singer-songwriter's affection is the subject of what he calls "the prettiest song I've ever written in my life," 'Naleigh Moon.' "Halfway around my little world / You had no idea that you were my girl / You found my arms not a moment too soon / I couldn't see past me 'til I saw you / Sweet Naleigh Moon," Josh sings in the chorus of the song, which he co-wrote with Clint Lagerberg.
"My wife and I adopted a little baby girl in 2009," explains the proud dad, married to Emmy-winning actress Katherine Heigl. "She's from South Korea, and we got her when she was nine months old. I remember getting to hold her for the first time and feeling that acceptance from her, and then she turned me into as selfless as I'm capable of being, from a pretty selfish dude to start with.
"Her name is Nancy Leigh Kelley and we push the Nancy and the Leigh together, and we call her Naleigh," Josh continues. "And the 'moon' part of it comes from her original name, Mi-Eun. I'm too redneck to say that, so I just said 'moon.' [laughs] Naleigh Moon, instead of Naleigh Mi-Eun."
Mom Katherine directed the brand-new video for 'Naleigh Moon,' making its world premiere right here on The Boot. In it, she and Josh share home movie clips that capture some special moments with their daughter, from some of her first steps to her first golf swing, which we're sure makes links-loving Dad especially proud. Watch the 'Naleigh Moon' video below.
"I don't think I could've ever written a song like that without having a kid," says Josh of 'Naleigh Moon,' his latest release from his first country album, 'Georgia Clay.' "You know how people write songs about things that they don't really experience, but they're so good at writing that they can do that? That's not me. I have to experience it to write about it. When my little girl started touching my beard and wanting me to hold her instead of other people, I was like, 'Aw, she's mine! And she loves me!'"
Naleigh has proven to be a chip off the old block. Josh has taken her to the studio with him, arming the toddler with shakers, tambourines and toy pianos. "I'll play a chord on my guitar and she'll sing within that note," the singer reveals. "I think she's gonna be a little singer or do something with music, because she's already got great pitch. It's amazing, I can sing any note and she will find it ... I remember the guy who brought her over from South Korea said the same thing about her then, and she was only nine months old. He said she was singing on the plane even then!"
'Naleigh Moon' is actually the second music video in which Naleigh's parents co-star. The two met on the set of Josh's 'Only You' video back in 2005 and had their first date after shooting wrapped. They were married in 2007.