Is Marty Stuart Related to Jerry Lee Lewis? The Surprising Truth

If you are a fan of country music, you might have wondered if Marty Stuart, the Grammy-winning singer and songwriter, is related to Jerry Lee Lewis, the rock and roll legend. The answer is yes, but not in the way you might think.

Cousins by Marriage

According to LiveAbout, Marty Stuart is not a blood relative of Jerry Lee Lewis, but a nephew by marriage. Stuart’s mother, Hilda Johnson, was married to John Henry Stuart, who was the brother of Lewis’s first wife, Dorothy Barton.  That means that Stuart and Lewis are cousins-in-law, or former cousins-in-law, since Lewis divorced Barton in 1952 after only eight months of marriage. 

Musical Influences

Despite the distant and brief connection, Stuart has always admired Lewis as a musical influence and a friend. In fact, Stuart accompanied Lewis to Memphis in 1985 and played on the Class of ’55 album that also featured Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison, and Johnny Cash.  At the end of the session, Perkins presented Stuart with his guitar. 

Stuart has also performed with Lewis on several occasions, such as at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony in 1986 and at the Grand Ole Opry in 2017.   Stuart has praised Lewis as “one of the greatest entertainers of all time” and “a national treasure”. 

Other Famous Relatives

Marty Stuart is not the only famous relative of Jerry Lee Lewis. Lewis also has two cousins who became well-known in their own fields: Jimmy Lee Swaggart and Mickey Gilley. 

Swaggart is a former televangelist who rose to fame in the 1970s and 1980s with his fiery preaching and gospel music. He was later involved in a sex scandal that tarnished his reputation and ministry. 

Gilley is a country superstar who had several hits in the 1970s and 1980s, such as “Stand By Me” and “Don’t The Girls All Get Prettier At Closing Time”. He also owned Gilley’s nightclub in Pasadena, Texas, which was featured in the movie Urban Cowboy. 

All three cousins grew up in Ferriday, Louisiana, and learned to play piano together on the family’s Stark piano. They also shared a passion for music and a rebellious spirit. 


Is Marty Stuart related to Jerry Lee Lewis? Yes, but not by blood. They are cousins by marriage through Lewis’s first wife, Dorothy Barton, who was the sister of Stuart’s father, John Henry Stuart. However, they have a close musical bond and friendship that transcends their family ties.

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