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George Harvey Strait
American country music singer George Harvey Strait was born on May 18, 1952 in Poteet, Texas and is well-known for his honky tonk country western sound. Also described as the King of Country, some critics call Strait a living legend (Bego, 2001). He is renowned for his inimitable method of creating western swing music, barroom ballads, honky-tonk style, and fresh yet traditional country western music.
Also a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame, Strait has been chosen for more CMA awards than any other artist. He has the record for most Number#1 songs on Billboard Country Music charts, and has had more albums certified gold or platinum in the United States than any other country artist and only Elvis Presley and The Beatles have more overall.
Though, was born in Poteet, Texas but he spent most of his childhood in Pearsall, Texas. John Byron Strait, his father, was a junior high school mathematics teacher. The Straits would often leave Pearsall on the weekends and in the summers to work at the family's 2,000 acre (8 km?) cattle ranch outside of Big Wells, Texas. When he was in third grade, Strait?s parents got divorced. His mother left, taking her daughter with her. Strait and his brother remained behind with their dad.
Strait began playing with a rock band in high school, but his fondness turned to country music. He counts country singers Merle Haggard, George Jones, Bob Wills and Hank Williams as his primary country music influences.After high school, Strait enrolled in college, but dropped out and ran away with his high school love, Norma. They initially married in Mexico but repeated their vows in a church in Texas a few weeks later.
Gaining a Recording ContractWhile attending SWT, Strait joined the Ace in the Hole Band. In early October 14, 1975, the band played honky tonks and bars around south and central Texas and as Far East as Huntsville and Houston They earned a regional fan-following and opened for national acts such as The Texas Playboys.
In the late 1970s, while Strait continued to manage a cattle ranch during the day, the band recorded several singles in a Houston studio that were released under the Dallas, Texas based D record label, but they never achieved wide recognition.
In more than twenty-five years of his recording with MCA Records, Strait's has acquired 55 No. 1 songs on all country charts (including Mediabase 24/7, the old Radio & Records charts, and the now-defunct Gavin Report charts). His 42 Billboard magazine country No. 1's have set a record, breaking the previous record by Conway Twitty.
Strait has sold over 62 million recordings. Also, his certifications from the RIAA include 13 multi-platinum, 32 platinum and 35 gold albums. His overall certification numbers are third among all musicians, behind Elvis Presley and The Beatles.
Strait has been successful in winning 16 CMA Awards, together with consecutive entertainer of the year honors in 1989 and 1990, and holds the career record for CMA nominations with seventy-three. Strait was nominated into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2006. He was the only second artist (after Eddy Arnold in 1966) to be inducted into the Hall of Fame while still keenly recording and producing amazing hits.
One of the top touring country acts of the 1990s, Strait's concerts have set attendance records at more than twenty venues around the United States. His 2006 tour, which included only 18 performances, grossed over $15 million. Strait ascribes his success as a performer to the verity that he and his band, who infact are musically very tight, have a large collection of songs to draw from, and perform those songs the same way as they can be heard from their albums.
From 1997 till 2001 Strait headed the George Strait Country Music Festival which included other country singers such as Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Kenny Chesney, and Alan Jackson etc. In an effort to launch these acts to as many fans as possible, the festival agreed not to visit any market more than two times. The festival played for only around 20 days or less, but still managed to be the ninth biggest-profiting tour of 1998.
On May 14, 1981, Strait and Norma gave birth to George Strait Jr., their second child, nicknamed as known as Bubba. Their daughter Jenifer was killed in an automobile accident in San Marcos, Tx in 1986, at the age of thirteen. The family established a foundation, The Jenifer Lynn Strait Foundation, which donates money to children's charities in the San Antonio, Texas.
Bubba, who is a graduate of Texas A&M University, is pursuing a career as a PRCA team roping competitor. Strait was able to watch his son participate at the Houston Rodeo in 2006 shortly before taking the stage for his own performance.
In leisure times, Strait enjoys fishing, playing golf, and riding motorcycles. George is a part of the PRCA and partners with his son Bubba in team roping competitions. Strait and his older brother Buddy host the annual George Strait Team Roping Classic, in which they battle against some of the best team ropers in the world. According to Strait, he hardly ever picks up a guitar when not in the studio or touring.