George Strait Tickets
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Dec 8 2017
Jun 1 2018
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Sometimes referred to as the "King of Country" and a living legend, George Harvey Strait, (born May 18, 1952), is an American country music singer. The native Texan is known for his honky tonks country western sound. He is well known for his unique style of western swing music, barroom ballads, honky-tonk style, and fresh yet traditional country western music.
A member of the Country Music Hall of Fame, Strait has been nominated for more CMA awards than any other artist. He holds 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.
While attending Southwest Texas State University SWT, Strait joined the Ace in the Hole Band, who had been advertising for a new lead singer. Beginning October 14, 1975, the band played honky tonks and bars around south and central Texas and as far east as Huntsville and Houston. They gained a regional 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. Strait became friends with Erv Woolsey, who operated one of the bars in which the band played, and who had previously worked for MCA Records. Woolsey convinced some of his Music Row connections to come to Texas and listen to Strait and Ace in the Hole play. Impressed with his performance, MCA quickly signed Strait. The Ace in the Hole Band continued to play with Strait, but now as his backup/touring band.
Strait's first single, "Unwound", quickly became a Top Ten hit. This was followed by "Down and Out" and then a whole series of #1 singles, beginning with "Fool Hearted Memory" in 1982. Strait was one of the best-selling country singers of the 1980s, and one of the few from that decade who survived the influx of rock-country singers such as Garth Brooks in the early 1990s.
His long-time producer Tony Brown, who has collaborated with Strait on more than 15 albums, attributes Strait's success to his understanding of what type of music work best for his voice and his fans, and his insistence on remaining true to his own style of music without trying to constantly reinvent himself. His signature style consists primarily of hardcore honky-tonk and Western swing.
In 1995, Strait released a four-disc boxed set career retrospective. "Strait out of the Box" became the 2nd best selling box set ever with shipments of 8 million in the United States. In Strait's more than twenty-five years of recording, all of which have been spent with MCA Records, he has garnered 55 No. 1 songs on all country charts (including Media base 24/7, the old Radio & Records charts, and the now-defunct Gavin Report charts) and has more no.1s than anyone in any genre. His 42 Billboard magazine country No. 1's have set a record, two more than previous record-holder Conway Twitty.
Strait has sold more than 62 million recordings and his certifications from the RIAA include 13 multi-platinum, 32 platinum and 35 gold albums. His overall certification numbers are third of all musicians, behind Elvis Presley and The Beatles.
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 attributes his success as a performer to the fact that he and his band, which are "musically very tight," have a large pool of songs to draw from, and perform those songs very similar to how they sound on the albums.
From 1997 through 2001 Strait headlined the George Strait Country Music Festival which included artists such has Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Kenny Chesney, Alan Jackson and many more. In an effort to introduce these acts to as many fans as possible, the festival promised not to visit any market more than twice. The festival played only a small number of dates, usually no more than 20, but still managed to be the ninth biggest-grossing tour of 1998.
Since 1983, Strait has often appeared at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, recording his album for the last time live from the Astrodome during the final show at the Astrodome in 2002. The event set the record for paid attendance at the Astrodome with 68,266 people, breaking Latin superstar Selena's previous record of approximately 67,000 in 1993. The following year the Rodeo moved to Reliant Stadium. Strait's 2004 performance at Reliant Stadium set a new Rodeo attendance record, with 68,679 people attending his performance. In his more than twenty appearances at the Houston Rodeo, Strait has played to a total of more than 1 million fans.
Strait began playing with a rock band in high school, but his preference turned to country music. He counts country singers Merle Haggard, George Jones, Bob Wills and Hank Williams as his primary country music influences. After graduating from high school, Strait enrolled in college, but dropped out and eloped with his high school sweetheart, Norma. They initially married in Mexico but repeated their vows in a church in Texas a few weeks later.
In 1971, Strait enlisted in the US Army. While stationed at Schofield Barracks in Hawaii as a part of the 25th Infantry division (light), he began performing with an Army-sponsored band, Rambling Country, which played off-base under the name Santee. On October 6, 1972, while still in Hawaii, George and Norma welcomed their first child, Jenifer. Strait was honorably discharged from the army in 1975. He chose to return to his studies, enrolling at Southwest Texas State University (SWT), now Texas State University, in San Marcos, Texas. He graduated in 1979 with a degree in agriculture.
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