My Kind of Country

Country music from a fan's point of view since 2008

Spotlight Artist: George Strait

George StraitEarlier this year, George Strait was recognised by the Academy of Country Music as its Artist of the Decade – quite an accolade for an artist nearing the end of his third decade of country music superstardom. He is also frequently called King George – a nickname which may have been awarded by Garth Brooks in the 1990s. He has received many accolades from the industry during his career, including a record number of CMA awards (22). He was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2006.

Born in Texas on May 18, 1952, George has been consistently charting since 1981. At the start of his career, he was one of relatively few traditionally oriented country singers battling more pop-influenced sounds on the charts. His own career has outlasted not only his own contemporaries, but many of those who followed him when the neotraditional movement of the late 80s and early 90s brought real country back into the mainstream. Even the changes in radio fashion this decade have not derailed the ongoing success of George Strait.

Unusually, he has spent his entire career on one label, MCA, and worked with only a handful of producers. He is both lauded and (less frequently) criticised for his consistency as an artist, but in fact his music does show subtle signs of change through his career. Career achievements include a string of #1 singles (44 on Billboard, over 50 if other charts are included), and 25 best selling studio albums, almost all of which are currently classified at least platinum. Compilations of his hits have sold even better. He has recorded two live albums, one on his own, the other with Alan Jackson and Jimmy Buffett, and several Christmas albums. Overall, he has sold over 70 million records, making him the RIAA’s third best selling artist of all time, across all genres, behind only Elvis Presley and the Beatles. His latest release, Twang, looks like maintaining that success, topping the Billboard 200 chart in its first week of release. He briefly ventured into acting, starring in the movie Pure Country in 1992.

MKOC reviewed George’s fine 1989 release Beyond The Blue Neon back in April as part of our look back at that landmark year, and of course Twang on its release last month. We look forward to sharing some of the highlights of his career over the next month, as George Strait is our Spotlight artist for September.

7 responses to “Spotlight Artist: George Strait

  1. DimSkip September 1, 2009 at 9:24 am

    Can’t go wrong with King George!

    Just thought I’d point out that the link for the “Blue Neon” review post seems to need a couple tweaks…

    If “www.” and “.org” are removed, then it should work much better. Thanks. Looking forward to some Strait talk.

  2. Michael September 1, 2009 at 12:16 pm

    It’s going to be hard for you guys to top Reba month but I’m looking forward to seeing what you can do with George Strait!

    • Sean September 1, 2009 at 10:05 pm

      Definitely agree, but I still can’t wait! You all do such a great job. Reading your reviews is kind of a highlight of my day!

      • J.R. Journey September 2, 2009 at 10:52 am

        Thanks for the nice comments guys. Writing this stuff is always fun for us too. Plus, I’ve already learned a lot in the few months we’ve been at it. Country music is just absolutely fascinating as a genre, if you really study its past. I’m having a blast …

  3. Leeann Ward September 1, 2009 at 10:56 pm

    I’m looking forward to this.

  4. CMW September 2, 2009 at 1:04 pm

    This should be good! You folks do a bang-up job on these spotlights.

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