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Dwight Yoakam was born in 1956 in Pikeville, Kentucky and grew up in Columbus, Ohio. Young Dwight showed a talent for entertainment from fairly early on, and by the time he was in high school he was already an active participant in the school’s drama and music programs. At the same time, Yoakam began performing with his friends in local bands, and shortly after graduating, he moved in Nashville to seek a career in music in the late 1970’s. His honky-tonk style did not immediately garner him the support he was seeking, however, and so he opted for a move to Los Angeles, where his might have better luck.
The move helped Yoakam to play not only in country-oriented venues, but to also bring his music to a wider and more diverse group of audiences; inadvertently Dwight brought country music to rock audiences and is often credited with its resurgence in popularity in the 1980’s. Dwight Yoakam’s debut, Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc., was released in 1986, and on the strength of the singles “Honky Tonk Man” and “Guitars, Cadillacs,” the album performed extremely well. The music video for “Honky Tonk Man” became the first to be played on MTV, and the success of his debut paved the way for additional albums to come, bringing him all the way into the new millennium: Hillbilly Deluxe (1987), Buenas Noches from a Lonely Room (1988), If There Was a Way (1990), This Time (1993), Gone (1985), A Long Way Home (1998), dwightyoakamacoustic.net (2000), Tomorrow’s Sounds Today (2000), Population Me (2003), and Blame the Vain (2005.)
Shortly after his music career began to take off, Dwight Yoakam also embarked on an acting career, and for the last two decades he has appeared in a number of films: Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991), Red Rock West (1992), Roswell (1994), The Little Death (1995), Sling Blade (1996), The Newton Boys (1998), When Trumpets Fade (1998), The Minus Man (1999), Panic Room (2002), Three Way (2004), Wedding Crashers (2005), Bandidas (2005), Crank (2006), Four Christmases (2008), Dirty Girl (2010), The Last Rites of Ransom Pride (2010), and Bloodworth (2010.) Yoakam also starred in South of Heaven, West of Hell (2000), a film for which he also wrote the soundtrack and script and served as producer.
Thus far in his career, Dwight Yoakam has brought more than thirty singles to the top of the country charts, with sales exceeding twenty-five million records. Nine of his albums have reached platinum status, with This Time going triple-platinum. Yoakam has also earned awards for Best Male Country Vocal Performance (Grammy, for “Ain’t That Lonely Yet”); Artist of the Year (CMT Europe), and International Touring Artist (CMA.) Dwight Yoakam continues to record and perform, having recently released his latest studio album, 3 Pears (2012.)
Dwight Yoakam Song List
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