The catalog of throwback country songs is a book of many pages. I know I will not run out of discoveries anytime soon. Which leads me to my selection this week of an artist who was part of my “wild abandon” days, Dwight Yoakam. In all honesty he still is part of those days because I think we still have them.
In the late ’70s when Dwight set out to start his career in Nashville his style did not fit with the pop “urban cowboy” music at the time and his honky tonk music was not deemed marketable. Making no strides in Nashville, he moved to Los Angeles on a mission to take his “Hillbilly” music to a new audience. Writing all his own songs and performing in various rock and punk rock clubs throughout Los Angeles he was credited for rock audiences accepting country music.
Dwight’s self-financed debut EP, “Guitars, Cadillacs Etc. Etc,” was the start of a string of hits; “Honky Tonk Man,” “Little Sister,” “1000 Miles,” “Ain’t That Lonely Yet” and “Streets of Bakersfield” with Buck Owens just to name a few. He is not only a pioneer in country music, but an accomplished actor receiving acclaim in 1996 for his role in “Sling Blade.”
It was truly impossible to select just one song of Dwight Yoakam’s, so I chose a medley of songs from his appearance at the Grand Ole Opry and on GAC’s Opry Live. Dwight has a new album, “Second Hand Heart” due out April 14th, check out the details and more on his website: http://www.dwightyoakam.com/secondhandheart