George Strait truly is The King of Country Music. And oh yeah, Billboard magazine agrees. This fall after a more than 30-year touring career, he will be the first country performer ever to receive Billboard’s Legend of Live Award. Congrats George!
In a release announcing the honor, Strait says, “There’s nothing more rewarding than performing in front of a sold out, pumped-up, loud crowd. That’s what keeps us coming back. I love it.”
But sadly, Strait has also announced that this year’s Cowboy Rides Away tour will end his touring career. He plans to retire from touring in 2014. But he promises to continue recording, so we’ll have to forgive him. Who could be mad at that handsome face?
The Aug. 24 edition of Billboard magazine features Strait on its cover with pages of tributes to Strait and a rare interview with the singer. With his first hit, Unwound, in 1981 Strait has had more than 60 No. 1 singles and sold more than $68.5 million.
When asked in the Billboard interview how he’s been able to maintain that consistency and career longevity, Strait said,
“It’s hard to say why I’ve had the longevity that I’ve had. Maybe it’s not doing all of the interviews. I’ve definitely been conscious of overexposure, though. I don’t do everything that presents itself. I don’t do a lot of TV. I’ve never let the music business be the only thing in my life. There are other things that I love to do as well…I really miss being able to rope like I used to. I love to fish, hunt and play golf. I just love to be outdoors, enjoying God’s beautiful creation. I do have great and loyal fans. It’s amazing that I still see fans from the ’80s at some of my shows today. That’s pretty special.”
You’re pretty special to us too George. Congratulations on more than 30 years of success.
Here’s to 30 more!