What is it about George Strait anyway? What keeps his fans screaming for more, and how does he continue to outdo himself? Along with his awesome voice and style we know his handsome cowboy looks and that wonderful smile have a lot to do with us wanting more Strait.
He is 'the real deal,' his voice is reassuring and warming. He has superlative stage presence, and a great ability to connect with his fans. Simply put it's not a simple thing, because it's the entire package . These are my words; my expression as best I can of my thoughts and feelings regarding a huge talent, and a kind human being, Mr. George Strait.
His Fans love his rich buttery baritone, that handsome face, the piercing green of his eyes, and the witty mind behind them. That heart fluttering palpitating "warm you to the toes" smile is an image that remains with you for years. Within his hint of a strut walk there saunters the Wranglered fineness of a good man living his life his way, in the deep tradition of a fourth generation Texan. Men and women alike respect and love the Man for who he is -- the real deal, a genuine cowboy, an excellent rider and roper, a Texas rancher, dedicated proud father, loyal husband, and steadfast friend with an easy smile and contagious laugh.
He's done it his way and walks the talk. George Strait knows who he is and is comfortable in his own skin. He has nothing to prove. What ego he has filters down to his slim hips from where it quietly resides in his witty subtle mind. When this man saunters on stage he owns it. A superb entertainer and a master vocalist George's warm baritone and relaxed phrasing so pleasing to the ear and reassuring to hear on radio continue to keep him at the top of the industry charts, and more importantly, deeply imbedded within his fan's hearts -- who sigh and clamor for more Strait any thing.
George continues to amaze me, and I expect that he always will. He made me extremely happy when on August 8, 2008 he released a music video for the title cut of his album "Troubadour." The video was made in Bulverde, in the hill country north of San Antonio Texas, directed by the same director who did my other favorite video "Seashores of Old Mexico."
"Twang" and " Here For A Good Time" that are heavy competition. He co-wrote seven of the ten songs on this CD! The first single released was "Here For a Good Time" which went to Number One on the charts, and so George received his first award as a writer! He wrote and recorded "I Will Always Remember You" for his fans. A tender personal acknowledgement and message to his fans that his fans took to heart. How many entertainers DO that! Personally I wish he had done a video for "Blue Marlin Blues." So great. "Twang," was released August 11, 2009. George completed a summer tour, which included four Texas dates, the very last one being in San Antonio where he walked on to a sell crowd and surpassed in own record in the Alamo Dome. He performed an amazing show, and in his encore brought on local mariachis to accompany him with "El Rey." There was a lot of love and emotion in that crowd, it was a wonderful performance. The Man is amazing, and is leaving a wonderful legacy. In 2012 he toured with Martina McBride for the " Here For a Good Time " album which was released September 5, 2011. George announced his retirement from the road. His final tour was the "Cowboy Rides Away" two year tour which ended June 7th, 2014 in Arlington, Texas. Go to that link for further updates. George released the "Love Is Everything" album May 14th. 2013. He sang several songs from that album during his "Cowboy Rides Away" tour. The CD/DVD for this concert was released September 16, 2014. The DVD has all but one song from the concert, and will satisfy Strait fans. It's a concert you will watch often, and enjoy more each time you watch it. "Cold Beer Conversation° was released September 25, 2015, NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Oct. 2, 2015) – Fans were ecstatic when George Strait announced that he would be heading to Sin City for an exclusive concert series at the Las Vegas Arena in 2016 and releasing his new album, Cold Beer Conversation, last week. The demand for new music from Strait translated to an immediate sellout of all six dates of his “Strait to Vegas” run after tickets went on sale today, with more dates to be added. The staggering response from fans already prompted Strait to add more shows. When George is not nominated in one of the award shows I remind others that Mr. Strait is now competing only against himself. He is beyond the usual awards, and has nothing to prove. He has only to do what he has been doing his entire career- be himself. In 2013 being himself earned him the ASCAP Founders Award, the Billboard Live Award, and his third CMA Entertainer of the Year award in three decades of making music. In 2014 George received the ACM Entertainer of the Year Award.
These pages are dedicated to the Man residing within the Artist of the Decade, Country Music Legend, King George Strait.
"If It Wasn't For Texas" sound control
George was born in the old hospital in Poteet Texas near Pleasanton. At the time his parents lived in a little yellow house on Goodwin near the corner of Bryant in Pleasanton proper. The nearest hospital was in Poteet so that's where George was born. George's father moved the family to Pearsall a few years later and took over the family's 2000-acre ranch near Big Wells.
George is a fourth generation Texas Rancher. He currently owns multiple properties in Texas, with his home ranch being in South Texas brush country, and his San Antonio home being at the gated community 'the Dominion' which is in north San Antonio.
Little George, what a babydoll
1979, at 27, Graduating from Southwest Texas State with a degree in Agricultural Education. He was playing clubs at night with the Ace in the Hole Band , working full time as a ranch foreman in Martindale Texas, and finishing school George Strait, at 30, 1982, "The Fireman" was just beginning to create and fan the heartfires in female fans.
His father, John Strait, taught junior high math during the week. His sons, Buddy and George, were among his students. On weekends, George and his older brother Buddy helped their father and their grandparents tend cattle on the family's 2000-acre ranch 40 miles southwest of Pearsall in Big Wells. The ranch is still owned by the Straits.
Mr. John Strait dedicated his life to raising his two spirited sons. It wasn't until both boys had left home to start families and lives of their own that John started going out, and met Anna, someone to share his life with. Anna seems to be a very sweet and intelligent lady. I met the Straits several times, and it was obvious where the Strait boys got their sense of humor. Mr. John Strait passed away on June 4th, 2013 at 91 years of age.
George is an excellent golfer, with a handicap in 2006 of 8.4. He is an avid fisherman, boater, and hunter; loves the outdoors, and excels as a team roper. He enjoys roping with his son Bubba, which is just one of his passions when not on tour. He and Bubba have started writing songs together with the first ones being released on the "Twang" album. They had seven on the album "Here For A Good Time." They also have co-written songs on George's "Love Is Everything" album.
George ranches, and enjoys riding out to check his cattle and horses. He has a foreman, and hands on his ranches, but you might find George working right along beside them. He enjoys raising and taking care of his quality quarter horses, which are another passion. Norma and George have a beautiful boat that they enjoy when the weather is fair.
Mr. Strait carries himself with assurance and determination. It took stubbornness and perseverance to carve out and keep the career he has enjoyed. That and the right kind of woman beside him. This is an intelligent witty man who knows who he is, and knows his capabilities.
In 1992's " Pure Country " which was specifically written for George, he starred as Dusty Chandler, a Country Music Super Star who after confronting an overbearing female manager walks out on the bright lights, smoke, and fame to go back to his roots where he finds himself and regains his values. If you have not seen this movie I highly recommend it. George did a great job in the role and it is pure joy to watch him in this movie.
I was at the final filming at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, and it was a wonderful experience having George just a few feet away for so long as they filmed him singing 'I Cross My Heart." George is just as you see him, he is the real deal.
"Pure Country" not only has a wonderful soundtrack but it was a special gift for George's fans to be able to watch George on the big silver screen doing what he does exceedingly well. This was the first album that friend and producer Tony Brown helped George with. Tony is still co-producing albums with George.
George as Dusty in 1992's " Pure Country ." These are a few of my favorite pictures from the movie. He's got that intense determined look on his face that I have seen so often throughout the years, and just look at those eyes.
I decided to add some more PC pictures here since it was this movie and the award winning album that gave a punch to George's career in 1992. For fans like me who had been around for years it was suddenly harder to get concert tickets, and when you got there the audience was full of people from 5 years of age to 80, and they were all having a great time, and loving George!
My view of George during the final filming of Pure Country at the Mirage in Las Vegas. This was when he would lean close to the camera and sing "I Cross My Heart" to Harley. They were filming her crying scene for the end of the movie. I can't help but think of the experience I had there, having George in front of me for so long, every time I hear that song. I won't go into what I went through in order to go to this filming. Suffice it to say that it was worth everything I did without. I know there was film on the cutting room floor, and a piece of it was probably partly my fault. I took advantage of an opportunity. With the light and camera on us instead of yelling 'Dusty!' like we had rehearsed, I looked up at him and yelled "I love you, George!" And that is all I am going to say about that.
Norma Strait; is the person who has been with him through it all, she is his anchor. George married Norma in 1971, a shy quiet girl he had grown up with in Pearsall whom he had known in high school. After George graduated they had their first date. After some time went by it hit George that he was "missing out on a good thing." He asked Norma out again, and soon they eloped to Nuevo Laredo, Mexico to get married. They repeated their vows for their families in church back in the states a few weeks later on December 4th, 1971.
Following is a wav, part 1 and part 2, of young George laughing and talking about getting married twice to Norma - once when they eloped to Mexico, and again when they wed in Texas with parents and family present.
"I do." "I do too." Norma has been the strength behind the man, and was the motivation encouraging George to try music one more time when he was ready to give it up for a steady job in order to support his family by designing cattle pens in Uvalde Texas. She has said that after George gave his band notice he was moping around the house, and was not himself. She couldn't bear to see him that way, and let him give up when he wanted a career in music so badly. She talked him into giving it one more year. Six months later, with Erv's help George had recorded "Unwound," and signed with MCA Records-Nashville for a recording contract. Norma is the first person George's fans have to thank for his career, his music, and the many moments of pleasure he has given us in concert. She continues to go to his concerts, and can be seen enjoying his music, always there for him when he walks off that stage.
"We've learned to cope with the fact that the George Strait on stage is an image. And the one at home with my wife and Bubba is a family-loving man. You've got to keep the stage world and your real world separated or you're headed for trouble. In other words, you can't live out the songs you sing." ~ George Strait
At the Pure Country Premiere in Nashville, Oct. 1992
Dallas Reunion Arena, New Year's Eve, 1993, what an awesome way to bring in the New Year, it was great. Norma walked on stage with two glasses of champagne at two minutes to midnight. And yes, she got several kisses before he let her walk off the stage. He looked back at her as she was leaving, then quickly caught her and planted another kiss on her. My friend and I got a big grin when he heard us giggling at him, and cheering him on. Before he left the stage that night he came over and bowed to us, and waved good-bye. In 1981 with the support and help of his friend and long-time Manager Erv Woolsey , George received his chance with MCA Records-Nashville, and a few months later "Unwound" climbed up the charts to number six giving George a firm hold in Country Music that he has never lost. I remember I was washing my car in the driveway the first time I heard "Unwound." My boxer pups were playing around my feet, I leaned against the car and listened, and I was loving what I was hearing. That voice! - honest to God Country music! That was the start of my Strait fever, and that's my handle today.
George was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame on November 6th, 2006. The Academy of Country Music recognized George as the Artist of the Decade , the day after the 2009 ACM Awards by taping a two hour tribute from his peers, a TV special, to be aired on CBS on May 27th, 2009. George still has the same people working for him, the same Manager , the same band members , the same studio musicians, and his biggest fans have grown older right along with him. All of this shows you clearly what kind of man George Strait is.
That's Bubba peeking over his Dad's shoulder. Mom is right behind him.
A Quarter Horse given to George by MCA
The Straits stepping out in style at the ACM Awards. George Strait Jr. (Bubba) was born on May 14th, 1981. The song "Love Without End" was written - and sung - with Bubba in mind. The photo, was taken by Norma.
In 1993, a year after his acting and singing debut on his Dad's movie "Pure Country," Bubba was on the road with his Dad. He would often join his Dad on stage for a few moments. No one would have guessed that in 2014 Bubba would join his Dad on stage to sing a song he had written, and his Dad had recorded, "Arkansas Dave," in front of a record crowd of almost 105,000 at Arlington Texas, Cowboys AT&T Stadium. This would be George Strait's final structured tour concert.
Fifth generation Texas cowboy, formerly a professional Team Roper on the Pro Rodeo circuit, and now a songwriter, Bubba Strait graduated with a Business degree from Texas A&M University. This is his picture.
Bubba has developed his own "following" so I added a webpage for him. Website for Bubba Strait
All donations made during the "Cowboy Rides Away" 2013 and 2014 final tour were given to this Foundation to benefit children's charities in Jenifer's honor and memory.
Influences: Country Music: Merle Haggard, Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys, Hank Williams, George Jones, and Conway Twitty. George also admired Frank Sinatra as a singer. His duet of "Fly Me To The Moon" with Mr. Sinatra can be found on George's record setting Strait Out of the Box, a box set of previously released, and unreleased songs.
Former jobs : Foreman, managed a cattle ranch in Martindale Texas from sunrise to sunset, played south Texas honky tonks at night. George was working with cattle in a pasture hearing "Unwound" being played on the radio in his Chevy pick-up. He said out loud "What is wrong with this picture!" He needed to tour.
Hobbies: Team-roping (though Roping is more of a daily life style for him rather than a hobby), George is a card-carrying member of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, hunting elk, fishing for that record setting big-mouth bass, fly-fishing, deep sea fishing for blue marlin on his beautiful boat, downhill skiing, and golf, to name a few. He goes to NBA games to see his favorite team the San Antonio Spurs, and he enjoys football, with his favorite team being the Dallas Cowboys. He and Norma love to travel, and have been to Africa several times on Safari.
Annual event: The George Strait Team Roping Classic had been held in Kingsville, Texas annually since 1983. George, Bubba, and George's Brother, Buddy and his sons, Walker and Trey, competed each year at the event. It is a family affair, a gathering of friends, Rodeo Champions - the best ropers in the world - and of hardcore George Strait Fans who are a special breed.
In July 2000 the Roping was moved to The San Antonio Rose Palace and the concert was dropped in favor of concentrating on what has become one of the best Team Roping competitions there is. By dropping the concert it allowed George to concentrate on his roping, and as a fan I liked it better because it allowed me to concentrate on the roping, enjoy George's efforts, and not be concerned about the concert. I love watching George and Bubba ride and rope. The Team Ropers love the new site and George and family have done themselves proud.
George heading, and Bret Beech heeling. I'm in the crowd in back behind the HEB sign.
I always looked forward to seeing Buddy at the roping, watching him with his family and especially with his brother George. I had the opportunity a few times to tease him, and his response was that big smile and laugh. I will always remember Buddy with that smile. It was always wonderful at the end of the roping when he would turn and wave good-bye to us with that big smile on his face.
I've added some candid shots here, collected thru the years, so you can see more of "The Man."
In his Nashville office, working hard.
Champion Roper and good friend of George's -Roy Cooper and George. With the temptation of a racetrack in front of them they couldn't resist. They broke into a race during an opening parade at Ruidoso Downs Race Track in New Mexico. George won by a nose, Roy was laughing too hard to win.
Talking with a buddy at the team roping.
At the Dallas concert with Jimmy Buffett and Alan Jackson, 2004, George was real proud of his shirt, and of teasing the fans. Even fishing with a friend, somebody wants a picture.
Personality : He is a private man, a man of few words unless you get him talking about Africa or one of his favorite subjects. He is a cowboy at heart with a captivating smile and charm; known for quality over quantity, and down-to-earth values. He is a man of constants -- he's worked with the same people, and had the same friends for many, many years.
Personally I have found him to be a kind, caring, and gentle soul, with a good memory, and a great sense of humor. He is who he is, does not try to be something he is not, and is comfortable being himself. He has a quick witty mind, and that wonderful sense of humor - and can be a huge tease. His talent is natural but he has worked hard for what he has. He is a competitor, and has been careful with his career, remaining in charge of his image. This is an entertainer with natural charisma that reaches out far beyond those stage lights. He touches people, they feel drawn to him, and close to him, because he is one of them.
Along with his phenomenal success in life George has had his tragedies, hard times, and sad times like the rest of us. On June 4th, 2013 George and family lost Mr. John Byron Strait, after a lengthy hospital stay. His Dad was a huge influence on George. Faith, and the love and support of Norma, Bubba, and long time friends have helped him persevere.
A sense of humor -- you bet! Many thanks to Rick Henson for this picture, it's priceless.
Enjoying the San Antonio Spurs, and yes, Norma was at his side.
George in NYC for the 2005 CMAs . George teasing his fans with a bare foot while showing the premiere of his music video for "Seashores of Old Mexico at his George Strait Team Roping in March of 2006. I about fell down laughing at him.
George has said that he rarely picks up a guitar at home, except for ads like this one. Bubba changed that by becoming interested in playing guitar himself, and becoming a songwriter. His interest motivated George to start writing again. The results can be found on George's most recent albums.
George on Chorizo, another one of his favorite horses, and one of my favorites too.
Mr Strait is "a man's man," respected for his talent, business savvy, and the way he has managed to live a somewhat normal life while steering and enjoying a phenomenal success - doing it his way. He never did take off the hat as Nashville producers requested. He is himself, in all ways.
George and his family live in South Texas not far from his birthplace, and own a big piece of South Texas brush country acreage where he has his main ranch breeding and raising Quarter Horses. They also have several other homes in chosen places, including one just north of San Antonio.
In 2011 George and his friend Tom bought a golf resort, the Resort at Tapatio Springs , and they have updated it and made it a beautiful resort. It officially re-opened on 11/11/11. Should you want to golf in Texas hill country where George golfs, Tapatio is located in Boerne Texas. The link is found at the bottom of this page. There is a hotel, and restaurant on the premises. Watch out for the deer, drive slow.
Tamara, Bubba, Harvey, George, Norma Strait, March 2014
You might hear women talking about George, women of all ages, fantasizing and daydreaming about Mr. Strait. There is no denying his handsome sensual manliness along with his good looks, and gentle ways. These qualities along with his steadfast loyalty to his family make the Man. There also is the fact that he is a genuine Rancher with Texas history and tradition in his upbringing; he is "the real deal," a Cowboy. That entire Strait package is appealing to women of all ages.
The Strait reality here is that there is only one woman in George Strait's life - Norma. Norma has handled George's success very well, has business savy, and has been his constant motivator and supporter. She has been there beside him through the good times, and the bad. I have a lot of respect and admiration for the way she has handled both George's success and the constant desire from his fans for more of him. In George's words; "She takes good care of me, and I am spoiled." He deserves it, he has worked hard, lost and given up much in his lifetime. What counts is what he has done with his life, and how he has affected others.
Norma and George celebrate their Wedding Anniversary in December.
Here are some of my favorite pictures of Norma and George
Enjoying the ACM "Artist of the Decade" award show at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, April, 2009
One of my favorite pictures of George, from the Troubadour Video photo session.
Tom Cusick and George Strait Bubba and George
On April 10, 2009 George's big brother John Byron Strait, Jr, (Buddy) passed. The Strait patriarch, John Byron Strait, Sr., George's Dad, passed on June 4th, 2013.
George Strait completed his final (two year) structured tour June 7th, 2014 in Arlington, Texas at Cowboy's Stadium. For more information see "Cowboy Rides Away."
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