After high school he enrolled at Ohio State, but he lasted only two years before hightailing it to Nashville in 1976 with dreams of launching a music career.
He’s long strived to exist simultaneously in past and future tenses, with the proven certainty of the former complementing the freedom and openness of the latter.
Born in Kentucky and raised in Columbus, Ohio, Dwight was the oldest of three kids born to a bookish mother, who made him read the King James Bible, and an ex-Army father with a penchant for hot-rodding.
Yoakam didn’t sell as well as Brooks, the era’s reigning big hat, nor did he really try.
Brooks was a natural-born crossover artist who covered Billy Joel and aspired to arena-rock production values; Yoakam, meanwhile, had the instincts of a preservationist, reviving the career of his mentor Buck Owens by inviting him to duet on 1988’s mariachi-accented “Streets of Bakersfield,” one of Yoakam’s two no. But Yoakam became a pop star anyway, and he dated one of the era’s hottest starlets, Sharon Stone, though the relationship didn’t end amicably.
" Yoakam estimates that he could own a building of his own for what he’s paid in rent over the years, but he can’t give up the view, which looks out over Sunset and the adjoining Hollywood Hills.
Somewhere in those hills is Yoakam’s homestead, a 5,900-square-foot Spanish colonial mansion that he designed himself.
Famous celebrity couples like Keith Urban and Nicole Kidman and Brad Paisley and Kimberly Williams Paisley are the exception to what usually happens when a country singer dates a Hollywood star.
Actually, both of those country men found real love only celebrity dating experiences gone wrong.
So why is this renaissance cowpunk part of a dying breed? ” Dwight Yoakam says to his sandy-colored Rios of Mercedes cowboy boots. I don’t remember.” It’s a late Sunday afternoon in early April, and the greatest country singer of the last 30 years is looking for a misplaced tangent inside his spacious office on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood.