Thursday, August 11, 2011

Buck Owens--I Got A Tiger By The Tail (1965)

      Buck Owens is known in the last couple of generations as one of the hosts of "Hee Haw" the long running comedy and music show. During the 60's, one could suggest that he was one of the biggest hit makers in the business. Between 1959 and 1968 he had 28 straight county top 20's with 14 of those consecutive #1's. It was no wonder between his success as a performer and his ability to connect with an audience (see video above) that he was chosen to host "Hee Haw" along with Roy Clark. The hits continued (partially because of the extra exposure) until 1979, then had a bit of revival in the late 80's. Much of that was linked to the success of Dwight Yoakam, who was deeply influenced by Owens' music.

     Owens was born in Texas but spent his older childhood and teenaged years in Arizona. As a young adult he took a job as a truck driver, which is where he first drove through the San Joaquin Valley and was impressed enough with it that with his wife, relocated there in 1951. His ability on the guitar got him gigs in Hollywood with rock and rockabilly artists through the 50's. It was that experience along with the music of his childhood, country and Mexican polkas which blended into what was many years later to be known as the "Bakersfield Sound". 



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