Dwight Yoakam, the American singer, songwriter, actor, and film director was born on October 23, 1956, in Pikeville, Kentucky, but grew up in Columbus, Ohio. As a teenager in high school, he partook in the school’s drama and music programs, where his interest in performing grew. He also spent much of his youth singing and playing guitar in local garage bands. After a brief stint at Ohio State University, he moved to Los Angeles, intending to become a recording artist. Fast forward 20 years later, and it is pretty clear that Yoakam achieved his dreams and more.
Dwight David Yoakam
October 23, 1956
Yoakam’s particular style of music was known as new honky tonk or ‘hillbilly’ music and record labels did not consider it marketable. But he persevered and continued to perform shows in rock and punk rock clubs around the city.
Yoakam released his major-label debut L.P., “Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc,” in 1986, at a time when there was a shift in country music and Yoakam’s honky-tonk-inspired music was in demand. The album was a success and the video for his track ‘Honky Tonk Man’ was the first country music video to be played on M.T.V. His follow-up albums all saw similar success, with his 1993 album, “This Time,” reaching triple platinum status. After re-signing with Warner Bros. in 2011, he released his album “3 Pears,” which was the highest-charting album of his career, on the Billboard 200 and Billboard Country Albums charts.
Along with a successful music career, Yoakam has also had numerous roles in film and television. On the big screen, he has had roles in “Panic Room,” “Sling Blade,” and a cameo in “Wedding Crashers.” On television, he has been a guest star on “King of the Hill,” a recurring character on “Wilfred,” and a supporting role on “Goliath.” He also owns a food brand, Bakersfield Biscuits, which is available in Walmart.
Yoakam has certainly had an illustrious career, recording over 20 albums and selling over 30 million records. He has been nominated for a Grammy Award 16 times and won twice. On top of these musical accolades, he has also received a nomination for a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture.
Yoakam leaves Nashville and heads to Los Angeles to start his music career.
Yoakam releases his first major-label debut L.P., "Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc."
Yoakam drops "If There Was a Way," which sells more than two million copies and earns a double-platinum status.
"This Time" is released and becomes one of Yoakam’s most successful albums, earning triple platinum status.
Yoakam co-writes, stars in, produces, and writes the soundtrack for "South of Heaven, West of Hell," which features Vince Vaughn and Bridget Fonda.
He releases his album "3 Pears," which reaches number one on the Americana Radio chart; the album is included in more critics' "best of 2012" lists than any other artist in the country genre.
Why We Love Dwight Yoakam
He doesn’t restrict himself to one genre
Although Yoakam is considered a country music star, he has branched out into other musical genres. He has even played with hardcore punk bands.
He has had a consistent routine
Yoakam’s career has spanned over 40 years. And He is still as relevant today as he was in the early days.
He was in his high school band
He was a member of his high school marching band. His contribution was in playing the drums.
Dwight Yoakam FAQs
What is Dwight Yoakam's real name?
His full name is Dwight David Yoakam.
How many children does Dwight Yoakam have?
He has one son with his wife Emily Joyce.
What is the scar on Dwight Yoakam's head?
His scar is from his birth, where forceps were used to deliver him, which left a scar on his head.
Dwight Yoakam’s birthday dates