Stephen Ray Vaughan, better known as Stevie, was an American musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer born on October 3, 1954. Vaughan was best known as the frontman and guitarist of the trio Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble. His career goes back to 1965, and he is regarded as one of the most revered blues musicians in history. Join us to celebrate Vaughan’s birthday today!
Stephen Ray Vaughan, better known as Stevie, was an American musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer who created a colossal impact on blues music. He was born on October 3, 1954, in Dallas, Texas. He was a Libra and the second-born of his parents. Vaughan’s childhood was far from rosy. He suffered the wrath of his father’s alcohol-induced temper, which often included violence. However, he didn’t let the abuse deter him from his love of music. Vaughan was inspired to play the guitar by his brother, Jimmie Vaughan, at seven. He committed himself to learn the instrument before Jimmie gifted him his hand-me-down guitar, a Gibson ES-125T. He joined his first band: the Chantones, soon after. Due to the band’s lack of proficiency, Vaughan joined another band: Brooklyn Underground, and played professionally in bars and clubs.
In 1972, Vaughan dropped out of high school and moved to Austin to focus on his growing music career. By 1978, he joined forces with Tommy Shannon and Chris Layton to form Double Trouble. The band got signed to Epic Records in March 1983, and a few months later, they achieved mainstream success with their debut studio album “Texas Flood.” After a series of successful concert tours and later television appearances, Vaughan became a leading figure in the blues revival of the 1980s. He earned fame in Europe, paving the way for guitarists like Robert Cray, Robben Ford, etc. Vaughan and Double Trouble released four more albums as a group. The trio’s last album, “The Sky is Crying,” was released posthumously in 1991 after Vaughan’s demise.
Vaughan had his demons, but he worked through them in rehab before touring in 1986. His life was cut short on August 27, 1990, when he was killed with four others in a helicopter crash in East Troy, Wisconsin. His family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the helicopter company, which got settled out of court. Even in death, Vaughan’s music witnessed more success. At the time of his death, Vaughan was in a relationship with Janna Lapidus. He was previously married to Lenora Bailey from 1979 to 1988. Vaughan was survived by his family and friends. He had no children.
Vaughan forms the band with Shannon playing bass and Layton playing drums.
Double Trouble signs to Epic Records.
Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble release their debut studio album, “Texas Flood.”
The trio release “In Step,” which becomes Vaughan’s most commercially successful album.
“The Sky is Crying” posthumously drops and is the fifth and final studio album by the trio.
Vaughan gets posthumously inducted.
Why We Love Stevie Ray Vaughan
He was talented
Vaughan revived blues-rock. He was a talented singer and musician who significantly influenced the music genre.
He was open about his struggles
Vaughan publicly struggled with alcohol and drugs. His transparency about his struggles created awareness for addiction and drug abuse.
He created a legacy
Vaughan created a timeless and enviable legacy. He is named one of the greatest blues musicians and guitarists of all time.
5 Surprising Facts
His first guitar was a toy
Vaughan got famous for his signature guitar but his first guitar was a toy from Sears.
He worked for 70 cents an hour
Vaughan washed dishes and took out the trash at a local hamburger stand, where he earned 70 cents an hour.
He played the guitar behind his back
Vaughan was a skilled entertainer who sometimes played the guitar behind his back or plucked its strings with his teeth.
He worked with his brother
Vaughan’s fourth studio album was with his brother, Jimmie.
He struggled with substance abuse
Vaughan struggled with drug and alcohol abuse for the majority of his life.
Stevie Ray Vaughan FAQs
What caused Stevie Ray Vaughan’s helicopter to crash?
Investigations proved that the crash was a repercussion of the pilot’s improper planning decision.
Where is Stevie Ray Vaughan’s grave?
Vaughan was buried at the Laurel Land Memorial Park, Dallas.
Could Stevie Ray Vaughan read music?
The musician and guitarist couldn’t read music.
Stevie Ray Vaughan’s birthday dates