George Strait (born May 18, 1952) is an American country music artist. He holds second place for most number one hits on all country music charts with a total of 51, second only to Conway Twitty.
Strait was born in Poteet, Texas and grew up in Pearsall, Texas. His father, John Strait, was a junior high school mathematics teacher. The Straits would often leave Pearsall on the weekends and the summers to work at the family's 2,000 acre (8 km²) cattle ranch outside Big Wells, Texas. When he was in fourth grade, Strait's parents divorced. His mother left the family taking his sister with her while he and his brother remained with his father. He began playing with a rock band in high school, but his preference turned to country music. Strait counts country singers Merle Haggard, George Jones, Bob Wills and Hank Williams as his early musical influences.
After graduating from high school, Strait enrolled in university but dropped out and eloped to Mexico with his high school sweetheart, Norma. They repeated their vows in a church in Texas a few weeks later. In 1971, he enlisted in the US Army. During this stint in military service, he began performing with an Army-sponsored band, Rambling Country (who played off the base under the name Santee), when he was stationed in Hawaii. In 1972, while still in Hawaii, George and Norma had their first child, Jenifer. After leaving the army in 1975, Strait returned to his studies, enrolling at Southwest Texas State University (SWT) in San Marcos, Texas. He graduated in 1979 with a degree in agriculture.
While attending SWT, he joined the Ace in the Hole Band. The band played honky tonks and bars around south and central Texas and as far east as Huntsville and Houston. They gained a regional following and opened for national acts such as The Texas Playboys. In the late 1970s, the band recorded several singles in a Houston studio that were released under the Dalla... Read more