Buck Owens was the top-selling country act of the 1960s, with more than thirty top ten singles and fifteen consecutive #1 hits. Inventor of the Bakersfield Sound, he was hugely popular not only with country fans but with rock fans too. The Beatles covered his songs; Gram Parsons idolized him; the Grateful Dead loved him. At least six marriages, several TV shows, and a publishing and media empire followed. And a number of current country stars, ranging from Dwight Yoakam to Marty Stuart, cite him as a major influence.
Yet never before has there been a book about Buck Owens. And the man that emerges from its pages is the polar opposite of the aw-shucks image he cultivated on Hee-Haw. A tight-fisted control freak with an outsized appetite for sex, Owens could be genial at one moment and ruthlessly cruel the next.
Buck Owens chronicles his rise from poverty as the son of a tenant farmer to one of the nation’s best-loved entertainers, worth at least $100 million when he died. It also reveals for the first time the circumstances surrounding the death of his bandleader, Don Rich. It is authoritative, counting among its myriad sources seven Buckaroos, the cohost and producer of Hee Haw, a former president and vice president of Capitol Records, numerous country singers, relatives, wives, lovers, and employees. This biography paints an unprecedented portrait of not only country’s biggest star of the ’60s, but perhaps its biggest son of a bitch.
Publisher: Chicago Review Press
Pub Date: 07/2012
Size: 8.90h x 6.00w x 1.00d