Toby Keith Covel is a country music singer, songwriter, actor, and record producer from the United States. He was born on July 8, 1961. Toby Keith, Boomtown, Blue Moon, and Dream Walkin’ were the first four studio albums issued by the artist professionally under his given names until Keith parted ways with Mercury Records in 1998.
Keith’s breakthrough came in late 1999 with the publication of his single “How Do You Like Me Now?!” after he had signed with DreamWorks Records Nashville in 1998. This single from his 1999 self-titled album topped the country music charts in 2000, and it was one of many number ones he had while signed to DreamWorks Nashville.
- Chyno Miranda Cause of Death: What Illness Does He Suffer From?
- Albert Pujols Wife Illness: Early Life, Career & Net Worth ( Latest Update)
Toby Keith’s Biography
Into the loving arms of his parents, Carolyn Joan (née Ross) and Hubert K. Covel, Jr., Keith entered the world on November 30th, 1962 in Clinton, Oklahoma. He is one of three siblings: the others being his sister and brother. During Keith’s elementary school years, he and his family spent some time in Fort Smith, Arkansas, before relocating to Moore, Oklahoma (a suburb of Oklahoma City).
His grandfather lived in Fort Smith, and he spent many summers there with his family until they relocated to Moore. At his grandmother’s Fort Smith supper club, Billie Garner’s Supper Club, Keith first noticed the talent of local musicians. He helped out around the supper club and eventually joined the band, performing on stage. At age eight he was presented with his first guitar. After his family relocated to Moore, Keith enrolled at Highland West Junior High and later Moore High School, where he was a standout defensive end.
After finishing high school, Keith went to work in the oil fields as a derrick hand. He started out in lower positions and eventually rose to manager. While still working in the oil sector, Keith created the Easy Money Band with some of his pals when he was 20. These buddies included Scott Webb, Keith Cory, David “Yogi” Vowell, and Danny Smith. He had to leave concerts in the middle of songs on occasion because he was paged to work in the oil field.
In 1982, Oklahoma’s oil industry began a precipitous downturn, and Keith quickly found himself unemployed. He relied on his prior football experience and is currently performing as a defensive end with the semi-professional Oklahoma City Drillers while also maintaining his musical career. Keith tried out for the Oklahoma Outlaws of the United States Football League, but he was cut from the squad.
The Drillers served as a farm team for the Outlaws. So he switched his attention back to music. Even though his loved ones didn’t think he’d make it, in 1984 he started performing on the honky-tonk circuit in Oklahoma and Texas with his band Easy Money (which also featured Mike Barnes, T.A. Brauer, and David Saylors, among others).
Toby Keith’s Career
Keith frequented Music Row and a bar called Houndogs in early ’90s Nashville, Tennessee, where he busked and socialized. He gave out copies of the band’s demo tape to all of the local record labels. Keith went home dejected after hearing from no record labels interested in his music. To both himself and God, he made a pact to sign a recording contract before he turned 30. A fan who worked as a flight attendant handed Keith’s demo tape to Mercury Records executive Harold Shedd while he was a passenger on her aircraft. After hearing Keith play live and being impressed, Shedd signed him to a recording contract with Mercury.
It was 1993 when Keith’s debut single, “Should’ve Been a Cowboy,” peaked at No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs chart and peaked at No. 93 on the Billboard Hot 100. This track opened up his first album of the same name. More than three million radio plays by the end of the decade made “Should’ve Been a Cowboy” the most-played country song of the ’90s.
Three more Top 5 songs on the country charts were created from “He Ain’t Worth Missing,” and the album was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for sales of one million copies. The flip side of “Should’ve Been a Cowboy,” “A Little Less Talk and a Lot More Action,” and “Wish I Didn’t Know Now.” The album has a production that is “a bit too huge, clean, glossy, and cavernous for Keith’s good” according to Allmusic critic Stephen Thomas Erlewine, yet the songs are “quite solid” behind the polished surface.
As an added bonus, he felt it hinted at the direction Keith’s approach might take on future albums. After the success of the record, Keith went on the road with former label mates Shania Twain and John Brannen. In 1993, Keith and Twain participated in the music video for Tracy Lawrence’s “My Second Home.”
Toby Keith Reveals Stomach Cancer Diagnosis
Toby Keith has been open about his cancer treatment and announced that he has been undergoing radiation and chemotherapy. On Sunday (June 12), the 60-year-old country music singer resorted to social media to inform followers of his sickness. Keith opened his tweet with, “I was diagnosed with stomach cancer last fall.” Cancer treatment (chemo, radiation, and surgery) has consumed the better part of the past six months of my life. In other words, everything seems to be going smoothly thus far. I need some space to regroup and unwind.
— Toby Keith (@tobykeith) June 12, 2022
The singer went on, “I am looking forward to spending time with my family. However, I hope to see my supporters as soon as possible. I’m very excited! As of the time of this article’s publication, this website mentioned a handful of upcoming concert appearances for Keith throughout North America, spread out between mid-June and early November. The artist’s rep has confirmed to Billboard that a few of those shows will be rescheduled.