Steve Earle is a singer, songwriter, published author, political activist and trouble maker. When he first burst onto the music scene, it was thought he would save country music while others thought he was the "new Bruce Springsteen". But his life would take several turns, including drug addiction, trouble with the law and a strong political viewpoint. He became known as "the hardcore troubadour".
Steve Earle was born in Hampton, Virginia. His parents moved frequently during his childhood but he spent most of his youth in Schertz, Texas. By 9th grade, he had dropped out of school and moved to Houston to learn about the music business. He later moved to Nashville, Tennesee, and found employment as a songwriter and performed backing vocals on other artists' records. In 1986, he released his first album, Guitar Town, which became a critical and commercial success.
His musical career was soaring but an addiction to heroin would soon derail his life. His music was clearly suffering by the time he released his 1990 album, The Hard Way. Three years later, he had completely stopped performing and recording and was jailed on drug and firearms charges. He kicked his drug habit while incarcerated and released a bluegrass album, Train A Comin', which received a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Folk Album.
Earle started his own record label where he began experimenting with various music styles, including country, bluegrass, folk and hard rock music. He has since released several albums, a book of haiku, a collection of short stories as well as writing and directing a play.
2007 saw the release of his twelfth studio album, Washington Square Serenade. His latest album, Townes, released in May of this year, is a tribute album to his late friend and legendary musician, Townes Van Zandt.
You can learn more about Steve Earle on his official website and purchase his music here.