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Gene Watson's peers within the country music industry believe in the sheer talent of this unassuming man from east Texas, so much so that Gene is regarded by many of them as 'the singer's singer' - and rightly so!
All of Gene Watson's Peers who were contacted during 2011 were most gracious with their time and words. It is here, within this special part of the Gene Watson Fan Site, that you have an opportunity to read a quote from Clint Black, which he submitted to this site on Saturday 23 July 2011.
Sean Brady would like to take this opportunity to say 'thank you' to Clint Black, who made a special contribution to this unique part of this online 'celebration of a Lone Star Hero'.
This quote was submitted on Saturday 23 July 2011.
'Sure would, Sean. Here you go!
Gene Watson has one of the purest voices in country music.
I've been a fan since I first started playing guitar!'
Thank you, Clint Black, for your support of Gene Watson.
About Clint Black...
Clint Black was born Clint Patrick Black in Long Branch, New Jersey on Sunday 4 February 1962, the youngest of four children.
Clint's family moved back to Texas, where his father had been raised, before Clint was one year old. He was raised in Katy, Texas.
Music was always present in the house. Clint taught himself to play harmonica before he was thirteen years old; when he was fourteen, he wrote his first song.
When he was fifteen, Clint learned to play guitar. As a teenager, he joined his elder brothers, Mark, Kevin and Brian, in their small band. On Saturday afternoons, the family would host backyard barbecues and invite the neighbourhood to listen to the boys sing. Some weekends would attract up to seventy people. Clint eventually dropped out of high school to play with his brothers, before he became a solo act.
Clint Black was initially drawn to a variety of musical genres. He chose to focus on country music in the early 1980s, after singers George Strait and Reba McEntire transformed the genre.
For six years, Clint Black supported himself as a construction worker, bait cutter and fishing guide, while singing at various lounges as a solo singer and guitarist. At one of the gigs, he met another guitarist, Hayden Nicholas. The two men connected musically and began a song-writing partnership that would last decades.
In the late 1980s, Clint Black delivered a demo of their collaboration 'Nobody's Home' to record promoter Sammy Alfano. Within two days of that delivery, Clint Black was invited to a meeting with Bill Ham, who managed ZZ Top.
Clint Black soon signed with RCA Records, at that time considered one of the 'most aggressive' labels in country music. Clint Black's first album, 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989), was released on Tuesday 2 May 1989.
Each song on 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989) was penned at least in part by Clint Black; four of the tracks were attributed solely to him, while the rest were collaborations with Nicholas Hayden. In a departure from most other country albums, Clint Black used his road band instead of session musicians to record the album.
'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989) was a critical and commercial success, reaching No.1 on the Billboard country albums chart and was certified platinum in 1990. The first single, 'A Better Man', reached No.1 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs Chart in early June 1989. This marked the first time in fourteen years that a debut single by a male artist had peaked at the top of the chart.
In total, four singles off of Clint Black's debut album reached No.1 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs Chart, namely 'A Better Man' (No.1, 1989), 'Killin' Time' (No.1, 1989), 'Nobody's Home' (No.1, 1990) and 'Walkin' Away' (No.1, 1990); this was the first time any country artist had accomplished this feat. A fifth single, 'Nothing's News', reached No.3 in 1990.
Clint Black swept the Country Music Association (CMA) Awards in 1989, winning in six different categories, including the 'Horizon Award' for best newcomer. At the end of 1989, his singles, 'A Better Man' and 'Killin' Time' were the No.1 and No.2 songs on the year-end Billboard country music singles charts. It had been thirty-six years since another artist had claimed both top spots in a single year.
In 1990, Clint Black became known as one of Nashville's 'hat acts'; like other country music artists such as Garth Brooks, Alan Jackson and Mark Chesnutt, Clint was a relative newcomer who wore a hat and had a 'clean, neo-traditional sound with pop appeal'.
Clint Black's second album, 'Put Yourself In My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990), was released on Tuesday 27 November 1990. It reached No.2 on the Billboard Country Albums Chart and was reached the Top 20 of the Billboard American pop album charts.
This success on the pop charts resulted from a change in the way Billboard calculated album sales; a new reliance on Nielsen SoundScan instead of information from selected record stores showed that sales of country albums had previously been undercounted.
'Put Yourself In My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990) did not meet with as much critical acclaim as Clint's debut, but nonetheless it still included four hit singles; 'Put Yourself In My Shoes' (No.4, 1990), 'Loving Blind' (No.1, 1990), 'One More Payment' (No.7, 1991) and 'Where Are You Now' (No.1, 1991).
The track 'This Nightlife' also charted at No.61 from unsolicited airplay.
It was also at this time that Clint Black began touring with Alabama.
Clint Black began dating actress Lisa Hartman in 1990. The couple kept their relationship very quiet; the first picture of the two of them together was not published until the week they were engaged. The couple married in Katy, Texas in October 1991.
By mid-1992, Clint Black's first two albums, 'Killin' Time' (RCA Records, 1989) and 'Put Yourself In My Shoes' (RCA Records, 1990), had sold a combined five million copies.
Clint Black's third album, 'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992), was released on Tuesday 14 July 1992. The album had been expected the year previously; during the delay, the country music scene had altered. Both Alan Jackson and Travis Tritt had achieved greater success and Billy Ray Cyrus had become a teen idol. The competition that Clint Black faced was now much stiffer than with his earlier albums.
'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992) was Clint's first album that he co-produced with James Stroud. It reached No.2 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart and three singles were released from it; 'We Tell Ourselves' (No.2, 1992), 'Burn One Down' (No.4, 1992) and 'When My Ship Comes In' (No.1, 1993).
'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992) also included 'A Woman Has Her Way', which was co-written by Clint Black, David Bellamy and Jerry Lynn Williams.
In order to promote 'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992), Clint Black launched 'The Hard Way Tour' on Friday 26 June 1992, a tour that ran for eleven months.
Clint Black's fourth album, 'No Time To Kill' (RCA Records, 1993), was released on Tuesday 13 July 1993, almost a year after the release of 'The Hard Way' (RCA Records, 1992).
'No Time To Kill' (RCA Records, 1993) reached No.2 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart and five singles were released from it; 'A Bad Goodbye', which was a duet with Wynonna Judd (No.2, 1993), 'No Time To Kill' (No.3, 1993), 'State Of Mind' (No.2, 1993), 'A Good Run Of Bad Luck' (No.1, 1994) and 'Half The Man' (No.4, 1994).
The track 'A Good Run Of Bad Luck' was also featured on the 1994 movie soundtrack 'Maverick'; Clint Black was offered a bit part in the star-studded comedy which starred Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster and James Garner.
The track 'Tuckered Out' also reached No.74 based on unsolicited airplay.
Clint Black's fifth album, 'One Emotion' (RCA Records, 1994), was released on Tuesday 4 October 1994.
'One Emotion' (RCA Records, 1994) reached No.8 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart and five singles were released from it; 'Untanglin' My Mind' (written by Clint Black with country music legend Merle Haggard) (No.4, 1994), 'Wherever You Go' (No.3, 1995), 'Summer's Coming' (No.1, 1995), 'One Emotion' (No.2, 1995) and 'Life Gets Away' (No.4, 1995).
'One Emotion' and 'Life Gets Away' were also No.1 country hits in Canada in 1995.
Clint Black's first album of Christmas material, 'Looking For Christmas' (RCA Records, 1995), was released on Tuesday 17 October 1995 and featured the song 'Til Santa's Gone (I Just Can't Wait)'. This song charted on several occasions on the Billboard Hot Country Songs Chart, reaching as high as No.34 (in 2000) based on Christmas airplay.
'Looking For Christmas' (RCA Records, 1995), which reached No.25 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart, also featured 'The Kid' (No.67, 1999), which had been co-written by Clint Black, Hayden Nicholas and country music legend Merle Haggard.
On Tuesday 14 September 2004, Clint Black's 'Looking For Christmas' (RCA Records, 1995) was reissued as 'Christmas With You' (Equity Music Group, 2004), with two newly recorded tracks, 'Christmas With You' (No.54, 2005) and 'Santa's Holiday Song'.
In 1996, Clint Black became the fourth country music artist to earn a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
It was also in 1996 that Clint Black saw the release, on Tuesday 24 September 1996, of his first 'greatest hits' collection.
Clint Black's 'Greatest Hits' (RCA Records, 1996) reached No.2 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart and included a dozen hit songs from Clint's first five albums. The compilation also included four new tracks, the hit singles 'Like The Rain' (No.1, 1996) and 'Half Way Up' (No.6, 1996), as well as 'Cadillac Jack Favour' and a live cover of The Eagles' 'Desperado'. Clint Black had originally covered this song in 1993 for the album 'Common Thread: The Songs Of The Eagles' (Giant Records, 1993).
Clint Black's sixth album, 'Nothin' But The Taillights' (RCA Records, 1997), was released on Tuesday 29 July 1997; the album reached No.4 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart and six singles were released from it.
'Still Holding On', which was co-written by Matraca Berg, Clint Black and Marty Stuart, was a duet with Martina McBride (No.11, 1997) and was also included on Martina McBride's 'Evolution' (RCA Records, 1997).
Other hit singles included on 'Nothin' But The Taillights' (RCA Records, 1997) were 'Something That We Do', which was co-written by Clint Black and Skip Ewing (No.2, 1997), 'Nothin' But The Taillights', which was co-written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner (No.1, 1998), 'The Shoes You're Wearing' (No.1, 1998), 'Loosen Up My Strings' (No.12, 1998) and 'You Don't Need Me Now' (No.29, 1999).
'Nothin' But The Taillights' (RCA Records, 1997) also included the track 'You Know It All', which was co-written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner.
In 1998, Vince Gill recorded Clint Black's 'I'll Take Texas' (co-written with Hayden Nicholas) and included the track on his highly acclaimed 'The Key' (MCA Records, 1998), which was released on Tuesday 11 August 1998.
In 1999, Clint Black saw the release of his seventh album, 'D'lectrified' (RCA Records, 1999), on Tuesday 28 September 1999, an album which relied completely on acoustic instruments.
'D'lectrified' (RCA Records, 1999) reached No.7 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart and three singles were released from it; 'When I Said I Do', a duet with Lisa Hartman Black, (No.1, 1999), 'Been There', a duet co-written with Steve Wariner (No.5, 2000) and 'Love She Can't Live Without', co-written with Skip Ewing (No.30, 2000).
'D'lectrified' (RCA Records, 1999) also included 'Where Your Love Won't Go', a track co-written with Steve Wariner.
Clint Black and Lisa Hartman Black welcomed their only child, Lily Pearl Black, in May 2001. Clint Black took a three-year break from the country music industry so that he could stay home with his daughter.
Clint Black's second compilation album, 'Greatest Hits II' (RCA Records, 2001), was released on Tuesday 30 October 2001 and was his last release for RCA Records.
Like his first Greatest Hits volume, 'Greatest Hits' (RCA Records, 1996), it compiled a dozen hit songs from Clint's previous albums and added four new recordings, the romantic duet 'Easy For Me To Say' (Clint's second duet with his wife Lisa Hartman Black), 'Little Pearl And Lily's lullaby' (a song for their then-newborn daughter), the country-rocker 'Money Or Love' and a newly recorded 'Blues version' of 'Put Yourself In My Shoes'.
Clint Black's 'Greatest Hits II' (RCA Records, 2001) reached No.8 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart and two singles were released from it; 'Easy For Me To Say', a duet with Lisa Hartman Black, (No.27, 2001) and 'Money Or Love' (No.50, 2002).
During his sabbatical, Clint Black spent time reassessing his career. After deciding he was unwilling to work within the current recording industry system, Clint Black formed his own record label, Equity Music Group. Clint admitted that it was difficult to leave RCA Records; in his fourteen years with the label, he had sold over twelve million records.
The new label, Equity Music Group, operated under very different rules than those Clint Black had begun his own career under. Artists were guaranteed ownership of their songs and were granted an equity stake in the label.
The first release from the new label was Clint Black's eighth album; 'Spend My Time' (Equity Music Group, 2004) was released on Tuesday 2 March 2004. The Houston Chronicle called it 'arguably the most adventurous of his career'.
'Spend My Time' (Equity Music Group, 2004) reached No.3 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart; three tracks were released from the album as singles, 'Spend My Time' (No.16, 2003), 'The Boogie Man' (No.51, 2004) and 'My Imagination' (No.42, 2004).
'Spend My Time' (Equity Music Group, 2004) also included the track 'A Lover's Clown', which Clint had co-written with Steve Wariner.
Clint Black's ninth album, 'Drinkin' Songs And Other Logic' (Equity Music Group, 2005), was released on Tuesday 4 October 2005; the title track was co-written by Clint Black, Hayden Nicholas and Steve Wariner.
Clint Black's 'Drinkin' Songs And Other Logic' (Equity Music Group, 2005) reached No.36 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart; four tracks were released as singles, 'Rainbow In The Rain' (No.44, 2005), 'Code Of The West' (2005), 'Drinkin' Songs And Other Logic' (No.54, 2006) and 'Heartaches' (2006).
Clint Black's tenth album, 'The Love Songs' (Equity Music Group, 2007), was released on Tuesday 30 January 2007.
'The Love Songs' (Equity Music Group, 2007) consisted of newly recorded versions of many of Clint's love songs, along with a cover version of Jim Croce's 'I'll Have To Say I Love You In A Song'.
'The Love Songs' (Equity Music Group, 2007) reached No.37 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart; the album cover was designed by Peter Max and depicted Clint Black with his wife Lisa Hartman Black.
It was also in 2007 that Clint Black released the single 'The Strong One', the first original song he had recorded that he did not write.
The song was included on his first digital EP, which was released on Tuesday 11 March 2008. Titled 'The Long Cool EP', the collection featured Clint’s single, 'Long Cool Woman', 'The Strong One' and a duet with his wife Lisa titled 'You Still Get To Me'.
Due to economic difficulties, Clint Black's Equity Music Group closed its doors in December 2008.