George Strait The Cowboy Rides Away in Style

GeorgeStraight Cover June 13 2014

Submitted by Don Graham

George Strait, the King of the cowboys in country music, has completed the final concert of his final tour in style. Strait drew a record crowd of 105,000 fans at Arlington’s AT&T Stadium. The number exceeded the stadium's official capacity by 5,000 and broke the previous record of 87,500 set by The Rolling Stones at The Louisiana Superdome in 1981.

"I can't tell you how excited I am to be here tonight. It's just been on my mind since we started this tour two years ago, and finally it's here tonight," Strait said. "We broke a record for the most people, ever. Really? Why wouldn't we, huh?"  After the show Strait said “I knew it would be kind of emotional but I was still a little surprised to feel it that strongly, The first three or four shows in 2013 were the toughest, but every night it was in the back of my mind to take it all in, because I probably wouldn’t ever come back there again. It made me want to put on the best show we’ve ever done there. I hope we did that. I feel like we did.”

This final show brought to an end to nearly 40 years on the road for Strait which he began in 1975 with the Ace in the Hole Band. The fans were treated to 40 songs and the king went out in style, inviting several of country music’s biggest stars, including Vince Gill, Sheryl Crow, Kenny Chesney, Miranda Lambert, Jason Aldean  and Eric Church.

Vince Gill made his way to the stage to join Strait for his second and third songs, ‘Lovebug’ and ‘Does Fort Worth Ever Cross Your Mind’. "I wouldn't have missed it, I've known this man for 33 years," said Gill.

Even with a star-studded lineup, the focus of the concert was most definitely   on the 62-year-old singer, whose incredible career in country music has lasted decades longer than the norm.. He's had more songs on top of the country music charts than any other musician.  While he's quitting the road and touring he will no doubt have more chart-topping songs as he has a deal in place with MCA Records to produce five more albums.

George Strait was born in Poteet, Texas  and was  raised in Pearsall, Texas, about 60 miles southwest of San Antonio, His 1981 single "Unwound" launched his career and his first No. 1 hit came the following year with "Fool Hearted Memory". He has now had 44 songs on the country music charts and has more gold and platinum albums than any other recording act except The Beatles and Elvis Presley.

George Strait Sets a RecordGeorge Strait Sets a RecordAnd he's been just as successful touring. His 584 shows since 1990 have grossed more than $405 million. He has sold more than 68.5 million copies of his 46 records.

Strait will no longer tour regularly, but he hasn’t ruled out playing select dates each year. Previously he’d even suggested that he’d entertain an offer for a Las Vegas residency. While he's quitting the road and touring he will no doubt have more chart-topping songs as he has a deal in place with MCA Records to produce five more albums.

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