Named after his father, Troyal Garth Brooks was born on February 7, 1962 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Coincidently, on that same day in Liverpool, England, a band that had just started was playing in the Cavern Club a few months before they would forever be known as The Beatles. Garth’s parents would host talents night every week, at which he was required to participate. This is where he learned to sing and play both the guitar and banjo. However, his main focus as a child was athletics. He played football, baseball and also ran track and field. He was awarded a track scholarship to Oklahoma State University in Stillwater. Garth would compete in the javelin and then graduated in 1984 with a degree in advertising.

1984 was when he started his professional music career, mostly performing in the Tumbleweed in Stillwater, Oklahoma. Exposed to a wide range of music, Garth admits he listened to rock and was influenced by Dan Fogelberg, James Taylor, and Townes Van Zandt. However after listening to “Unwound”, the debut song by George Strait, Garth decided he wanted to play country music. Garth Brooks easily became the most famous country music artist to ever live, becoming a member of the Grand Ole Opry only a year and a half after his first album’s debut. He fused rock into country, and gained an immense following for it. He has the most gross album sales, and sold primarily all of his albums as CDs, as he was popular before iTunes became the top choice site to attain music. Garth is the best selling artist by way of albums since 1991 and the second best selling artist by way of singles, he has sold 68,561,000 albums, a number that is still growing today. He has six albums that have risen to diamond status, which are Garth Brooks (10 times platinum), No Fences (17 times platinum), Ropin’ the Wind (14 times platinum), The Hits (10 times platinum), Sevens (10 times platinum) and Double Live (21 times platinum). He is also the recipient of over 30 prestigious awards for his musical career. He retired from music in 2001, but has made a comeback in 2009, playing at the Encore Hotel on the Vegas Strip. To learn more about Garth Brooks, click here.

The songs that I identify most with are Garth’s “We Shall Be Free”, “Much Too Young (To Feel This Damn Old)”, “Two Pina Coladas”, and “Longneck Bottle”.

“We Shall Be Free” — This song is about freedom, and the way that Garth hopes the world will be one day. I feel that this song sings true along the same lines as Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech. Garth talks about a free place where there is absolute peace and where “we all walk hand in hand”. This is quite impossible honestly, however it is something that I feel we should constantly strive to and is also something I want to strive to as I move on in life. To view this music video, click here.

“Much Too Young (To Feel This Damn Old)” — The gist of this story is told by the name of the song itself. He sings about the “highway” that he is on, the highway of life, and that fact that it is getting longer, as if to allude to the fact that life seems like it is getting longer and tougher. He constantly stated that “I’m much too young to feel this damn old”. I don’t feel like this yet, but I know that most people go through it, and therefore I know that it is a part of life. To view the music video for this song, click here.

“Two Pina Coladas” and “Longneck Bottle” — These two songs talk about when Garth has had went through bad times in his life, and he likes to get away with a Pine Colada or a longneck bottle. I do not condone drinking simply because I am going through something bad or I am having a bad day, however, I am a fan of letting loose every once in a while. These songs’ music videos can be found below.

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About John

I am a senior at Seton Hall University, majoring in Public Relations.

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