Clint Black killin’ time at Ponoka Stampede

Country hit-maker Clint Black will perform Killin’ Time and other signature tunes at the Ponoka Stampede.

Country hit-maker Clint Black will perform Killin’ Time and other signature tunes at the Ponoka Stampede.

The Texas-raised singer will entertain the pro-rodeo crowd on Monday, June 27.

Black’s 1989 debut album produced five straight No. 1 singles on U.S. Billboard charts. Throughout the 1990s and early 200os, Black continued to rack up hits, including A Better Man, When I Said I Do, A Bad Goodbye, Put Yourself in My Shoes, Nobody’s Home, Like the Rain, and A Good Run of Bad Luck.

The singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist has made nine studio albums and had more than 30 singles on the charts — 22 of them that hit the top spot.

Inspired by George Jones, Merle Haggard, Reba McEntire and George Strait, Black started out singing with his brothers at family backyard barbecues when he was a teenager in Katy, Texas. He’d taught himself to play the harmonica at age 13 and was writing his first songs a year later.

Bent on being a performer, he quit high school to play in a band with his brothers. He soon went solo, supporting himself with work in construction. His songwriting really took off after he met fellow guitarist Hayden Nicholas in 1987 and the two began a writing partnership that lasted decades.

Black’s demo of Nobody’s Home brought him to the attention of RCA Records a couple years later. Black’s first album, Killin’ Time in 1989, broke the mold by using musicians in his road band instead of session players. It became a massive hit, causing Black to finally realize he’d turned the corner in his career. He stated, “I felt like no matter what happened from that point on, I would always be remembered …”

In 1996, the platinum-selling singer became just the fourth country music artist to earn a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

While taking a three-year sabbatical from his music career after his daughter was born with wife Lisa Hartman, he decided to form his own label, Equity Music Group. Black admitted it was difficult to leave RCA — in 14 years with the label, he’d sold more than 12 million records — but the music industry was changing, and he wanted artists to be able to own their own songs.

“To me, a song is more than something to sing. It’s something to learn from,” he once said. “When I write a line … I’m looking at it from the perspective of, if I was driving down the road listening to it, what am I gonna get out of it?”

Black, who’s also acted in movies and TV shows, has won more than a dozen U.S. country music awards.

Tickets to his 6:30 p.m. show are $40 from Ticketmaster. For more information, please visit ponokastampede.com.

lmichelin@bprda.wpengine.com

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