After floating the river in New Braunfels, Texas, my extended family and I had to fill our five-car caravan gas tanks before we got on the road back to my grandfather’s ranch outside of College Station. We stopped non other place than the Texas mother ship of gas stations, Buc-ee’s.
Buc-ee’s, is not only a gas station, but also a convenience store. I like to describe it as the Costco or Sam’s Club version of convenience store. It has all the features of typical convenience store. However, what makes Buc-ee’s stand out among the rest of convenience stores, is it’s deliciously jerky and other specialty snacks, large supply of furniture, college gear for every University in the state of Texas, and country home décor.
With about 25 family members, and their general obsession with Buc-ee’s we certainly spent our time looking around. I was looking around with my mother and three cousins. (Keep in mind they were ALL Texas Natives). I read aloud a country décor sign that read,
“Unless you’re God or George Strait, take your boots off.”
I said, “George Strait, who?”
After hearing those words out of my mouth, the expression on these Texans was full of disgust, disbelief, and absolute shock.
During this time I was recovering from a severe concussion. My brain was very out of it. Regardless of my current physical health circumstance at the time, my extended family certainly still does not let me forget I did not know who King of country music was, and were he came from….Texas.
Strait, originally from Poteert, Texas, showed up on the country music scene in 1981, and still sings today. Strait became the definition of traditional and “real country music”. Strait holds the record for singles that hit number one, total of 57 to inclusive of all chart, and has 33 platinum or multi-platinum albums. While today’s country combines with pop, the Country Music Hall of Fame describes Strait’s music as drawing “from both the western swing and the honky-tonk traditions of his native Texas.”
Thus, I learned very quickly one could not separate the name, “George Strait” and the place, “Texas,” so here’s five songs dedicated to the Lone Star State sung by Strait.
5) “Amarillo By Morning”- (1982) Strait’s cover of Terry Stafford’s original song 1973, hit the charts at fourth, and was featured on the platinum record, “Strait from the Heart.” Accompanied by some strings, Strait sings about Amarillo, Texas, a city in Texas that is not exactly a top destination spot. However, that is something that Strait is known for, singing about cities and places in Texas that may not be on one’s radar.
4) “Somewhere Down in Texas” (2005) Wanna know where Strait is now? Texas of course! This song does not only speak about his experiences as a country music star, but reminds his fans where he came from, and where he’s going back. One can get a little emotional after listening to this song, and thinking about Strait’s career. The song was featured on the platinum record, “Somewhere Down In Texas.”
3) “Does Fort Worth Ever Cross Your Mind?” (1984) Strait sings this song to a lover, According to the lyrics, she went to none other than…. Dallas. The song was featured on the platinum record with the same name, and earned “Album of the Year,” from the Country Music Association and Academy of Country Music.
2) “All My Ex’s Live in Texas” (1986)- We learn the REAL reason why Strait left Texas for Tennessee. (JUST KIDDING!) This song shows not only Strait’s playful humor, but it’s easy to sing along. Released on the “Ocean Front Property” double platinum record, “All My Ex’s Live in Texas” hit number one on the Billboard country charts.
1) “Texas” (2005) This song was not released as a single, but was also featured on “Somewhere Down in Texas.” Strait sings about some of favorite places, people, and things in the Lone Star State, such as Fort Worth, Texas, Austin, Willie Nelson, the Yellow Rose, the Dallas Cowboys, and of course the symbol of the Lone Star itself. Strait sings this personal narrative with gratitude for his home roots Strait was inducted to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2006, and all his listeners surely know he would not became the King of Country, “If it wasn’t for Texas.”