Blake Tollison Shelton (born June 18, 1976) is an American country music singer and television personality. In 2001, he made his debut with the single "Austin". The lead-off single from his self-titled debut album, "Austin" spent five weeks at number one on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. The gold-certified debut album also produced two more Top 20 hits ("All Over Me" and "Ol' Red"). Although the album was released on Giant Records Nashville, he was transferred to Warner Bros. Records Nashville after Giant closed in late 2001.
His second and third albums, 2003's The Dreamer and 2004's Blake Shelton's Barn & Grill, were each certified gold as well. His fourth album, Pure BS (2007), was re-issued in 2008 with a cover of Michael Bublé's pop hit "Home" as one of the bonus tracks. His fifth album, Startin' Fires was released in November 2008. It was followed by the extended plays Hillbilly Bone and All About Tonight in 2010, and the albums Red River Blue in 2011. Based on a True Story... in 2013, and Bringing Back the Sunshine in 2014. Overall, Blake Shelton has charted 24 country singles, including 15 number ones. The 11th No. 1 ("Doin' What She Likes") broke "the record for the most consecutive No. 1 singles in the Country Airplay chart's 24-year history". He is a five-time Grammy Award nominee.
Shelton is also known for his role as a judge on the televised singing competitions Nashville Star, Clash of the Choirs, and The Voice. He has been on The Voice since its inception, and four out of the eight seasons (2–4, 7) his teams have won. From 2011 to 2015, Shelton was married to fellow country singer Miranda Lambert.
Shelton was born in Ada, Oklahoma, the son of Dorothy, a beauty salon owner, and Richard Shelton, a used car salesman. Shelton began singing at an early age and by age 12, he was taught how to play the guitar by his uncle. By age 15, he had written his first song. By age 16, he had received a Denbo Diamond Award in his home state. On November 13, 1990, his older brother Richie Shelton (who was 24 at the time) was killed in an automobile accident. After graduating from High School at seventeen, he moved to Nashville, Tennessee to pursue a singing career. There he got a job at a music publishing company and, in 1997, he was aided by Bobby Braddock to obtain a production contract with Sony Music.
Some years later in Nashville, he signed to Giant Records in 2001. In 2001, he was slated to release a song entitled "I Wanna Talk About Me" as a single. Staff at the label considered the song unsuitable for a lead-off single, however, and the song was eventually recorded by Toby Keith, whose version was a number 1 single.
Instead, Giant released "Austin" as Shelton's debut single. Shortly after its release, Giant Records was closed, and Shelton was transferred to parent company Warner Bros. Records. "Austin" went on to spend five weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks (now Hot Country Songs) charts. Warner released his self-titled debut album, which was produced by songwriter Bobby Braddock. It also produced the top 20 hits "All Over Me", which Shelton co-wrote with Earl Thomas Conley and Mike Pyle, and "Ol' Red". Although Shelton's rendition of "Ol' Red" was not a major radio hit, he considers it his signature song, and it has become popular in concert. Blake Shelton received a gold certification from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for shipments of 500,000 copies.
Blake Shelton received a positive review from Maria Konicki Dinoia of Allmusic, who called "Austin" "tremendously imaginative" and praised Shelton for including songs written by Braddock and Conley. Country Standard Time was less favorable, with Scott Homewood saying that it "album just smacks of being assembled with the intent on capturing the burgeoning alternative country market".
Shelton's second album, The Dreamer, was first released on February 4, 2003, on Warner Bros. Records. Its lead-off single, "The Baby", reached No. 1 on the country charts, holding that position for three weeks. Although the second and third singles ("Heavy Liftin'" and "Playboys of the Southwestern World", respectively) only reached No.32 and No. 24, The Dreamer earned gold certification as well. He, along with Andy Griggs and Montgomery Gentry, sang guest vocals on Tracy Byrd's mid-2003 single "The Truth About Men". Blake Shelton's Barn & Grill was the title of Shelton's third studio album, released in 2004. Its lead-off single, the Harley Allen co-write "When Somebody Knows You That Well", peaked at No.37 on the country charts, while the follow-up "Some Beach" became his third No.1 hit, holding that position for four weeks. It was followed by a cover of Conway Twitty's 1988 single "Goodbye Time". Both this cover and its followup, "Nobody but Me", reached Top Ten for Shelton as well. As with his first two albums, Blake Shelton's Barn & Grill was certified gold. Accompanying the album's release was a video collection entitled Blake Shelton's Barn & Grill: A Video Collection.
On December 18, 2005, several of Shelton's songs, including "Nobody but Me", appeared on the TV movie The Christmas Blessing, starring Neil Patrick Harris, Rebecca Gayheart, Angus T. Jones, and Rob Lowe. Shelton had a small role at the end of the movie, playing himself at a benefit concert, singing "Nobody but Me".
Shelton issued his fourth studio album, Pure BS, in early 2007. Unlike with his first three albums, which were produced entirely by Bobby Braddock, Shelton worked with Braddock, Brent Rowan, and Paul Worley as producers for this album. Its first two singles—"Don't Make Me" and "The More I Drink"—were both Top 20 hits on the country charts, respectively reaching No.12 and No. 19. Also in late 2007, Shelton made appearances on television shows: first as a judge on the talent competition Nashville Star, and later on Clash of the Choirs.
Pure BS was re-released in 2008 with three bonus tracks, including a cover of Michael Bublé's hit single "Home". This cover, released in early 2008 as the album's third single, became his fourth No.1 hit in July.
"Home" was followed in August 2008 by the single "She Wouldn't Be Gone", his 14th chart entry and his fifth No. 1 hit. It was the first time in his career that he had two consecutive number ones. "She Wouldn't Be Gone" is the lead-off to Shelton's fifth studio album, Startin' Fires, which has also produced the single "I'll Just Hold On." This album also includes "Bare Skin Rug," a duet with Lambert. It was produced by Scott Hendricks, except for one track which was produced by Brent Rowan, and another ("I Don't Care", which carried over from Pure BS) was produced by Braddock. After "I'll Just Hold On" fell off the chart in October 2009, Blake Shelton released a duet with Trace Adkins titled "Hillbilly Bone". It was the lead-off single on Shelton's EP, Hillbilly Bone, released on March 2, 2010 through Reprise Records Nashville. After "Hillbilly Bone" reached No. 1 in February, came the August release of "All About Tonight", the lead-off single to his EP of the same name. In September, he released the second single from All About Tonight, "Who Are You When I'm Not Looking", his 18th single release. He released his first greatest hits album, Loaded: The Best of Blake Shelton in November 2010.
Shelton was invited to join the Grand Ole Opry during the September 28, 2010 "Country Comes Home" concert celebrating reopening of the Grand Ole Opry House after the Cumberland River flooded the Opry House in May 2010. The formal invitation was extended on his Twitter account and was announced by Opry star Trace Adkins. He was formally inducted by Adkins at the Saturday, October 23, 2010 Opry performance. Shelton recorded the title track for the remake of Footloose released on October 14, 2011. Shelton appeared on the 44th Annual Country Music Awards on November 10, 2010 where he performed "All About Tonight" and won Male Vocalist of the Year.
In 2011, Shelton started working as a judge/coach to singers on the NBC reality television series The Voice.
Blake Shelton released the album Red River Blue on July 12, 2011, led by the single, "Honey Bee". The song received 138,000 downloads in its first week and was certified gold in its seventh week, setting a record for the fastest gold certification by a male country singer. On June 13, 2011, in its tenth chart week, "Honey Bee" went to No. 1 on the Hot Country Songs chart, becoming his ninth No. 1 and his fastest-climbing. The album was expected to debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with around 110,000 copies sold. "God Gave Me You", a cover of a Dave Barnes song, was the album's second single; it also reached No. 1. "Drink on It", the fifth song on the album, hit No. 1 in April 2012, giving him his 11th No. 1 song. On April 30, 2012, Blake performed "Over" on the Semi-finals of the second season of The Voice. "Over" became Shelton's seventh consecutive No. 1. and his 12th No. 1 hit to date.
Blake Shelton is a coach on the NBC show The Voice. In season 1, his finalist Dia Frampton came in second. Frampton recorded a track with Shelton titled "I Will" on her album Red, released December 6, 2011. Shelton returned for a second season of the show with his finalist Jermaine Paul as the champion. In season three of The Voice, Shelton's team member, Cassadee Pope, was declared the winner with other Team Blake contestant Terry McDermott finishing as runner-up.
Blake Shelton took the stage with Miranda Lambert at Super Bowl XLVI in February 2012 to open the event by singing a duet version of "America the Beautiful". It marked their first TV performance since their headlining nuptials in May 2011.
In October 2012, Shelton released his first Christmas album, Cheers, It's Christmas, which peaked at no. 1 and no. 2 respectively on the Top Holiday Albums and Top Country Albums charts.
Blake Shelton appears on fellow "Voice" coach Christina Aguilera's album Lotus on the song "Just a Fool".
Shortly after midnight on New Year's Day 2013, Shelton premiered a new single entitled "Sure Be Cool If You Did", which was released to iTunes on January 8 and reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs and Country Airplay chart in 2013. His eighth studio album, Based on a True Story..., was released on March 26, 2013 and debuted at No. 1 on the country chart and No. 3 on the all-genre chart by selling a career best nearly 200,000 copies. The album's second single, "Boys 'Round Here" released to country radio in 2013 and also reached No. 1 on the Country Airplay chart. The album's third single, "Mine Would Be You", was released to country radio on July 22, 2013 and reached No. 1 on the Country Airplay chart in November 2013. "Mine Would Be You" became Shelton's tenth consecutive No. 1 single, tying him with the record set by Brad Paisley in 2009. With the release of the album's fourth single, "Doin' What She Likes", Shelton achieved his eleventh consecutive No. 1 single, thus breaking the tie.
Blake Shelton received the Gene Weed Special Achievement Award for his role as a coach on The Voice at the 48th Academy of Country Music Awards in 2013.
Shelton supported Based on a True Story... on his Ten Times Crazier Tour which began on July 19, 2013 and ended on October 5, 2013. Shelton has continued the tour into 2014.
On season four of The Voice, he became the winning coach for the third consecutive time with team members Danielle Bradbery as the winner and The Swon Brothers in third place.
In August 2014, Shelton announced that his ninth studio album, Bringing Back the Sunshine, would be released on September 30, 2014. The album contains the singles "Neon Light", "Lonely Tonight" (a duet with fellow country singer Ashley Monroe), "Sangria" and "Gonna". The first three singles have all reached #1 on the Country Airplay chart.
In season seven of The Voice, Craig Wayne Boyd was crowned the winner, scoring Shelton his fourth victory.
Shelton's second greatest hits album, Reloaded: 20 #1 Hits will be released on October 23, 2015.
Shelton married long time girlfriend Kaynette Gern on November 17, 2003. They divorced in 2006.
In 2005, Shelton met fellow country singer Miranda Lambert at the CMT's 100 Greatest Duets Concert. Lambert also sang background vocals on his cover of Michael Bublé's song, "Home", which became a No. 1 single on the Hot Country Songs chart. On May 9, 2010, after dating for four years, Shelton proposed to Miranda, after seeking (and receiving) her father's blessing. Shelton and Lambert were married on May 14, 2011, in Boerne, Texas.
On January 17, 2012, Shelton's father, Dick, 71, died in Oklahoma, following a period of declining health. Shelton's brother, Richie, died in 1990 when Blake was 14 years old. Blake and Lambert wrote about Richie in Lambert's song, "Over You". The song was named CMA Song of the Year for 2012. It was also named Single Record and Song of the Year at the 2013 Academy of Country Music awards.
In July 2015 Shelton and Lambert filed for divorce. The couple released a statement, "This is not the future we envisioned and it is with heavy heart that we move forward separately. We are real people, with real lives, with real family, friends and colleagues. Therefore, we kindly ask for privacy and compassion concerning this very personal matter." Their divorce, according to reports, was finalized later that same day. He soon started dating his colleague from The Voice, Gwen Stefani.
Blake Shelton (2001)
The Dreamer (2003)
Blake Shelton's Barn & Grill (2004)
Pure BS (2007)
Startin' Fires (2008)
Red River Blue (2011)
Cheers, It's Christmas (2012)
Based on a True Story... (2013)
Bringing Back the Sunshine (2014)
If I'm Honest (2016)
Sources: Last.fm, Wikipedia
Blake Shelton in the news
|Songs by Blake Shelton|