Keith Urban is a country music player, songwriter and guitarist. He has a successful commercial career in America and Australia. He is the first Kiwi to win the CMA Male vocalist of the Year in 2004.
Keith Lionel Urban was born on 26th of October 1967 in Whangarei, New Zealand. His parents moved to Caboolture, Queensland, Australia. When Keith was six-year-old, he learned to play the guitar. He showed a natural flair for the instrument and went on to win national talent shows from the age of 8. By the age of 12, he was booking shows for his band in local clubs. When he was 15, he quit school and hit the road.
His father influenced Keith to develop keen interest in American culture and country music. In 1990, he signed his first album with EMI in Australia. It turned out to be a chart buster with 4 singles hitting the number one spot in the country hits in Australia. He moved to Nashville, Tennessee and worked as a guitarist for Brooks & Dunn. He was seen backing Alan Jackson in his music video ‘Mercury Blues’. Later, he formed ‘The Ranch’, a three-piece group and released one album in 1997. He disbanded the group in 1998 to pursue a solo career.
Keith is regarded as a modern-day guitar virtuoso. He performed as a session musician for albums like Garth Brooks’ ‘Double Live’ and Dixie Chicks’ ‘Fly’.
Keith became a cocaine and heroin addict during his stay at Nashville. He became determined to give up the habit and sought treatment for de-addiction. After his recovery, he released his self-titled album in America. It earned him three top 5 hits and secured him the Top New Male Vocalist Award at the 2001 Academy of County Music Awards and also the 2001 Country Music Association’s Horizon Award.
In 2002, he released the album ‘Golden Road’. The song ‘Somebody Like You’ accelerated his career path to success. In 2004, ‘Be Here’ sold over 4 million copies. Keith turned into a superstar, winning Grammy Nominations and had paparazzi swarming all over him.
Keith was in the limelight in the following year with the much publicized engagement followed by a marriage with fellow Australian Academy Award Winner Nicole Kidman. He continued to be under the media glare when he voluntarily enrolled himself to a rehabilitation center in 2007, for alcohol abuse. He made a comeback with his new album ‘Love, Pain & the Whole Crazy Thing’ which was released, as scheduled in November. This was his first album which failed to produce single hits. ‘Love, Pain & the Whole Crazy Thing’, nevertheless became double platinum in America. On 7th of July, 2008, Kidman gave birth to their first child, a daughter, Sunday Rose Kidman Urban, in Nashville, Tennessee. Keith stated on his website, “Earlier this morning Nic gave birth to our beautiful baby girl, Sunday Rose Kidman Urban. We want to thank everybody that has kept us in their thoughts and prayers. We feel very blessed and grateful that we can share this joy with all of you today.”
In the same year, Keith announced his 5th Studio Album ‘Sweet Thing’. This song turned out to be the #1 song of this album. ‘Defying Gravity’ was released on 31st March, which was ranked #1 on the Billboard 200. His past two albums debuted at #3, making this, his first #1 CD. Keith Urban, with his distinct style of music, has carved a niche in the field of music. The strings of Keith’s guitar will continue to mesmerize the audience.