Yoakam set to rock Ponoka Stampede

Grammy award winner Dwight Yoakam will play the grandstand at the 75th Ponoka Stampede on June 30.

CHARLES TWEED/Ponoka News

He’s sold more than 25 million albums worldwide, acted in movies with Jodie Foster and Nicholas Cage, and been dubbed “A renaissance man,” by Time Magazine but even Dwight Yoakam knows you haven’t done anything until you play the grandstand at the Ponoka Stampede.

The singer-songwriter will bring his act to Ponoka on June 30, performing some of his more than 30 singles that have charted over the past two decades.

Born in small town Kentucky, Yoakam first descended on Nashville in the mid-1980s. However, Nashville was interested in the urban cowboy sound during this time and Yoakam’s twang and rockabilly style didn’t fit the mold. It wasn’t until Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc.. was released in 1986 that Yoakam found mainstream success. “Honkey Tonk Man” and “Guitars, Cadillacs” launched Yoakam onto the radar of every country music lover. His second album, Hillbilly Deluxe was as big a hit but it wasn’t until his third album, Buenas Noches from a Lonely Room that Yoakam found his first No. 1 single, a duet with his musical idol, Buck Owens, called the “Streets of Bakersfield.”

Since then he has gone on to record eight solo albums and several compilation and cover recordings. He won the Grammy Award for Best Male Country Vocal Performance in 1993 for the song “Ain’t That Lonely Yet.”

With a resume that is as impressive as anyone’s in the business, Yoakam is sure to provide some foot pounding, heart-pumping country music with the odd two-stepping ditty mixed in. His set list is so long and impressive that anyone planning on going should spend an hour revisiting some of his hits on YouTube or run the risk of saying, ‘Wow, I didn’t know this was a Dwight Yoakam song,” to a friend while you sing along seemingly knowing every word.

Yoakam has played the role of divorcee in Wedding Crashers, he was a doctor in Crank but on June 30 at the Ponoka Stampede he’ll be in his most familiar role to date — an unassuming, small town country boy that’s found a way to combine lyric and music in a way that is sure to have Ponoka rocking.

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