Garth Brooks Biography

Garth Brooks In Concert - Philadelphia, PA
Gilbert Carrasquillo / Getty Images

Name: Troyal Garth Brooks

Birthday: February 7, 1962

Hometown: Tulsa, Oklahoma

Country Style: Contemporary Country


Garth Brooks is a songwriter, but on his albums, he uses mainly songs written by other people. Some of the songs he had a hand in writing, however, are: "We Shall Be Free," "Much Too Young (To Be This Damn Old)," "If Tomorrow Never Comes," "Not Counting You," "Unanswered Prayers," "The Thunder Rolls" and "The River."

Other big hits of his career from other songwriters include: "Friends in Low Places," "The Dance," "Rodeo," "Shameless," "Callin' Baton Rouge," "Longneck Bottle" and "To Make You Feel My Love."

Musical Influences

George Strait, George Jones, James Taylor, KISS, Don McLean, Queen, Dan Fogelberg, Merle Haggard, Boston, Kansas, Journey, Billy Joel.

Similar Artists

Some other artists with music similar to Garth Brooks

Recommended Albums

  • No Fences
  • Ropin' the Wind


Troyal Garth Brooks was born on February 7, 1962, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He was part of a musical family, and also enjoyed sports. While attending Oklahoma State University, he played music in bars and clubs in the area. He graduated in 1984 with a degree in advertising, and by 1987, he and wife Sandy made the move to Nashville, so Garth could pursue his music career.

Garth recorded a lot of demos, and he also performed in clubs around town. It was at one of his performances that a Capitol executive caught one of his shows, and signed him to the label.

Garth released his self-titled debut in 1989, with the first single "Much Too Young (To Feel This Damn Old," which became his first Top 10 single. The album also produced three more hits, including two No. 1 songs, "If Tomorrow Never Comes" and "The Dance." The fourth single, "Not Counting You," peaked at No. 2.

Garth Breaks Out From the Pack With No Fences

While Garth Brooks was a success, he was often overshadowed by fellow country newcomer Clint Black, who had four straight No. 1 songs from his debut album, Killin' Time. Garth made his move with the release of No Fences in 1990. Preceded by the No. 1 single "Friends in Low Places," No Fences debuted at No. 1 and sold more than 700,000 copies in the first ten days of its release. Three other singles were released: "Unanswered Prayers," "Two of a Kind (Workin' on a Full House)" and "The Thunder Rolls" which all went to No. 1.

Garth's next album, Ropin' the Wind broke still more records, topping both the Billboard Top 200 chart and the Billboard Country Albums chart.

A Garth Brooks Concert Is Not to Be Missed

Garth's record sales were fueled not only by the quality of music, but by his live shows, which were patterned after 70's rock-styled shows, and sold out in minutes. The light show was elaborate, and he would often swing from ropes, climb ladders, and even had a harness hooked up so he could swing out over the audience while he sang.

Further albums followed, starting with The Chase and his first Christmas album, in 1992, In Pieces in 1993, The Hits in 1994, and Fresh Horses in 1995.

Live From Central Park

In August of 1997, Garth Brooks put on a free concert in New York's Central Park. The crowds that showed up for the show numbered close to 1,000,000. It was supposed to be part of the promotion for Garth's next release, but as it got closer to the day of the event, Garth's label was in upheaval, and Garth ultimately held back the album until things were stable again, and the album, Sevens was released in November that year.

There were two releases from Garth in 1998, with the spring release of the Limited Series box set. The set included Garth's first six releases, which were pulled out of print. Two million copies were pressed, and the set was sold for the reasonable price of $19.99. The second release was a live set, entitled Double Live. The 2 CD set sold quite well, selling over 1,000,000 copies in its first week.

Alter Ego or No?

In 1999, Garth confused many fans by releasing an album of pop hits that were from a fictional character which was to be part of an upcoming movie project. The album was called Garth the Life of Chris Gaines. Fans just couldn't understand the concept, and although the music was great, critics panned the album.

Garth also released a second holiday album, Garth Brooks and the Magic of Christmas, which featured big band styled Christmas songs.

After all the years of touring, and the death of his mother in 1999, Garth took a look at his life, and knew that he wasn't giving his daughters the attention they needed, so he decided to retire from touring. He and Sandy had been trying to put their marriage back together, but the two couldn't make it work, so they decided to divorce.

Garth still owed Capitol one more album on his contract, and he released Scarecrow near the end of 2000, saying this was his final album.

Three additional releases have come out since Scarecrow. The Limited Series (not to be confused with the 1998 title of the same name). This set had a total of six CDs in it: Double Live, Sevens Scarecrow, a brand new disc of unreleased music and a DVD with interviews and concert footage. This came out in 2005. The final release was The Lost Sessions, which was part of the 2005 version of The Limited Series as the disc of unreleased music. This disc had 6 additional tracks not on the version from the boxed set.

In 2007, Garth released The Ultimate Hits, which included 2 discs of 30 hits, three new songs and a DVD that featured the music videos for the new songs. The single "More than a Memory" was released to radio and debuted at No. 1 on the charts.