Monday, November 4, 2013
– Buck Owens' autobiography, "Buck 'Em!," comes out Tuesday, seven years after his death.
In the latter half of the 1990s, Owens began working on the book. Over several years, he spoke into a cassette tape recorder, totaling nearly 100 hours of memories and recording the story of his life. He recalled everything from his early days wearing hand-me-down clothes in Texas to his glory years as the biggest country star of the 1960s.
Grammy-nominated producer and author Randy Poe assembled all of Owens' stories and transcribed them so that they are in Owens' own words. In the preface of the book, Dwight Yoakam says, "The stream of stories throughout this book captures, with an uncanny accuracy, the way I heard Buck speak whenever he told a story to someone."
Born in Texas and raised in Arizona, Owens eventually found his way to Bakersfield, Cal., where he created his own brand of country music some 2,000 miles away from Music City. Inspiring everyone from ordinary music fans to The Beatles, he changed the way country records were mixed, produced, written and perceived. In 1969, he began hosting the country comedy TV show "Hee Haw," becoming a household name.
Poe is the president of Leiber & Stoller Music Publishing in Los Angeles. He is a Grammy-nominated record producer and an award-winning author whose books include the bestseller "Skydog: The Duane Allman Story" and "Stalking the Red Headed Stranger."
"Buck 'Em!: The Autobiography of Buck Owens and Buck 'Em!: The Music of Buck Owens (1955-1967)," a two-CD set being released as a companion to the book from Omnivore Recordings on Nov. 5.