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Twenty-something Dwight Yoakam was literally the new kid in country music when he stepped onto the Austin City Limits stage in October 1988. But even then, as he has ever since, he was doing things his own way. Dwight was born in a small Kentucky town and grew up listening to mountain and bluegrass music, and unlike most of the mainstream country-pop crooners of the eighties, he almost single-handedly revived the rockabilly / honky tonk / hillbilly sound that was one of the cornerstones of country music’s formative years. Early on he discovered the fabled “Bakersfield” sound of the 60’s and adopted it as his own, in the tradition of country legends Merle Haggard and Buck Owens. Buck, in fact, became his hero and friend. When Dwight was playing a fair in Bakersfield, he stopped by Buck’s office and coaxed him into playing a few songs with him onstage that night. The result was a lasting friendship and their historic duet, “Streets Of Bakersfield.” Much like his heroes, Dwight has been true to his roots and breaking new ground for almost 20 years. - Terry Lickona (Producer Austin City Limits)

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