|Ty's Latest Official Biography...
In the ever evolving world of country music, Ty Herndon continues to prove himself as a powerful musical force - as both a singer and a songwriter. Herndon has garnered Number One songs – including "What Mattered Most," "Hands of a Working Man", "Living in a Moment", "Loved Too Much", "It Must Be Love", "A Man Holdin’ On (To a Woman Lettin’ Go)" and "I Want My Goodbye Back", Gold Album certifications, and over Four Million in CD sales – making him one of Country Music’s most consistent radio favorites of the 1990s. Rather than sitting at home reflecting upon his achievements, Ty has recorded a new album that reflects a sound of resurrection, pride, and triumph.
Herndon’s soon to be released, self-produced album, Journey On, includes the powerful vocals that the world has come to expect. From the title ballad, “Journey On”, to the soaring and spiritual vocals on tracks "The Rest of my Life", "Blur the Lines" and "I Cried Out,” it is evident that Herndon is back and stronger than ever in heart, voice, mind and spirit.
Making music comes naturally to Herndon. He was raised in Butler, AL in a musical family. Like so many Country musicians, Ty first performed Gospel Music in church.
At age 17, he auditioned and was hired at OPRYLAND USA as a cast member of “Today’s Country Roads", which was a showcase of many of Country’s then-current hits. During his time at OPRYLAND, representatives of TV’s "Star Search" heard one of Ty’s performances. He then auditioned for the television series, and became a male-vocalist winner. This led to appearances on a number of cable variety shows with country legends, such as Johnny Cash and Porter Wagoner. Herndon later landed a job as the host of “Countryline”, a video series featuring interviews with Reba McEntire, Martina McBride, as well as other music-video stars. By his 21st birthday, he was an accomplished actor in network television specials and major television commercials<,p> Despite these accomplishments, Ty was going through a time of emotions and frustration. Despite his very visible success, he was unable to secure a Nashville record label recording contract. One particular label executive said, "Son, you go back to Alabama, get on your little red tractor and stay there."
Herndon reflects that, "I was getting beat up. I was fed up, angry and bitter. I had no direction. So I went to Texas and started my honky-tonk education. I thought, ‘If you are not gonna get a record deal, at least there you’ll be able to make music’." For the next six years, he earned a reputation as one of the best male vocalists and entertainers in Texas by toiling nightly in local honky-tonks and hotspots.
In 1993 he was named Texas Entertainer of the Year. That honor finally led to interest from Music Row. He recorded his debut album in 1994, and in early 1995 his first single, "What Mattered Most," rocketed to Number One. It won Song of the Year at the annual Music Row Magazine Awards and Ty was named Best New Artist at the 1995 Country Radio Music Awards. The commercial success he has sought for so long had finally arrived.
Ty returned to his music and the songs that came out of this time led to a 1997 American Music Award Nomination and a Contemporary Achievement honor from the Alabama Music Hall of Fame. His What Mattered Most and Living in a Moment albums were both certified Gold Records raising his overall album sales tally to more than four million CDs. His blazing live-performance style made him one of Country Music’s most popular concert attractions.
Herndon still felt a creative pull to express his life experiences, struggles and dreams through his music.
He shares that, “The people who believed in me and my talent, made me even more serious about writing this new album. There was so much I wanted to say to fit where I find myself spiritually and emotionally, and I wanted to sing about that. Three years ago, when I was singing songs that someone else had written, I found that I wasn’t in my strongest voice. Today I can sing these songs now, with a strength and conviction I never knew I had because they are my songs. My throat is clearer than it has ever been before, and that feeling is just awesome.”
"I am so blessed to share this record. I find myself in a very happy and satisfying place in my life. I’ve had an abundance of spiritual experiences making this record and I am very, very proud of it. I can’t wait to share it with the world."
This comeback collection by Ty Herndon is a ringing reaffirmation of his status as one of country musics most powerful vocal interpreters. From the silvery falsetto notes in the CD's title tune to the soaring, fiery and muscular vocals on tracks like Someday Soon, You Still Own Me and We Are, these are performances that electrify the senses.
Love Revival and Mercy Line are tinged with blue-eyed soul. Herndon simmers with conviction on the uptempo If I Could Only Have Her Love Back and Love Revival, while Hide and In the Arms of Someone Who Loves Me showcase his ability to get inside lyrics of substance. The collection concludes with his slow, tremulous, intense rendition of the gospel-infused There Will Be a Better Day.
My greatest ability is my ability to interpret a song, put it on tape and make it believable, says Ty Herndon softly. That's why I love to do this.
I can do that to a crowd. I can make them believe me. I've done it so many times. And I want to do it on a different level this time, a more honest level, a level that I truly believe in.
Ty Herndon isn't boasting. He says all of this with sincere humility. But it is a fact that this man has proved time and again how charismatic a vocalist he is. Hits such as What Mattered Most, Hands of a Working Man, Living in a Moment, Loved Too Much, It Must Be Love, A Man Holdin On (To a Woman Lettin Go)and I Want My Goodbye Back made him one of country music's most consistent radio favorites of the 1990s.
In addition to being a country chart-topper, Ty Herndon has also been a national television star, an ad-jingle vocalist, a model, a talk-show host, an actor and a theme-park entertainer. Right About Now returns him to what he has always done best, singing.
He has been doing that since age six, when he began singing in churches and at talent contests around his hometown of Butler, Alabama. He attended high school in Decatur, Alabama. At age 17, he auditioned and was hired at OPRYLAND USA as a cast member of Today's Country Roads showcasing hits on the top county chart.
Representatives of TV's Star Search, the American Idol of its day, spotted him at the park. He became a male-vocalist winner on the series, which led to singing on a number of cable variety shows, including specials starring such greats as Johnny Cash and Porter Wagoner. Herndon landed a job as the host of Countryline, a home video featuring his interviews with Ronnie Milsap, Earl Thomas Conley and other music-video stars. By the time he turned 21, he had already acted on such programs as I-40 Paradise (TNN) and in the Jerry Reed TV movie Diamonds, Gold and Platinum (TBS).
In 1986-87, Herndon became a cast member of the nationally syndicated television series You Write the Songs. He toured internationally for the USO. He sang song demos for the big publishing companies in Nashville.
Despite these accomplishments, Ty Herndon was a frustrated young man. No one on Music Row would give him a recording contract. One executive even told him. Son, you go back to Alabama, get on your little red tractor and stay there. His father died while Herndon was chasing Nashville stardom. Shady show-business hustlers took the green kid for a ride. As a result, his mother lost her home in Nashville.
I was getting beat up. I was fed up, angry and bitter. I had no direction. So I went to Texas and started my honky-tonk education. I thought,˜If you are not gonna get a record deal, at least there you'll be able to make music and the money to pay his mother back. For the next six years, he learned to become a real vocalist and entertainer by toiling nightly in Dallas nightspots.
In 1993, the same year he was named Texas Entertainer of the Year. That honor led to interest from Music Row at last. He recorded his debut album in 1994, and in early 1995 its first single, What Mattered Most, rocketed to Number One. It won Song of the Year at the annual Music Row magazine awards. He was named Best New Artist at the 1995 Country Radio Music Awards.
In the summer of 1995, the singer's addictions became public. At the same time he achieved #1 success with his first single release What Mattered Most. He went through rehabilitation at an Arizona facility, then resumed his career.
The barrage of hits that ensued, led to a 1997 American Music Award Nomination and a Contemporary Achievement honor from the Alabama Music Hall of Fame. His What Mattered Most and Living in a Moment albums were both Gold Records. During the late 1990s he sold more than four million discs. His blazing live-performance style made him one of country music's finest concert attractions.
After 2002, he vanished from radio charts and concert stages. I just stopped making music completely,he recalls. I was dead inside. I lost all desire to take care of myself. I gained 75 pounds .I thought I had no reason to live. I didn't have the music anymore. There is a history of addiction in my family and my hope is that it ends with me, says Ty Herndon.
Family, Friends, and Nashville songwriters rallied around him as he turned his life around, regained his health, lost the excess weight and began to sing again. Herndon returned to the stage with a Music City nightclub showcase in the summer of 2004.
"Songwriter Darrell Brown asked me to come to the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville two Christmases ago. He said he had a song that he and Michael Peterson had written that he thought I could sing really well. And that's 'Right About Now.' The crowd just came to their feet when I sang it. And I can honestly tell you with all of my heart, it was at that moment that I thought, 'I want to make music again.' After I sang that song, that night, I started to think I wanted to do a new record. I had a real vision."
Brown has co-written such #1 hits as Keith Urban's Raining on Sunday and 2005 Grammy Song of The Year You'll Think of Me. He has also produced records for such artists as Russ Taff and Radney Foster. When he volunteered to work with Herndon, the singer eagerly accepted, co-producing four of the tunes that Brown brought to the project. Top session musician Jonathan Yudkin was eager to make the transition into record production. Herndon enlisted his aid for five more of the album's tracks. Herndon co-produced Mighty, Mighty Love with multi-platinum writer Dennis Matkosky, one of its co-writers. Recording artists Kim Richey, Robert Bailey, Emily West, Lisa Bevil, Perry Coleman, Marcus Hummon and Joanna Cotton provided background vocals to the richly textured collection.
The people who believed in me and my talent made me even more serious about this. There were so many songs that fit where I am at emotionally right now, and I wanted to sing about that. Three years ago, I couldn't sing the way I used to. I can sing these songs now. My throat is clearer than it has ever been before, and that feeling is just awesome. Isn't this a miracle? I have a light in my eyes. And this is a happy place to be.
To tell you the truth, I had a lot of spiritual experiences making this record. I am very, very proud of it.
Recent Ty Herndon Interview:
Eleven years ago, Ty Herndon set country music tipping back on its heels with his debut album and No. 1 title track "What Mattered Most." And today, with a string of gold albums under his belt, Herndon is still going strong with upcoming seventh album. A work-in-progress, the new album is slated for release later this year, with the first single due to hit country radio this fall.
"The new album is probably the best record I've done since 'What Mattered Most,' " says Herndon, who will headline the "Parents Dedicated To Child Care" country music concert at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in the Pontiac Township High School auditorium. "I'm more mature and grounded these days -- and you can hear the resulting fun, love, and life within this project."
Opening for Herndon will be the Peoria-based country band, Southern Cross. Tickets are available at the door or by calling Jean Wilson at (815) 844-1902 or (815) 433-5853.
While Herndon's previous albums showcase such No.1 hits as, "Living In A Moment," and "It Must Be Love," the new album will also feature songs about life and love.
"My No. 1 philosophy in regards to recording is being able to relate to the story of a song," Herndon said. "A song really has to fit the artist singing it, or it just doesn't work."
Herndon, a Butler, Ala., native, honed his craft at an early age by playing piano and singing gospel, bluegrass, and country music.
After high school graduation, he moved to Nashville and paid his musical dues by performing at Opryland, joining The Tennessee River Boys (later to become Diamond Rio), touring military bases with Bob Hope's USO show, and becoming a first-season finalist on the television talent show "Star Search."
Moving to Texas, Herndon developed a loyal following by performing the club and honky-tonk circuits. In 1993, he won the Texas Music Association Entertainer of the Year award and landed a major label recording contract later that year.
Chart-topping career hits for Herndon include, "I Want My Goodbye Back," "Loved Too Much," "A Man Holdin' On (To A Woman Lettin' Go)," "Hands Of A Working Man and "Steam."
For Herndon, being able to connect with the listener through meaningful songs is "What Mattered Most" in his career.
"Music gives one a feeling of peace, grace, healing, and celebration," Herndon says. "All those things, to me, are gifts from a higher power -- of God. Others might describe differently, but I recognize, and appreciate music as being that way."
PONTIAC: Herndon to headline benefit concert
TAMELA MEREDITH PARTRIDGE
TY HERNDON STATS
Newest Ty Facts and Stats
(Last updated - September, 2003)
Ty's complete given name: Boyd Tyrone Herndon
Birthday: May 2, 1962
Birthplace: Meridian, Mississippi
Hometown: Butler, Alabama
Current home: Los Angeles, California (but moving back to Nashville)
Favorite TV Shows: Everybody Loves Raymond, Law and Order
Favorite Foods: Chicken and Dumplings, Steak & Gravy
Favorite Snacks: Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
If I had a different career it would be: A psychologist or a carpenter
Favorite color: Burgundy and Dark Green
Musical Influences: Bonnie Raitt, Connie Smith, Vestal Goodman
Favorite song by any artist: "I Can't Make You Love Me", Bonnie Raitt
Favorite song I ever recorded: I Know How the River Feels
Favorite Male/Female Artists: Steve Wariner, Bonnie Raitt, Conway Twitty, Connie Smith
Favorite books: Bible, The Left Behind Series
Favorite Movie: Somewhere in Time, Fried Green Tomatoes, The Color Purple
Favorite actors/actresses: Meryl Streep, Robert Duvall
Dream duet would be with: LeAnn Rimes, Jennifer Holliday
Favorite Vacation Spot? Rio De Janeiro
Hobbies: Songwriting, skiing, reading, watching movies, woodworking
Instruments - Piano and guitar
Career Highlights - 1983 - Won Star Search Championship
Won 1993 Texas Entertainer Of The Year
1995 - Won Country Radio New Male Artist
Nominations - 1996 - American Music Association - Favorite New Country Artist
1996 - TNN - Music City News - Star OF Tomorrow
1996 - British Country Music Rising Star
1996 - Performance Magazine Readers Poll Best New Artist
1996 - ACM - First Ballot - Male Vocalist, Duet, Single and song 1997 - TNN - Music City News - Star Of Tomorrow
1999 - CMT - Male Video Artist Of The Year
1st Record Deal - Epic Records - March, 1994-2002
#1 Singles - "What Mattered Most", "Living In A Moment" and "It Must Be Love"
Top 10 Singles - "I Want My Goodbye Back", "Loved Too Much", "A Man Holding On...", "Hands Of A Working Man"
Top 20 Singles - "She Wants To Be Wanted Again", "I Have To Surrender", "Heart Half Empty", "Steam"
Top 40 Singles - "In Your Face", "No Mercy", "A Love Like that", "Heathers Wall", A Few Short Years"
Gold Records - "What Mattered Most" - February, 1997
Living In A Moment - June, 1997
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