Doug Stone Biography
When Doug Stone’s debut single entered the charts, the country music industry was long overdue for a male artist who not only specialized in sincere and moving love songs, but one who also was versatile enough not to be pigeonholed as a one-sided ballad singer. The year was 1990, and Doug’s “I’d Be Better Off (In A Pine Box)” hurled the Newnan, Georgia native into country’s top five and forever etched his poignant and vulnerable vocal style into the psyche of country fans everywhere.
Combine Doug Stone’s own noteworthy songwriting, a penchant for piercingly laconic material, innate working class sensibilities and his supple country baritone voice and you end up with recordings that carry a uniquely powerful and arrow-direct emotional punch.
All of these ingredients simmered in the stew of Doug’s youth, which included the splitting of his parents at age 12. Doug credits the influence of his singing, guitar-picking mother, Gail, for his lifetime affair with country music. When Doug was 7 years old, she began to take him along to her local gigs and later that year arranged for him to open a Loretta Lynn show.
Doug’s mother was firm in her belief that her son was a diamond-in-the-rough star and worked diligently to ink dates for his band. One such 1987 date took place at a VFW hall where Doug gained notice from Phyllis Bennett who became his first manager. With Bennett’s help, Doug signed a recording Contract, which led to the release of his debut album and launched him headlong into overnight sensation status. At the time, Doug was working as a maintenance worker at a local country club.
Each of Doug’s first fifteen singles peaked inside the top 5, with eight hitting No. 1, including “In A Different Light,” “I Thought It Was You,” “Too Busy Being In Love,” “I Never Knew Love,” and the Grammy-nominated “I’d Be Better Off (In A Pine Box).”
After surviving emergency quadruple heart bypass surgery at age 35, a subsequent heart attack, and complicated voice problems, Doug Stone is today at his most resilient and resolved. He says “I feel better today than I every have. I quit smoking more than 4 years ago; I eat healthy and try to do as much physical activity as possible. I’m happier than I’ve ever been.”
Doug also has a renewed enthusiasm about his own songwriting but says he’s only interested in really great material. “That’s led us to scout out the best writers and co-writers. This really is the best album I’ve cut since the first one.”
“I’ve been touring the country and visiting radio stations everywhere we can, I’ve always loved to do that. Everyone at radio has been just great to me. So many of them have said, ‘It’s great to have you back, and even better to see you so healthy and singing better than you ever have,’ and that feels wonderful.”