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Classic Country News

Toby Keith In His Own Words

Toby Keith died on February 5th, at the age of 62, following a lengthy battle with stomach cancer. According to a post on his social media accounts, the country star was surrounded by his family at the time of his passing. The note added, “He fought his fight with grace and courage.” The singer, well known for hits like “How Do You Like Me Now?” and “Beer For My Horses” previously told us: 

  • Keith explained, while he doesn't get to spend much time at home, the time spent there is quality: "First of all, they (his kids) are provided for a lot better than they would be if I was a cross-country truck driver. I'm gone a lot of the time, but when I'm home, I'm completely off. You know, it ain't like I'm coming home at five everyday and I've got that three hours before they've got to be in bed, so they can get up and go to school the next morning. I've got all of those days off, they're all day and all night. They are all mine."
  • Keith kept such a tight schedule and busy life because, as he explains, he knows how important it is to keep his fans happy: "They are the only reason we do this. I would probably make music for my own satisfaction if that's all there was to do. I love music that much, so I would probably write songs. But, the reason we do albums and the reason we go out on tour is because of the fans. You unplug all of that, you know... you can never forget them. You unplug that, then there's no place for any of us to go. That's how important the fans are."
  • Keith told us that credit for his success goes to his ability to diversify. "You know, you've got all these things -- I've got restaurants and bars and grills . . . I've got so many other things -- makin' movies and things -- that promotes my brand name and stuff that I'll never be bigger than country music, but I'll be bigger than the people that run country music. I'm so big that the people that do run country music can't stop me. You see what I'm sayin'? It's a beautiful position to be in. You'll never be their poster child but at the same time they can't do s**t about it."
  • The singer says live performance is one of the most important aspects of his career: "If we're into an audience that's completely over-the-top into us, it's real easy to do it every night, because you know what they are there to hear and you know you've got it in your rotation. And you just keep feeding the monster, you know, and you're trying to take them completely over the top where they're seeing the best show they've ever seen."
  • Keith talked about how hard it is to please everyone as he prepared to launch his own record label: "Well, I think you just move on and concentrate your energies on the things that will make you most successful, and you obviously can't please everybody. You think you've got to try to please 'em all and you just can't do it, so at some point, you back up and you go, 'You know what? Let's do an inventory of what works for you and what doesn't, and let's concentrate on your news goals and achievements that you're gonna do,' like the publishing company and possibly a label and things like that."