HomeEntertainmentMusicCountry Throwback: Watch 29-Year-Old George Strait Perform One of His Earliest Hits Atop a Boat

Country Throwback: Watch 29-Year-Old George Strait Perform One of His Earliest Hits Atop a Boat

by Matthew Wilson
Photo credit: Paul Natkin/Getty Images

You may be cool. But no one will ever be George Strait performing atop a boat cool. Even legends have to start somewhere. And a 29-year-old Strait is all heart-throb and swagger as he plays one of his earliest hits “Down and Out.”

Country music fans may be surprised to see Strait so baby-faced. It’s not hard to see why Strait captured the hearts of millions of fans. Strait has always had a stage presence. (They don’t call him the King of Country Music for nothing). But as a young man, Strait practically oozed charisma as he smiled at fans during the middle of his performance.

There’s also an authenticity to him as well. Strait didn’t put on a cowboy hat and play pretend. As he answered at the end of the video, Strait had a 14,000-acre ranch, loved to rope steers, and was more than at home in a Texas honky-tonk.

On YouTube, several fans traced the video to the TV show “Nashville on The Road,” which aired between 1975 to 1983. According to IMDb, Strait specifically appeared in Season 7, Episode 19. Strait played “Down and Out” and “Unwound” during the episode. That episode aired in 1982.

George Strait Was a Superstar in the Making

One commenter appeared surprised at the smaller crowd for the event. Because these days, a Strait concert would sell out a stadium and then some.

While his hit “Down and Out” only reached No. 16 on the charts, Strait would soon start churning a string of No. 1 hits. In fact, Strait holds the crown for hit singles. You could literally package the number of Strait’s songs into multiple CDs. Currently, Strait has 60 to his name, no small achievement by any means.

Additionally, Strait has won 23 CMA Awards across his career including the coveted Entertainer of the Year award in 1989, 1990, and 2013. President George W. Bush also awarded him the National Medal of the Arts in the early 2000s for his contribution to music.

Retiring in 2014, Strait doesn’t perform as much as he used to. But he’ll hop back on stage every now and then to remind fans who the true king of country is. He also continues to record and produce albums. Currently, he has recorded 30 studio albums with his latest releasing in 2019.