Marty Stuart

The origin of this article is unknown - 1994

He wears flashy rhinestone and Western suits, plays guitars previously owned by Hank Williams Sr. and Lester Flatt and tours in Ernest Tubb's old bus, where he spent many a youthful hour learning how to play poker from the masters. But it is Marty Stuart's integrity--his determination to be true to himself and to the country tradition--that has made him one of the most respected people in country music. He's an entertainer, a singer, a songwriter and a musician. He's able to combine the classic roots of where country has been with the cutting edge of where country is going.

The thirty-something artist was born in Mississippi, but he got his schooling--musician and otherwise--on the road, playing mandolin and guitar with Lester Flatt and Johnny Cash. He likens the years with Flatt to a high school education and his stint with Cash to earning a university degree. He really did go to high school with Flatt, joining the band at the age of 13. His age may have made him somewhat of a novelty onstage, but his performance on mandolin and guitar was strictly professional quality.

Stuart produced his first solo album himself in 1982 and, in 1986, he made his major label debut on CBS Records with Marty Stuart. It wasn't until 1990, however, that Marty started receiving national attention as an artist. He signed with MCA Records and released Hillbilly Rock. At MCA, Marty put an extra kick into his music and called it "hillbilly music--with a thump." Even more important to him than the hit singles were the nods of approval he received from the stars of the Grand Ole Opry.

With his second MCA album, Tempted, he began to feel he had a style of music he could call his own. "I've played so many kinds of music with so many people, it was a long way back to my heart and soul," he said at the time.

With This One's Gonna Hurt You, he said simply, "I feel like I've done my job. I finally got the past, present and future together." On the strength of his title-cut duet with Travis Tritt and their highly successful "No Hats" Tour (over 100 dates together), This One's Gonna Hurt You became Stuart's first gold album.

His most recent album, Love And Luck, has been much harder to produce. He actually postponed recording the album for several months until he found the right music. "I spent a whole year trying to write and find songs for this album that came from a deeper place," he explains. "I really consider this album an adventure from a writing standpoint and wanted every song to have a story."

Known for having his own style, both musically and fashionably, Stuart has "always wanted to be known as the guy on the other side of town. My heroes were Johnny Cash and Bob Dylan when it came to that. They were always the guys on the other side of town and you always wondered what they were going to bring to town with them, but you could always count on it being something great. That's what I'm working hard on doing. I love being a renegade and I love being a little bit to the left."

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