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Lee Ann Womack

Lee Ann Womack signing an autograph.
Background information
Birth name Lee Ann Womack
Born August 19, 1966 (1966-08-19) (age 43)
Origin Jacksonville, Texas, US
Genres Country
Occupations singer-songwriter
Instruments Vocals, Guitar
Years active 1992 – present
Labels Decca Nashville
MCA Nashville
Mercury Nashville
Associated acts Cross Canadian Ragweed, Willie Nelson, Jason Sellers, George Strait
Website Official Website

Lee Ann Womack (born August 19, 1966 in Jacksonville, Texas, United States) is an American country music singer and songwriter, who is best-known for her old fashioned-styled country music songs that often discuss subjects such as cheating and lost love.[1] Her 2000 single, "I Hope You Dance" was a major crossover music hit, reaching #1 on the Billboard Country Chart and the Top 15 of the Billboard Hot 100, becoming her signature song.[2]

Although Lee Ann Womack emerged as a contemporary country artist in 1997 with the release of her first album, her material closely resembled that of Dolly Parton and Tammy Wynette,[3] mixing Womack's music with an old fashioned style, as well as contemporary elements, making her different from her counterparts. Her 2000 release I Hope You Dance, however, was an entirely different sound, using pop music elements instead of traditional country, helping to establish Womack as a pop crossover artist. It was not until the release of There's More Where That Came From in 2005 that Womack returned to recording traditional country music.

Presently, Womack has released a total of six studio albums and two compilations. Four of her studio albums have received a Gold certification or higher by the RIAA, and she has sold over five million albums in the United States. Additionally, she has received five Academy of Country Music Awards, five Country Music Association Awards, and two Grammy Awards.


Early life

Womack was born and raised in Jacksonville, Texas, United States. At an early age, she was interested in country music. Her father, a disc jockey, often took his daughter to work with him to help choose records to play on the air.[4] Womack was the second of two daughters. Her mother was a schoolteacher and her father was also a high school principal. As a child, Womack studied the piano and later graduated from Jacksonville High School in 1984.[1] After graduating, Womack attended South Plains Junior College in Levelland, Texas. The college was one of the first in the nation to offer country music degrees, and soon she became a member of the college band, Country Caravan.[4] A year later, she left the college and after an agreement with her parents, Womack enrolled at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, where she studied the commercial ways of the music business. In Nashville, she interned at the A&R department of MCA Records. She studied at the college until 1990, leaving the school a year before graduation.[1]

Womack spent a few years raising her children before reentering the music business in the mid 90s.[2] In 1995 she began performing her music in songwriting demos and at showcase concerts. At one of these showcase concerts, she was spotted by Tree Publishings, who signed her after listening to one of original demo recordings.[4] Womack wrote songs with some popular Nashville songwriters, including Bill Anderson and Ricky Skaggs, who recorded her composition, "I Don't Remember Forgetting" for one of his albums. After divorcing her first husband around that time, Womack decided to pursue a career as a country music artist. She auditioned for MCA chairman, Bruce Hinton, who praised her talents. Shortly afterward, she accepted a contract from MCA's sister record company, Decca Nashville in 1996.[1]

Music career


Country music stardom: 1997 — 1999

Womack released her self-titled debut album in May 1997, produced by Mark Wright. The album consisted of self-penned material as well as songs written by other artists, including Mark Chesnutt, Ricky Skaggs, and Sharon White.[4] With the original release of the album, there was worry that the album wouldn't sell because some people wouldn't be able to differentiate between her and LeAnn Rimes, who was also a successful artist at that time. However, Womack decided to keep her given name.[2] The first single, "Never Again, Again" made the country charts and playlists by March 1997, which led to the release of the album's second single, "The Fool" shortly afterward. More successful than her first single, "The Fool" reached the Top 5 on the Billboard Country chart that year. That year she won major awards from the country music community; Top New Female Vocalist from the Academy of Country Music Awards, Top Artist of the Year from Billboard Magazine, and was nominated for the Horizon award by the Country Music Association.[1] Decca Nashville decided to closed its doors in 1998, moving Womack to MCA Nashville Records that year.[5]

In 1998, Womack released her second studio album, Some Things I Know,[1] which was also produced by Mark Wright.[3] The album's first two singles, "A Little Past Little Rock" and "I'll Think of a Reason Later" both went to #2 on the Billboard Country Chart.[5] Two additional singles, "Now You See Me (Now You Don't)" and "Don't Tell Me" were released in 1999, and the album was certified Gold by the RIAA soon after.

That year, she also won Favorite New Country Artist from the American Music Awards.[2] Womack also contributed her vocals to the songs "If You're Ever Down in Dallas" and "The Man Who Made Mama Cry" in collaboration with her ex-husband and musician, Jason Sellers. The material was promoted through shows through October to November before the birth of Womack's second child in January 1999.[3]

Pop crossover success & career decline: 2000 — 2004

She released her third studio album in 2000 entitled, I Hope You Dance, which was met with major success.[1] The title track (which was released as the lead single), reached #1 on the Billboard Country chart for five weeks and crossed over to the Billboard Hot 100, becoming a major crossover Pop hit, reaching #14. It also peaked at the top spot on the adult contemporary chart. Both of Womack's daughters appeared in the song's video that year. Towards the end of 2000, "I Hope You Dance" won the Country Music Association's "Song of the Year" and "Single of the Year" awards.[5] With the Pop success of "I Hope You Dance," Womack drew the attention of the magazines People and Time, both of which praised the single, calling it "one of her best." The song later won awards in 2001 from the Grammy and Academy of Country music awards.[1] The album of the same name has sold 3 million copies in the United States to date.[5] The album's follow-up single, a cover of Rodney Crowell's "Ashes by Now" peaked at #4 on the Billboard Country Chart. The third single, "Why They Call it Falling" was also successful, reaching the country Top 15.

On December 11, 2000, Womack performed "I Hope You Dance" at the annual Nobel Peace Prize concert.

In 2002 Womack's fourth studio album, Something Worth Leaving Behind was released. The album made a stronger attempt at a pop-flavored style, however it did not react well, leading to poor record sales and only one major hit. Following its release, Womack's career stalled. Later that year, she released a Christmas album, The Season for Romance and also collaborated with Willie Nelson on his single, "Mendocino County Line," which won a Grammy and Country Music award in 2002.[5] In early 2003, she got a small recurring role on the popular CBS drama, The District.[4]

In 2004, Womack performed "I Hope You Dance" at the Republican National Convention, in which George W. Bush was nominated for his second term as President of the United States. The other performers that night included Sara Evans and Larry Gatlin.[6] She also collaborated with country band, Cross Canadian Ragweed on their minor hit, "Sick and Tired" in 2004. The song became a minor hit.[7] Also that year, she also released her first Greatest Hits album, which included two new songs; "The Wrong Girl" (the only song from the album released as a single) and "Time for Me to Go."

There's More Where That Came From & hiatus: 2005 — 2007

In 2005, she released her fifth studio album aimed at traditional country music entitled, There's More Where That Came From.[5] Many people in the music industry called the album, "a return to tradition," featuring songs about drinking and cheating with a distinctive older country twang, mixing strings and steel guitar. The album won the Country Music Association's "Album of the Year" award in 2005.[8] Womack took inspiration from the records of the 60s and 70s, and according to, the album sounded like albums by Loretta Lynn, Barbara Mandrell, and Dolly Parton from the 70s. They also called it one of her best records.[9] The lead single, "I May Hate Myself in the Morning" was a Top 10 hit in 2005, and also won "Single of the Year" by the CMA awards later that year.[5] Two additional singles were released from the album in 2005 that became minor hits, "He Oughta Know That by Now" and "Twenty Years and Two Husbands Ago." The album was released on vinyl LP as well as CD.

Womack can be heard on the track "If I Could Only Fly" from Joe Nichols' album Real Things.[10] Womack has also appeared on specials on the CMT network, including their, "100 Greatest Duets", which featured Womack singing the duet with Kenny Rogers, "Every Time Two Fools Collide". The song had been originally recorded by Rogers and Dottie West in 1978 and was a No. 1 Country hit that year. Womack took the place of West during that show, being West had died in a serious car accident in September of 1991. Womack's other honors includes being listed at #17 on CMT's 2002 special of their countdown of the 40 Greatest Women of Country Music.

In 2006, Womack announced plans of a sixth studio album off of Mercury Nashville Records. The lead single, "Finding My Way Back Home" was released in the late summer of that year and debuted at #46 on the Billboard Country Chart.[7] The single later peaked at #37 and was re-scheduled into 2007, because Womack found more songs that she wanted to record, however it was never released and Womack left Mercury.[11]

Return to music: 2008 — present

In 2008, Womack announced plans for a new single for the first time in three years, once again on MCA Nashville. "Last Call" was released on June 30, 2008. It served as the lead-off single to Womack's seventh studio album, Call Me Crazy, which was released on October 21, 2008.

Call Me Crazy was issued as a vinyl LP at the time of its release, as well as CD.

Call Me Crazy, produced by Tony Brown, is said to be a very dark album with plenty of songs about drinking and losing love. The new album will also feature a duet with George Strait titled "Everything But Quits." The set also features a re-make of the George Strait classic, "The King of Broken Hearts," which first appeared on the Pure Country soundtrack. One track on the set, "The Bees," features vocals from Keith Urban.[12]

In October 2009, Womack released "There Is a God", as the lead-off single to her upcoming seventh studio album which is expected for release in the summer of 2010, Lee Ann Womack revealed in a chat. The song debuted at #60 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for the week of November 14, 2009.

Personal life

At Belmont University, Womack met and married fellow musician singer-songwriter Jason Sellers in 1990. Together they had daughter Aubrie Lee Sellers, born 1991, before divorcing in 1996.[13] In January 1999 daughter Anna Lise Liddell was born after Lee Ann married record producer Frank Liddell.




Year Award Category
1997 Academy of Country Music Awards Top New Female Vocalist
1997 British Country Music Awards Best International Country Album of the Year
1998 American Music Association Awards Favorite New Country Artist
2000 Academy of Country Music Awards Top Single of the Year for, "I Hope You Dance"
2000 Academy of Country Music Awards Top Song of the Year for, "I Hope You Dance"
2000 Academy of Country Music Awards Top Vocal Event of the Year for, "I Hope You Dance" (w/ Sons of the Desert)
2000 Country Music Association Awards Single of the Year for, "I Hope You Dance"
2000 Country Music Association Awards Song of the Year for, "I Hope You Dance"
2001 Grammy Awards Best Country Song for, "I Hope You Dance"
2001 Country Music Association Awards Female Vocalist of the Year
2001 Billboard Music Awards Adult Contemporary Song of the Year for, "I Hope You Dance"
2002 Grammy Awards Best Country Collaboration w/ Vocals for, "Mendocino County Line" (w/ Willie Nelson)
2002 Academy of Country Music Awards Top Vocal Event of the Year for, "Mendocino County Line" (w/ Willie Nelson)
2002 Country Music Association Awards Vocal Event of the Year for, "Mendocino County Line" (w/ Willie Nelson)
2005 Country Music Association Awards Single of the Year for, "I May Hate Myself in the Morning"
2005 Country Music Association Awards Album of the Year for, There's More Where That Came From
2005 Country Music Association Awards Best Musical Event for, "Good News, Bad News" (w/ George Strait)


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Cooksey, Gloria. "Lee Ann Womack Biography". Musician Retrieved 2008-11-28. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Ask Biography". Ask Men. Retrieved 2008-11-28. 
  3. ^ a b c Larkin, Collin. "Lee Ann Womack Biography". Retrieved 2008-11-29. 
  4. ^ a b c d e Thomas Erlewine, Stephen. "Lee Ann Womack - Biography". allmusic. Retrieved 2008-11-29. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g "Lee Ann Womack: Biography". Country Music Television (has certain information that allmusic doesn't have). Retrieved 2008-11-29. 
  6. ^ Patterson, Thom. "GOP convention aims at moderates". CNN. Retrieved 2008-11-29. 
  7. ^ a b "Lee Ann Womack biography". Retrieved 2008-11-29. 
  8. ^ Alanna Nash and Paul Kingsbury, ed (2006). "Ch. 12: Pocketful of Gold". Will the Circle Be Unbroken: Country Music in America". New York, NY: DK Publishing, Inc. pp. 349. 
  9. ^ Thomas Erlewine, Stephen. "There's More Where That Came From album review". allmusic. Retrieved 2008-11-29. 
  10. ^ Morris, Edward. "Joe Nichols Celebrates Real Things in new album". Country Music Television: News. Retrieved 2008-11-30. 
  11. ^ Haislop, Neil. "Country Q&A: Week of April 18, 2007".,3034,GAC_26416_5489210_,00.html. Retrieved 2008-11-30. 
  12. ^ "Lee Ann Womack's New Album Features Strait, Urban". Country Music Television: News (June 19, 2008). Retrieved 2008-11-30. 
  13. ^ "Womack scores a double whammy with new release". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2008-11-30. 

External links

Simple English

Lee Ann Womack was born August 19, 1966. Her place of birth is Jacksonville, Texas. She is an American country singer and songwriter. Womack has won a number of music awards for her music and singing.


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