Luke Bryan has come a long way from growing up in the small town of Leesburg, Ga., to earning the coveted American Country Music Awards title of "Entertainer of the Year" in 2013. While growing up, he helped his father work on his peanut and fertilizer farm while developing a passion for country music. His mother used to urge him to sing George Strait songs while they were running errands when Bryan was a child. When he was 14, his parents bought him his first guitar and Bryan started the task of learning the instrument. By 15, he was playing local shows with other local musicians, and at 16, he had started to write songs with two locals who had already been to the country capital, Nashville, where they had already achieved great success.
Country Star in the Making
After Bryan realized he wanted a career in country music, he made plans to head to Nashville after graduating from high school. However, his plans were derailed when the eve before he was scheduled to move, his brother, Chris, died in a car accident. Instead of pursuing his career, Bryan decided it was more important to be with his family, and ultimately attended Georgia Southern University, which was close to home. He continued to play music and perform on the side, and after graduating, he went to work for his dad, but his father knew Bryan's heart wasn't in it, so he gave him an ultimatum: Move to Nashville, or he will fire him.
2001 - The Move to Nashville
So in 2001, Bryan moved to Nashville and continued to play his original material at local clubs and bars, and two months later he had signed a publishing deal with Murrah Music, and was offered a deal with Capitol Records Nashville in 2004. His first big break was actually on the songwriting end of the industry, collaborating on Billy Currington's "Good Directions" and Travis Tritt's "Honky Tonk History."
He released his debut album, I'll Stay Me," in 2007, and followed it up with "Doin' My Thing" in 2009, which landed at the No. 2 spot on the country charts and No. 6 on the Top 200. The album spawned two No. 1 singles: "Rain Is a Good Thing" and "Someone Else Calling You Baby."
2011-13 Success Continues with "Tailgates and Tanlines" and "Spring Break...Here to Party"
His third album, "Tailgates and Tanlines," went double platinum with hits like "Country Girl (Shake it For Me)," "Drunk on You," "I Don't Want This Night to End," and "Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye." In 2013, Bryan compiled his four spring break-themed EPs that had been released since 2009 into "Spring Break...Here to Party," with two additional new songs as well.
Luke Bryan has deep country roots, and if his southern accent and Georgia birthplace don't give it away, then his music sure will. Bryan has a typical country voice, but he combines it with a contemporary twist on his music. Most of his songs are about things he has been through in his life, and they all relate back to his days growing up on the farm. Drinking and having a good time are also a premise for a plethora of his songs, which he has illustrated by performing multiple times at Spring Break in Panama City Beach.