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Tracey K. Houston
Review By Amy Ross, CSO Contributing Journalist

When you think about traditional country artists, the ones from back in “the day” what do you picture? Let me paint one for you. Tracey K Houston grew up country. Being raised in the beautiful country side of Alberta and British Columbia in Canada, she experienced the hardships of a poor farming family. The youngest of four children, two boys and two girls all of which had responsibilities on the farm. Houston could remember at five years old helping on the hay rake while her sister, three years older, was driving the tractor. No electricity or running water for a spell they washed their laundry on a wash board and hauled water from a near by creek until her step father finished building their family home.

As young as three years old Houston remembers hearing artists such as Loretta Lynn , Tammy Wynette and Hank Williams, being played on her mothers record player, and grew up singing along. Houston paid close attention to detail when singing with the Loretta Lynn albums “I always made sure to get it exact,” said Houston “ her style her annunciation, phrasing and, you know, get that same sound”. She knew then that she wanted to be a country artist and performer.

Houston’s first stage performance was in 1987 and was recording her first album in 1991 followed by the release of her first single in 1993 ‘He's Not For Real’ was released in Canada and Europe and was quite a success. Houston made the transition to Nashville in 1995 to stake her claim on country music. After recovering from a severe car accident in 1996, a #1 single on the independent charts "Falling For You" was released in 1997, the first of many successes upon moving to the U.S.

From 2000 to 2003 Houston released two more successful albums and upon auditioning for a role in Tammy Wynette, Stand By Your Man presentation, in 2001, and later attending the show to view the winning artists performance she decided to do a tribute album of her own. She chose to do the tribute for Loretta Lynn because “there is nobody else doing a Loretta tribute and I love her music.” Houston started her research and scripting for the Hey Loretta, The Girl From Butcher Holler show, a presentation of song and story that tells the story of Loretta Lynn’s fame, start to finish. The story was finished in 2002 and the first performance was in 2003.

Performing the Hey Loretta show all over the continent, from BC to Florida, Houston likes that she can appeal to her kind of crowd; “at the RV resorts it was always sold out. They just loved it. I thought it was great because for me to be singing to the older demographic, which is my kind of crowd, it brought them back 20 to 30 years and gave them good memories”. Houston’s current album Tracey K Houston: Salute to Loretta Lynn was only recently finished and she is undecided as of yet on which label she will release the album on, but hopes to have it released in the very near future.

Houston is what I would call country to the core. Not only a very giving woman with a warm heart, but to overcome so many obstacles in her aspiring career she is also very driven. All for the love of traditional country music. It was a great pleasure to visit with such a grounded woman.

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