Steve Earle

Steve Earle (born Stephen Fain Earle on January 17, 1955 in San Antonio, Texas) is a singer-songwriter best known for his country music and rock 'n roll tinged "alt-country." He is also a published writer, a keen political activist (particularly in protesting against the death penalty in the U.S., as in his song "Ellis Unit One" from the movie Dead Man Walking), and has written and directed a play. Earle also had small roles on the HBO television shows "The Wire" and "Treme". His sister Stacey Earle is also an acclaimed singer-songwriter, as is his most recent wife, Allison Moorer, whom he wed in 2005. His first son from an earlier marriage is the singer-songwriter Justin Townes Earle, named for Earle's hero Townes Van Zandt.

Earle was born in Fort Monroe, Virginia, and grew up near San Antonio, Texas. His father, Jack Earle, was an air traffic controller. Although he was born in Virginia where his father was stationed, the family returned to Texas before Earle's second birthday. They moved several times but Earle grew up primarily in the San Antonio area.
Earle began learning the guitar at the age of 11 and placed in a talent contest at his school at age 13. He is reported to have run away from home at age 14 to follow his idol, singer-songwriter Townes Van Zandt around Texas. Earle was "rebellious" as a youngster and dropped out of school at the age of 16. He moved to Houston with his 19-year-old uncle, who was also a musician, where he married and worked odd jobs. While in Houston Earle finally met Van Zandt, who became his hero and role model.

In 1975, at the age of 20, Earle moved to Nashville and began working as a songwriter. In these early days, he recorded with Guy Clark and Emmylou Harris. He finally scored a country hit in 1981, writing Johnny Lee's top ten cut "When You Fall in Love." Earle's early work as a performer tended towards the rockabilly sound, popular at the time. In 1986, his first proper album Guitar Town was a critical and commercial success. It sold over 300,000 copies and led some to herald him as a saviour of country music.

Earle long struggled with drug abuse. His addiction eventually caused a departure from performing and recording after he was dropped by MCA in 1991. Whilst in jail on drug and firearm charges, he kicked the habit and returned to music after his release in 1994.

Earle's "second, post-jail, musical career" has been more stylistically diverse than his early material, dipping in acoustic, bluegrass, and roots rock sounds. I Feel Alright and Transcendental Blues met with good reviews and decent sales. 2002's somewhat controversial Jerusalem was one of the first albums to directly address the September 11 attacks. It brought Earle's leftist views to media attention, especially the song "John Walker's Blues."

His latest album of original material I'll Never Get Out Of This World Alive was released in 2011. Songfacts reports that one of the tracks, This City, got played on HBO’s New Orleans based show Treme several months before the album‘s release. Earle, who plays a recurring street musician, composed the song especially for the drama series.

Earle has also released a tribute album of material written by friend and mentor Townes Van Zandt, entitled Townes.

For more information and photographs of Steve Earle go to his official website,

Song lyric Copperhead Road COPPERHEAD ROAD Steve Earle
Song lyric Guitar Town GUITAR TOWN Steve Earle
Song lyric Someday SOMEDAY Steve Earle
Song lyric Johnny Come Lately JOHNNY COME LATELY Steve Earle
Song lyric My Old Friend The Blues MY OLD FRIEND THE BLUES Steve Earle
Song lyric Meet Me In The Alleyway MEET ME IN THE ALLEYWAY Steve Earle
Song lyric Fearless Heart FEARLESS HEART Steve Earle
Song lyric Goodbye GOODBYE Steve Earle
Song lyric Ellis Unit One ELLIS UNIT ONE Steve Earle
Song lyric I Feel Alright I FEEL ALRIGHT Steve Earle
Song lyric More Than I Can Do MORE THAN I CAN DO Steve Earle
Song lyric Angry Young Man ANGRY YOUNG MAN Steve Earle
Song lyric Billy Austin BILLY AUSTIN Steve Earle
Song lyric Christmas In Washington CHRISTMAS IN WASHINGTON Steve Earle
Song lyric Condi, Condi CONDI, CONDI Steve Earle
Song lyric Dixieland DIXIELAND Steve Earle
Song lyric Ft. Worth Blues FT. WORTH BLUES Steve Earle
Song lyric Hard Core Troubadour HARD CORE TROUBADOUR Steve Earle
Song lyric Hometown Blues HOMETOWN BLUES Steve Earle
Song lyric Hopeless Romantics HOPELESS ROMANTICS Steve Earle
Song lyric John Walker's Blues JOHN WALKER'S BLUES Steve Earle
Song lyric My Back Pages MY BACK PAGES Steve Earle
Song lyric N.y.c. N.Y.C. Steve Earle
Song lyric Nowhere Road NOWHERE ROAD Steve Earle
Song lyric Pilgrim PILGRIM Steve Earle
Song lyric Poison Lovers POISON LOVERS Steve Earle
Song lyric Sometimes She Forgets SOMETIMES SHE FORGETS Steve Earle
Song lyric Somewhere Out There SOMEWHERE OUT THERE Steve Earle
Song lyric Texas 1947 TEXAS 1947 Steve Earle
Song lyric The Other Kind THE OTHER KIND Steve Earle
Song lyric The Other Side Of Town THE OTHER SIDE OF TOWN Steve Earle
Song lyric The Week of Living Dangerously THE WEEK OF LIVING DANGEROUSLY Steve Earle
Song lyric White Freight Liner Blues WHITE FREIGHT LINER BLUES Steve Earle