Singer, songwriter, musician. Born on November 10, 1983, in Longview, Texas. Only in her twenties, Miranda Lambert has emerged as one of country music’s rising stars. She grew up in Lindale, a small town where her parents ran a private detective agency. Her father was also a guitarist and songwriter, and she grew up listening to such country music greats as Merle Haggard and Guy Clark.
At the age of 10, Lambert entered her first country music talent show. Her budding career got a boost from performing on Johnnie High’s Country Music Revue, a weekly variety show in Arlington, Texas. This program helped launch the careers of several other country music stars, including LeAnn Rimes and Lee Ann Womack. Another talent contest led to some acting work, appearing in a commercial and the teen comedy Slap Her She’s French (2001).
Inspired by such singer-songwriters as Emmylou Harris, Lambert began writing her own songs after learning how to play the guitar from her father. She started her own band called Texas Pride at the age of 17 while still in high school. Focused on a career in music, Lambert graduated early from school to pursue her dream.
Her own family supported her efforts, helping to finance and promote her first recording, an independent self-titled CD, in 2001. Two years later, Lambert got a big break when she passed the auditions for a new country music reality show, Nashville Star. She moved to the country music capital to compete for a recording contract among other prizes. While she didn’t win, Lambert still landed a major label contract with Sony Music after becoming the show’s second runner-up. “I was hoping not to win,” she said in a statement on her website. “The winner had to go in right after the contest and make a record in a couple of weeks, and I wasn’t ready.”
In 2004, Lambert released the single, “Me and Charlie Talking,” an up-tempo tale of puppy love. It was a modest hit and was soon followed by her first major label album, Kerosene (2005). After the album’s release, Lambert went on tours with George Strait and Keith Urban.
Debuting at the top of the country music charts, Kerosene surprised some listeners with its fiery lyrics. “I don’t write about angels, Jesus, happy days, kids. I grew up on drinkin’, cheatin’, love gone bad,” she once explained. Clearly, her songs struck a chord with the music-buying public—the album sold more than 900,000 copies.
Also a hit with critics, Kerosene earned several positive reviews from a variety of sources, from Rolling Stone to the New Yorker magazine. Lambert earned several award nominations from the Academy of Country Music (ACM), including Top New Female Vocalist. The following year, she did win that ACM Award.
In 2007, Lambert had another hit album on her hands. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend started out at the top of the country album charts and reached as high as number six on the Billboard 200 charts. The title track became a popular hit and anthem of sorts for former girlfriends everywhere. “Gunpowder & Lead” tells the story of a woman seeking to kill her abusive significant other. On the other side of spectrum, Lambert appears unusually vulnerable on “More Like Her.” She also reflects on her love of rural life in “Famous in a Small Town.”
Along with being a strong seller, the album has brought Lambert a lot of positive critical attention. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend won an ACM award for Album of the Year, and Lambert earned ACM’s Top New Female Vocalist award. Lambert also received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Female Country Vocal Performance for her single “Kerosene”. At the 2008 ACM Awards, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend won Album of the Year.
In 2009, she released a new album, Revolution. The album has earned Lambert another CMA nomination, this time for Female Vocalist of the year.
When she is not on the road, Lambert still calls Lindale home. She is currently dating country singer Blake Shelton.