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Stephen F. Austin State University

Archie McDonald Speaker Series

2014 Program: Grammy Award-winning singer Lyle Lovett

Lyle Lovett

Lyle Lovett is a Grammy Award-winning singer, composer and actor. He has broadened the definition of Americana music in a career that spans 14 albums and more than four million records sold. Coupled with his gift for storytelling, the Texas-based musician fuses elements of country, swing, jazz, folk, gospel and blues in a manner that defies convention and breaks down barriers.

Lovett has won four Grammy Awards: Best Country Album (1996 for "The Road to Ensenada"); Best Country Duo/Group with Vocal (1994 for "Blues For Dixie" with Asleep at the Wheel); Best Pop Vocal Collaboration (1994 for "Funny How Time Slips Away" with Al Green); and Best Country Male Vocal (1989 for "Lyle Lovett and His Large Band." He received the Americana Music Association's inaugural Trailblazer Award and the Texas Medal of Arts Award, and he was named the 2011 Texas State Musician. Lovett has celebrated more than two decades of acclaimed work and garnered seven top-10 albums on the Billboard charts. Beginning with his 1986 self-titled debut and continuing through his most recent projects, Lovett has taken one artistic chance after another while crafting songs that resonate with fans and critics across the globe.

For the last few years, Lovett has been alternating Large Band tours with acoustic shows teaming him with John Hiatt, as well as larger songwriter circles also featuring long-time friends Hiatt, Guy Clark and Joe Ely.

Lovett has appeared in 13 feature films, which include the Robert Altman-directed movies "The Player" (1992), "Short Cuts" (1993) and "Cookie's Fortune" (1999), and he scored "Dr. T & the Women" (2000). He also has acted in "The Opposite of Sex" (1998), "The New Guy" (2002), "Walk Hard: the Dewey Cox Story" (2007) and, most recently, "When Angels Sing" (2011). Among his television acting credits are "Mad About You," "Dharma & Greg," "Brothers & Sisters" and "Castle." In theatre, he participated in three Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles productions, including "Much Ado About Nothing" (2010) opposite Helen Hunt.

Lovett resides in North Harris County, Texas in the farming community of Klein, named after his great-great-grandfather and where he was raised. Lovett began his music career while attending Texas A&M University in the late '70s, where he graduated with Bachelors' degrees in journalism and German.

Despite the departures to stage, television and screen, Lovett always returns to the music world. His stories and songs remain a powerful reminder that he possesses one of the most distinctive artistic voices today.

About the Archie McDonald Speaker Series

The Archie McDonald Speaker Series was created in 2010 by the SFA College of Liberal and Applied Arts led by Dr. Brian Murphy, dean of the college. The annual event is designed to honor and preserve the legacy of a distinguished scholar, educator and community commentator who brings American culture to the average person. In the tradition of McDonald's writings and oral presentations, the speaker series will host a prominent national figure annually at SFA to discuss contemporary cultural issues-from politics to art. In the process, the national profile of SFA will be enhanced, and the community will be enriched.

Read more about past Archie McDonald Speaker Series events.