|JOHN MICHAEL MONTGOMERY - BIOGRAPHY||
Even though his music leaned closer to pop music than most honky tonkers, John Michael Montgomery was at the forefront of the new traditionalists movement in the early '90s. Montgomery was born in Danville, Kentucky, to a guitar-playing father and a mother who played the drums, and made his debut at age five during one of his parents' concerts. He began playing in local bands at age 15, and when his parents divorced two years later, he began playing in a group with his father and brother. He first gained notice while playing at the Austin City Saloon in Lexington, Kentucky. By 1991, he had signed with Atlantic Records. Montgomery's debut, Life's a Dance, was released in 1992 to positive reviews and strong sales, climbing into the Top Five on the country album charts and the Top 30 on the pop album charts. It produced several hits, including the title cut and "I Love the Way You Love Me," which became a number one country and a moderate pop hit as well. His second album, Kickin' It Up, came out in 1994 and contained the chart-topper "I Swear," which remained number one for over a month. The album reached number one within a month of its release; it quickly went multi-platinum as well. In the spring of 1995, he released his eponymous third album. What I Do Best was released in late 1996, and was followed two years later by Leave a Mark, which sustained his popularity.
Montgomery's sixth album, Home to You, was released in the spring of 1999. -- Sandra Brennan