buckowens.com/Kevin Winter, WireImage via rollingstone.com
The country music community lost a legend on March 25, 2006.
Buck Owens did so much for country music in his decades-long career. He is credited as one of the few who pioneered the “Bakersfield sound,” which is a combination of rock and classic country.
Owens had 21 number one hits with his band The Buckaroos and hosted the TV series Hee Haw with Roy Clark from 1969-1986. In 1974, Owens’ best friend, Don Rich, passed away and it devastated Owens. He abruptly halted his career, until he began performing with Dwight Yoakam.
Yoakam and Owens teamed up for their duet “Streets of Bakersfield,” which gave Owens his first number one in 16 years and Yoakam’s first number one ever!
Sadly, the country legend passed away of a heart attack in 2006, just hours after he performed at his Crystal Palace Restaurant in Bakersfield, California.
Owens’ music meant so much to Yoakam that he released an entire album dedicated to Buck Owens titled Dwight Sings Buck in 2007.
Yoakam also gave a moving eulogy and performance at Owens’ funeral. He apologized for wearing his cowboy hat in church, but joked that Owens would want it that way. Yoakam continued to tell an incredible story about Owens and sing the hymn “I Come To The Garden Alone.”
Watch his moving tribute below.