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Gretchen Wilson

Gretchen was born in Pocahontas, Illinois to a 16-year-old mother. Her father left before she was two years old, and she and her mother lived in trailer parks and relative poverty. Gretchen’s mother worked as a waitress, and Gretchen herself dropped out of the 8th grade at age 15 to work as a cook and bartender in rural Illinois.

After a failed marriage to former Baywolfe bandmate Larry Rolens, Gretchen moved to Nashville and began dating Mike Penner. They have a daughter, Grace Frances Penner, who was born November 9, 2000.

Gretchen, who had sung for Kmart as a child, sang in two bar bands by the age of 20. In 1996 she moved to Nashville to sing back-up and record sample songs. In 2000, she met John Rich, a former member of Lonestar, who invited her to become his song-writing partner. Wilson signed with Epic Records in 2003 and recorded Here for the Party within the year.

Her first single, “Redneck Woman”, was released in early 2004 and reached the top of the Hot Country Songs charts and #22 on the Billboard Hot 100. The success of “Redneck Woman” prompted an earlier-than-planned release for Here for the Party — May 11, 2004 — and it debuted at #1 on the Billboard country chart. It also reached #2 on the Billboard 200 and Billboard Internet album sales charts. She performed as a support artist for Brooks & Dunn and Montgomery Gentry.


Gretchen Frances Wilson (born June 26, 1973) is an American country music artist. She made her debut in 2004 with the Grammy Award-winning single "Redneck Woman," a number-one hit on the Billboard country charts. The song served as the lead-off single of her debut album, Here for the Party. Wilson followed this album one year later with All Jacked Up, the title track of which became the highest-debuting single for a female country artist upon its 2005 release. A third album, One of the Boys, was released in 2007.

Overall, Wilson has charted 13 singles on the Billboard country charts, of which five have reached Top Ten: the Number One "Redneck Woman", as well as "Here for the Party" (#3, 2004), "When I Think About Cheatin'" (#4, 2004), "Homewrecker" (#2, 2005), and "All Jacked Up" (#8, 2005). The album Here for the Party was certified 5× Multi-Platinum by the RIAA for sales of five million copies, while All Jacked Up was certified platinum. She has sold over 8 million records worldwide.


Gretchen dropped out of school in the eighth grade.
In 2006, Gretchen signed a deal with Warner Books. The title of her book will be I'll Tell You What a Redneck Woman Is.
Gretchen currently lives in Lebanon, TN.
Gretchen started working at Big O's bar beside her mother at the age of 14.
Gretchen performed at the 2006 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota.
Gretchen's first hit, "Redneck Woman," in 2004, reached Billboard's #1 faster than any hit since 1992, when Billy Ray Cyrus' song, "Achy Breaky Heart," climbed to #1.
Gretchen's mother was only 16 when she was born, and her father left the family when she was only 2 years old. When she was 10, she was forced to help raise her baby brother.
Gretchen covered Billie Holiday's song Good Morning, Heartache, as a hidden track on All Jacked Up album. The song was originally written by Billie in 1946.
Gretchen has performed live on the 2006 CMT Music Awards, with the song All Jacked Up. in the 2005's ceremony, she performed with I Don't Feel Like Loving You Today.
Gretchen, before relocating to Nashville, used to sing every night at the local Big O's bars, earning some tips.
Gretchen was nominated for the Video of the Year Award at the April 2006's CMT Music Awards, for the song "All Jacked Up."
Gretchen used to sing with bar bands until her twenties.
Gretchen performed as a support act for Brooks & Dunn, and for Montgomery Gentry, in order to advance her first album Here For The Party.
Singles List:

Album: Here For The Party
1. Redneck Woman (2004).
2. Here for the Party (2004).
3. When I Think About Cheatin (2005).
4. Homewrecker (2005).


Album: All Jacked Up
5. All Jacked Up (2005).
6. I Don't Feel Like Loving You Today (2005).
7. Politically Uncorrect (2006).
8. California Girls (2006).

Gretchen was a member of MuzikMafia, an informal Country group, that was meeting every week, writing and singing altogether. She was added by John Rich, ex-member of Lonestar.
Gretchen is nicknamed "Redneck Woman", after her first hit single, that was #1 on the US Country Chart.
Gretchen's first album, Here For The Party, peaked to #2 on the US Albums Chart, and sold 4.3 million copies, making it Platinum x4.
Gretchen's hit, Politically Uncorrect, features the legendary Merle Haggard, one of Bakersfield sound creators.
Gretchen was awarded Breakthrough Artist of the Year in the 2004's American Music Awards.
Gretchen has a dog called Sanford.
Gretchen tours with a bus called "Bus 27" - 27 is her lucky number, and it's also her age when giving birth to Grace.
She is the 2005 CMA Female Vocalist of the Year.
Gretchen has a daughter named Grace Frances Penner who was born in 2000. The father is Mike Penner.

 

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