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Growing up in a nonmusical family in Phoenix, AZ, country singer Dierks Bentle

Dierks Bentley

y got his country music education on his own, listening to recordings. A love of the music inspired him to move to Nashville at the age of 19, but he quickly grew discouraged by the lack of public and professional interest coming his way. It all changed when he walked into the Station Inn, a bar where the bluegrass faithful hang out. An all-night jam session recharged his batteries and he restarted pursuing gigs. He landed a job at the TNN television network doing research on classic country music and by night he worked on his demos. Capitol Records heard the artist, signed him, and released his self-titled debut, Dierks Bentley, in 2003, which yielded the impossibly catchy single "What Was I Thinkin'". Bringing his love of Merle Haggard and Waylon Jennings more to the forefront, Modern Day Drifter followed two years later and became a Top Ten hit. In 2006 he returned with Long Trip Alone, a more polished effort that was commercial but not crass.

Greatest Hits: Every Mile a Memory arrived in 2008, a bit ethumb|300px|right|Dierks Bentley - Am I The Only Onearly in his career for that, perhaps, but it did contain his key charting singles and added in fan-selected live tracks as a bonus, making it a nice summation of Bentley's work to date. A new album, Feel That Fire, was released in early 2009, followed by Up on the Ridge, a bluegrass flavored collection, in 2010. Although critically well received, Up on the Ridge had only minor chart success.

Some of Bentley's number one hits include songs like: "Come a Little Closer", "Settle for a Slowdown", "Every Mile a Memory", "Free and Easy (Down the Road I Go)", "Feel That Fire", and "Sideways". Bentley's 2011 tour featured Josh Thompson as the opening act.

Bentley's seventh album Home is scheduled for release in early 2012, lead by the single, "Am I the Only One"thumb||

which reached No. 1 on the Billboard Country Singles. The second single off the album is "Home."

Bentley married Cassidy Black on December 17, 2005 in Mexico. They live in Nashville, Tennessee, with their dogs Jake (who has appeared in a few of Dierks' videos) and George. The couple welcomed their first child, Evelyn Day Bentley (nicknamed "Evie"), on October 4, 2008. Their second daughter, Jordan Catherine Bentley, was born December 25, 2010.

In 2004, Dierks won the CMT Breakthrough Video of the Year award, as well as the Academy of Country Music's Top New Artist award. In 2005, he earned the CMA Horizon Award.