JOHN MICHAEL MONTGOMERY FACTS:
Hometown: Danville, Kentucky
Albums: Life's a Dance (1992); Kickin' It Up (1994); John Michael Montgomery (1995); What I Do the Best (1996); Leave a Mark (1998); Home to You (1999); Brand New Me (2000); Pictures (2002); Letters from Home (2004); Time Flies (2008)
Hits: "I Love the Way You Love Me," "I Swear," "Be My Baby Tonight," "If You've Got Love," "I Can Love You Like That," "The Little Girl," "Letters from Home"
Other: R&B versions of "I Swear" and "I Can Love You Like That" were released by the group All-4-One.
With some of the most popular country hits of the 1990s, John Michael Montgomery has certainly earned his place among legends of the genre. Coming out of the heart of Kentucky, its no wonder Montgomery has country music flowing through his veins, and with a career approaching 20 years, he shows no signs of slowing down.
Montgomery began his career playing small venues for years before he was discovered by recording executives, and it did not take long for him to make a splash in country once he was given the opportunity. His first album, Life's a Dance, was released in 1992 and was an immediate success. The single "I Love the Way You Love Me" was one of the most popular country hits of the year, and even had a respectable showing on the pop charts as well. The album's title track was also popular, and peaked at number four on the country charts.
Fresh off the success of his debut, Montgomery's popularity only grew after the release of his sophomore album, Kickin' It Up. The record entered the Billboard 200 chart at number one, and once again featured a slew of popular hits. Most notably, the single "I Swear" topped the country charts and was a hit several years later when it was covered by the R&B group All-4-One. The album also featured a pair of other number one hits, "Be My Baby Tonight" and "If You've Got Love."
Throughout the rest of the '90s, Montgomery continued to be one of the top selling country artists in the U.S. In 1998, he began to move more toward a pop sound, and released Leave a Mark. The album once again featured a number of popular hits, including the single "Hold on to Me," which broke into the top 40 on the pop charts.
As Montgomery entered the new decade, his production decreased but his popularity has not. His 2004 album Letters from Home was once again a crossover hit and the song "Cool" and "Goes Good With Beer." Most recently, Montgomery released Time Flies in 2008, which marked a return to form with a more country-oriented sound, and the song "Forever" was a favorite among fans.