Toby Keith: My Proudest Moments

Toby takes a look back at some of his career milestones.

In our exclusive interview in the May 25 issue of Country Weekly, Toby Keith takes a candid look back at the milestones that have defined his superstar career. Toby declares that he has exceeded his wildest aspirations. “I never dreamed I’d dine at the White House or be there several times. I never dreamed that I’d be doing movies,” he tells Country Weekly. Toby also recalls his first No. 1 hit, “Should’ve Been a Cowboy,” along with his biggest and boldest career move. And for his final goal, Toby simply sums up, “Keep it going just like it is.” Below are a few online-only outtakes from that interview.

On the Value of Awards

“Any of the awards from the major awards shows that I’ve won, I don’t even display them at my house. The ones that I won way back when, they mean very little to me because there’s no criteria to get them. Your label just has to have the most votes. The exception of the rules is the CMT Music Awards. I’ve got more wins at the CMT awards than anybody, but a lot of that is fan-voted.”

On Critics

“I heard [rock singer and TV personality] Henry Rollins do this big quote about coming across the table on a critic and satisfying his wife and drinking soup from his cranium and I thought, ‘Here’s a guy who feels about critics the same way I do.’ Well I happened to be [watching TV] one night and I come upon this show called The Henry Rollins Show on one of the small cable networks [IFC]. I just happened to click on it to see what he was doing, and just five minutes after I’m watching he said, ‘When we get back, an open letter to Toby Keith.’ He comes back and critiques my song ‘Get Drunk and Be Somebody’ and in the middle of it this guy, who’s supposed to be a no-nonsense, stand-up kind of guy, goes, ‘Hey, I’m not asking for an ass-whipping here . . . ’ Talk about a hypocrite! I see those kinds of things on a daily basis. You just sit back and scratch your head. I will not come out of the box on somebody, especially that I don’t know, and critique their music. That’s not right and I won’t do it. We don’t bring a bunch of hate to the table.”

On Songwriting

“My dream was to go play music and write my songs. If my career went away tomorrow, all these songs that I’m writing would go to my daughter or to some other person that was thinking about singing and I would funnel them through that way. I’ll never quit writing. I know how to write a song, and there’s no one who could take that away from me. If someone else doesn’t like what you do or they don’t think that you’re a great writer, none of that [matters]. It’s not up to us, it’s up to the public, so it doesn’t matter who writes what. It ends up being in the fan’s hands anyway.”

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