A staunch musical traditionalist who wants to bring country music back to its roots, Jamie Richards has won a strong regional following in the Southwest for his songs rich in pedal steel, broken hearts, and plainspoken storytelling. Richards was born in Oklahoma, where his folks ran a dairy farm. Growing up on the farm, Jamie inherited his father's work ethic and his mother's love of music. He learned to sing with his mom, as she played classic gospel songs on the family's piano and he sang along. As he grew older, Richards became a serious country music fan; in time, he began writing songs himself and singing them with a band that played honky tonks across Oklahoma. After eight years working clubs, Richards decided to take a shot at the big time, and he moved to Nashville, Tennessee. He soon found that most Music City record labels were looking for artists with more of a pop sensibility and less of a hard country edge.
While Richards didn't make much of an impression as an artist, his gifts as a songwriter got noticed, and he was signed as a staff songwriter with Curb Records. Jamie's songs enjoyed success as recorded by Hal Ketchum ("That's What You Get for Loving Me"), Ken Mellons ("Believe"), and Kevin Fowler ("Loose, Loud and Crazy"), but after five years in Nashville, Richards was eager to make his mark as an artist. In 2001 Jamie left Nashville for Dallas, where Wes Daily was reviving the D Records label, which first recorded George Jones. Richards and Daily saw eye to eye about country music, and in 2002 D released Richards' first full-length album, No Regrets. The album fared well in Texas and Oklahoma, and two songs from No Regrets became Top Ten singles on the Texas Regional Radio chart.
Arriving in 2004, Between These Lines enjoyed similar success, and Richards became a popular attraction on the Texas music scene, both as a live act and a recording artist. Between 2002 and 2013 (and including the albums Drive, Sideways, and All About the Music), Richards landed 12 singles in the Top Ten of the Texas Regional Radio chart. For 2016's Latest & Greatest, released on Richards' own Okie Ranch Records label, the artist presented five new songs, as well as cutting new versions of some of his most popular tunes to date. ~ Mark Deming