Keith Urban has come a long way in life, from his humble beginnings in New Zealand and Australia to global fame and home among Nashville’s elite superstars. But none of it was certain, and Urban recently admitted he thought it was all over about 15 years ago.
Appearing on SiriusXM’s Exit 209 With Storme Warren podcast back in December, the “One Too Many” (featuring Pink) singer was asked about what he considers the highlights of his life. First Urban listed off a few things fans knew he was thankful for — like meeting and marrying his Hollywood icon wife, Nicole Kidman; welcoming two daughters with her, Sunday Rose and Faith Margaret; getting sober before his big musical break; and finally feeling embraced by the country community after years of hard work.
But he told his host that last one was actually filled with anxiety. It happened so fast, Urban worried that he might flame out as a one hit wonder.
“In 2005, when I was nominated at the CMAs for Male Vocal and Entertainer of the Year in the same year and won them both, it was too overwhelming to me,” Urban explained. “I was terrified that I’d won Entertainer of the Year so soon. Because I thought, well, that’s it, that’s the end of the career. I’ve peaked. And I feel like I’ve got so much more to do. It felt too much too soon.”
That’s obviously not what happened. At that point, Urban was just wrapping up his third album cycle (Be Here), a project which saw five singles reach Number One or Two on Billboard’s Country Airplay radio chart with Gold or Platinum sales status. But he’s gone on to achieve far more success, including at least 13 more Number Ones on that same chart, countless Platinum certifications and awards — and even another round of Entertainer of the Year wins.
In 2018, he was once again named the CMA Entertainer of Year … and also the ACM Entertainer of the Year the year after that. “So the other high point would have been being honored [with] that again, 15 years later. I’m speechless about that,” Urban said.
Hopefully he doesn’t feel like he’s peaked again, because Keith Urban likely has a way to go in his long and distinguished career. He just released the first volume of a bold album in 2020 — The Speed of Now Part 1 — and continues to reign as one of the most visible and celebrated artists in country.