In-depth Biography Bass player and vocalist, Ronnie Dunn (born Ronnie Gene Dunn) joined with Louisiana-born Leon Eric "Kix" Brooks to create the most successful country music duo of the 1990s. Their debut album, Brand New Man, released in 1991, sold more than five million copies, while their first two singles -- "Brand New Man" and "My Next Broken Heart," their first songwriting collaboration, reached the top position on Billboard's country music charts. In addition to 15 additional chart-topping tunes, they've placed 26 songs in the Top Ten. The recipients of "Entertainer of the Year" awards from the Country Music Association (CMA) in 1996 and the Academy of Country Music (ACM) in 1995 and 1996, Brooks & Dunn shared "Duo of the Year" honors from the CMA for eight consecutive years, and from the ACM for seven consecutive years.
The son of a country music enthusiast, Dunn was born in Coleman, Texas, and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Playing in bands since his teens, he briefly studied psychology and theology at Abilene Christian College. Expelled from the school, for "performing in honky-tonks," he continued to attract attention with his Tulsa nightclub performances.
Although Dunn recorded several tunes for Churchill Records in 1983 and 1984, none provided a breakthrough. He fared much better four years later, when an appearance in the Marlboro National Country Music talent contest led to an opportunity to record in Nashville. Brought together with Brooks, who despite writing songs for Crystal Gayle and the Oak Ridge Boys had found little success with his own recordings (by Tim DuBois), Dunn found himself on a gold-laden path that has yet to peak. ~ Craig Harris, Rovi