- Toby Keith is a highly celebrated country icon.
- He is married to Tricia Lucus.
- Toby is a father of three and grandfather of four.
Toby Keith, 61, is nothing short of a country music legend. From his eponymous debut album in 1993 to his efforts as a music producer and beyond, he’s been a household name for decades. The Arkansas native boasts an impressive array of awards over his career, including CMA Male Vocalist of the Year (2001), Academy Of Country Music’s Entertainer of the Year (2002-2003,) and American Music Award’s Favorite Country Male Artist (2004 & 2006.)
He dipped his toe into the movie industry with starring roles in 2005’s Broken Bridges and 2008’s Beer for My Horses, which he also wrote. As an entrepreneur, his enterprises include a chain of restaurants called Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill, a line of clothing called TK Steelman, and a drink called “Wild Shot.” All of these efforts, including his own record label, Show Dog-Universal, have helped make him one of the wealthiest celebrities in the country.
Toby has also courted political controversy, facing off with the Dixie Chicks over his conservative anthem “Courtesy of the Red, White, & Blue” and backing up former President Donald Trump by performing at pre-Inaugural event “Make America Great Again! Welcome Celebration” in January of 2017.
Backstage and behind the scenes, Toby has relied on his wife of 39 years, Tricia Lucus, for support and companionship. Amid his stomach cancer battle, he will receive the Country Icon Award at the People’s Choice Country Awards on September 28, 20203. Ahead of the ceremony, he spoke out about how he currently feels.
“I feel pretty good,” he told E! News. “It’s a little bit of a roller coaster. You get good days and, you know, you’re up and down, up and gown. It’s always zero to 60 and 60 to zero but I feel good today.”
As Toby receives a milestone honor, here’s everything to know about his marriage to Tricia, from their longtime union to their children and beyond.
Toby Keith’s wife
Toby and Tricia married on March 24, 1984, after dating for three years. Per The U.S. Sun, they dated for three years before tying the knot, and initially met at an Oklahoma nightclub. Tricia brought a daughter to the marriage — Shelley Covel Rowland, born 1980, whom he adopted right away.
In a 2001 interview, she shared what practical romance with Toby is like. “Most people think he is just the most romantic person on the planet,” she told PEOPLE. “He has his moments of charm. It is nice to get a bouquet of flowers, but I’ve told him, ‘Save the money. Roses die in five to seven days. Buy me an outfit or take me to dinner.’”
Tricia has avoided the glare of the spotlight alongside her famous husband, but after 39 years together, it’s safe to say they have a solid union. On March 24, 2023, Toby’s official Instagram account shared an exceptionally rare throwback pic of the couple to mark their 39th anniversary. In the black and white pic, which appeared to have been taken in the 1990s, Toby rocked long, curly hair and a tuxedo, while Tricia wore a gorgeous velvet evening gown.
“Happy anniversary to Toby and Tricia!” the caption read. “Show them some love in the comments.”
Do Toby & Tricia Have Kids?
Yes! In addition to Shelly, now 42, Toby and Trica welcomed daughter Krystal, (“Krystal Keith“) LaDawn Covel Sandubrae on September 30, 1985, and son Stelen Keith Covel, in 1997. As it happens, Krystal, now 37, is also a musician, and signed with her dad’s Show Dog label back in 2013. Stelen, now 26, heads up concert booking company Nostalgic Nights. As their children are all grown, Toby and Tricia are also grandparents of four.
In a Thanksgiving 2019 post, the singer/songwriter posed with his entire family. “Happy Thanksgiving. There sure is a lot to be thankful for. -T,” he captioned the rare family photo.
Tricia is supportive
In the 2001 interview with PEOPLE magazine, Tricia shared what initially drew her to the future star. “He was just one of those larger-than-life guys, full of confidence,” she told the outlet in rare comments at the time.
Toby once told Country Weekly how he admired her standing by him, despite their early struggles. “Dozens of people told Tricia, ‘You need to go tell your old man to get a real job. It took a strong-hearted and loving woman to say, ‘He’s good enough at music that I’ve got to let him try. And it’ll be a great shot for both of us if he can make it work.’”
“He’d say, ‘Trish, one of these days, my time is coming. Hang in there,’” Trish told PEOPLE. Obviously, he delivered on the promise. And when Keith was diagnosed with stomach cancer in 2022, she continued to stand by him, as their marriage marches on to 40 years strong.