Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Country Music Hall of Fame 2014 Inductees Announced

Category:  News

The 2014 Country Music Hall of Fame inductees were announced this morning (4/22) in ceremonies held in the rotunda at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville.

As I predicted, the late Hank Cochran was enshrined in the Songwriter category in his first year of eligibility following his death from pancreatic cancer in 2010.  His widow, Suzi, accepted, saying, "I never dreamt it would be me and not Hank standing here.  I'm so proud of Hank, and so thrilled for our family."

The Modern Era inductee is Ronnie Milsap, one of country's stalwarts of the mid-70's to mid-80's.  He had 35 #1 hits over the course of his career, and his video of "Lost in the 50's Tonight" became the first video by a country artist to be played on the rock video channel MTV.

The biggest surprise of the day came in the Veterans Era induction.  Mac Wiseman, a legend in bluegrass music (and one of the first seven inductees into the Bluegrass Hall of Fame, enshrined in 1993) but with practically no straight country career (he had only nine singles on the country charts), was inducted.  In addition to a long career in music that goes back to a stint in Molly O'Day's Cumberland Mountain Folks, Wiseman was the first secretary of the Country Music Association, the governing body that elects the individuals to the Hall of Fame, as well as an executive for the Dot Records label in the 50's and early 60's.  


2014 inductee Mac Wiseman
performing at MerleFest in 1995.
c.2014 K.F. Raizor

I'm especially thrilled for Wiseman, who will be 89 next month.  He is a true gentleman, an incredible entertainer (all he has to do is sit on a stool and sing and you are in the palm of his hand), and his voice (his nickname is "The Voice With a Heart," and for a reason) is unique, distinct, and warm (you never forget a song once you hear Mac sing it!).  

Congratulations to the new inductees.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Glen Campbell Moved to Treatment Facility

Category:  News

Country Music Hall of Fame member Glen Campbell has been moved to a facility that specializes in treatment of individuals with Alzheimer's disease.

Campbell, who will turn 78 on April 22, made his diagnosis of Alzheimer's public in 2011.  He began a series of farewell concert tours, which unfortunately were cut short approximately one year ago when his condition reached the point that he could no longer continue.  Although details haven't been released, it appears that Campbell's health has deteriorated to the point where we have seen him in public for the final time.

Campbell has always been considered a first-rate guitarist, having performed on Beach Boys tours prior to the beginning of his Grammy-winning career.  His Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour show was a summer replacement for the Smothers Brothers' variety show on CBS in 1968 and became a regular series in 1969.  In addition to the four Grammy awards he received in his career he was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Grammy in 2012.

Last year the Alzheimer's Association presented the inaugural "Glen Campbell Courage Award" to Campbell at the 22nd annual "Night At Sardi's" fundraising event.  A film about Campbell's battle with the disease, Glen Campbell...I'll Be Me, will debut on Friday (4/18) at the Nashville Film Festival.

Dates of Note in Country Music, April 16-30

Category: News

(Hall of Fame members in bold on birth/death date, followed by hall[s] of fame in which they are enshrined and the year[s] enshrined.  CM=Country Music; BG=Bluegrass; NS=Nashville Songwriter SG=Southern Gospel)

April 16:

Dusty Springfield born in London, England, 1939 (died 1999). The legendary Rock and Roll Hall of Fame singer hit the country charts in 1962 as part of the Springfields with "Silver Threads and Golden Needles."

April 17:

Craig Anderson of Heartland born in Huntsville, Alabama, 1973 (now 41)
Eddie Cochran died in Bath, England (injuries from an April 16 car wreck), 1960 (was 21). The rockabilly pioneer co-wrote "Summertime Blues," which Alan Jackson covered in country.
Dorsey Dixon died in Plant City, Florida (heart attack), 1968 (was 70)
Hank Penny died in Camarillo, California (heart failure), 1992 (was 73)
Linda McCartney died in Tuscon, Arizona (breast cancer), 1998 (was 56). Linda and husband Sir Paul McCartney's band, Wings, hit the country charts in 1974 with "Sally G."
Glenn Sutton (NS 99) died in Nashville, Tennessee (heart attack), 2007 (was 69)

April 18:

Walt Richmond of the Tractors born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, 1947 (now 67)
Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown born in Vinton, Louisiana, 1924 (died 2005)
Your blogger born in Louisville, Kentucky, 19(?!) (now not so young after all)
Milton Brown died in Fort Worth, Texas (pneumonia resulting from injuries in an April 13 car wreck), 1936 (was 32)

April 19:

Jody Carver (Steel Guitar 04) born in Brooklyn, New York, 1929 (now 85)
Bill Rice (NS 94) born in Datto, Arkansas, 1939 (now 75)
Gary Brewer born in Louisville, Kentucky, 1965 (now 49)
Bobby Russell (NS 94) born in Nashville, Tennessee, 1941 (died 1992)
Earl Bolick of the Blue Sky Boys died in Tucker, Georgia (unknown cause), 1998 (was 78)
Levon Helm died in New York, NY (throat cancer), 2012 (was 71)
The "National Barn Dance" debuted on WLS, Chicago, 1924

April 20:

Johnny Tillotson born in Jacksonville, Florida, 1939 (now 75)
Doyle Lawson (BG 12) born in Ford Town, Tennessee, 1944 (now 70)
Wade Hayes born in Bethel Acres, Oklahoma, 1969 (now 45)
Frank "Hylo" Brown born in River, Kentucky, 1922 (died 2003)
Benny Hill found dead in his London flat (coronary thrombosis), 1992 (was 68). The British comedian's Benny Hill Show featured Boots Randolph's "Yakety Sax" as its theme song.

April 21:

Wade Mainer born in Buncombe, North Carolina, 1907 (died 2011)
Ira Louvin (CM 01, NS 79) born in Section, Alabama, 1924 (died 1965)
Carl Belew born in Salina, Oklahoma, 1931 (died 1990)
Paul Davis (NS 10) born in Meridian, Mississippi, 1948 (died 2008)
Neal Matthews Jr. (CM 01) died in Nashville, Tennessee (heart attack), 2000 (was 70)

April 22:

Glen Campbell (CM 05) born in Delight, Arkansas, 1936 (now 78)
Ray Griff born in Vancouver, British Columbia, 1940 (now 74)
Pat Enright of the Nashville Bluegrass Band born in Huntington, Indiana, 1945 (now 69)
Cleve Francis born in Jennings, Louisiana, 1945 (now 69)
Larry Groce born in Dallas, Texas, 1948 (now 66). The Mountain Stage host had one charted record, 1977's "Junk Food Junkie," which was a minor country hit.
Reuben Gosfield of Asleep at the Wheel born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1951 (now 63)
Heath Wright of Ricochet born in Vian, Oklahoma, 1967 (now 45)
Steve Sholes (CM 67) died in Nashville, Tennessee (heart attack), 1968 (was 57)
Felice Bryant (CM 91, NS 72) died in Nashville, Tennessee (cancer), 2003 (was 77)
Paul Davis (NS 10) died in Meridian, Mississippi (heart attack), 2008 (was 60)
Richard Nixon died in New York, New York (stroke), 1994 (was 81). The former president's political troubles were chronicled in Tom T. Hall's song "Watergate Blues." Nixon also appeared on the Grand Ole Opry during its first night at the Opry House in 1974.
Hazel Dickens died in Washington, DC (pneumonia), 2011 (was 75)

April 23:

Roland White of the Nashville Bluegrass Band born in Madawaska, Maine, 1938 (now 76)
Roy Orbison (NS 87) born in Vernon, Texas, 1936 (died 1988)
Kent Robbins (NS 98) born in Mayfield, Kentucky, 1947 (died 1997)

April 24:

Shirley Boone born in Chicago, Illinois, 1934 (now 80). Pat Boone's wife is also the daughter of Red Foley.
Rebecca Lynn Howard born in Salyersville, Kentucky, 1979 (now 35)
Harry McClintock died in San Francisco, California (unknown cause), 1957 (was 74). His greatest success would come decades after his death when his recording of "Big Rock Candy Mountain" began the film O Brother, Where Art Thou.
Bobby Garrett (Steel Guitar 95) died in Tyler, Texas (cancer), 1999 (was 64)
Bonnie Owens died in Bakersfield, California (Alzheimer's disease), 2006 (was 73)

April 25:

Larry Robbins of the Johnson Mountain Boys born in Dickerson, Maryland, 1945 (now 69)
Karl Farr (CM 80) born in Rochelle, Texas, 1909 (died 1961)
Cliff Bruner born in Texas City, Texas, 1915 (died 2000)
Vassar Clements born in Kinard, South Carolina, 1928 (died 2005)
O.B. McClinton born in Senatobia, Mississippi, 1940 (died 1987)
The musical Big River opened on Broadway, 1985. It won a "Best Musical" Tony for songwriter Roger Miller, making him, to date, the only country performer to ever win a Tony Award.

April 26:

Johnny Mosby born in Fort Smith, Arkansas, 1933 (now 81)
Duane Eddy born in Corning, New York, 1938 (now 76)
Fiddlin' Doc Roberts born in Richmond, Kentucky, 1897 (died 1978)
Cecil Null born in East War, West Virginia, 1927 (died 2001)
Tim Spencer (CM 80) died in Apple Valley, California (long illness), 1974 (was 65)
Wesley Rose (CM 86) died in Nashville, Tennessee (unknown cause), 1990 (was 72)
George Jones (CM 92) died in Nashville, Tennessee (respiratory failure), 2013 (was 81)

April 27:

Maxine Brown of the Browns born in Campti, Louisiana, 1931 (now 83)
Herb Pedersen of the Dillards and Desert Rose Band born in Berkley, California, 1944 (now 69)
Sydney Nathan (BG 06) born in Cincinnati, Ohio, 1904 (died 1968)
Jimmie Skinner born in Blue Lick, Kentucky, 1909 (died 1979)

April 28:

Dale Potter born in Puxico, Missouri, 1929 (died 1996)
Tommy Caldwell of the Marshall Tucker Band died in Spartanburg, South Carolina (injuries from an April 21 car wreck), 1980 (was 30)
Ken Curtis died in Clovis, California (heart attack), 1991 (was 74). The Gunsmoke star was also a one-time member of the Sons of the Pioneers.

April 29:

Billy Mize born in Arkansas City, Kansas, 1929 (now 85)
Duane Allen of the Oak Ridge Boys born in Taylortown, Texas, 1943 (now 71)
Wayne Secrest of Confederate Railroad born in Alton, Illinois, 1950 (now 64)
Karen Brooks born in Dallas, Texas, 1954 (now 60)
Eddie Noack born in Houston, Texas, 1930 (died 1978)
Vern Gosdin died in Nashville, Tennessee (stroke), 2009 (was 74)
Kenny Roberts died in Alton, Massachusetts (natural causes), 2012 (was 85)

April 30:

Fuzzy Owen born in Conway, Arkansas, 1929 (now 85)
Willie Nelson (CM 93, NS 73) born in Abbott, Texas, 1933 (now 81)
Darrell McCall born in New Jasper, Ohio, 1940 (now 74)
Johnny Farina (Steel Guitar 02) born in Brooklyn, New York, 1941 (now 73)
Robert Earl Reynolds of the Mavericks born in Kansas City, Missouri, 1962 (now 52)
Johnny Horton born in Los Angeles, California, 1930 (died 1960)
Curly Chalker (Steel Guitar 85) died in Hendersonville, Tennessee (brain cancer), 1998 (was 66)
WLS airs the final broadcast of the National Barn Dance, 1960, after 36 years on the air.

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Country Obits

Category:  News

It's been a rough week in country music.  We've lost two major players this week, sadly right around their birthdays.

Arthur "Guitar Boogie" Smith:  There were plenty of "Arthur Smith" artists (notably, Fiddlin' Arthur Smith and Arthur Q. Smith), but only one wrote "Dueling Banjos."  Don't think that and "Guitar Boogie" are the only two things that Arthur Smith gave the world, however:  he wrote the gospel classic "The Fourth Man" (most recently covered by Dailey & Vincent on their Cracker Barrel gospel album) and nearly 500 other songs.  Arthur Smith died of natural causes at his home in Charlotte, North Carolina on April 3, two days after turning 93.

George Shuffler:  Bluegrass music's "style" is known as cross-picking, and George Shuffler is one of the men who brought it into the world.  Shuffler played guitar with the Stanley Brothers, then with Ralph Stanley's Clinch Mountain Boys and recorded with the likes of Don Reno.  Shuffler would have turned 89 on April 11.  He died April 7 after some time in poor health.

A couple of relatives have also passed away recently, and they need to be acknowledged as well:

Stella Fulks:  The grandmother of alt-country great Robbie Fulks died in York, Pennsylvania on March 31.  She was 96 years old.

Parker Rector:  Thelma Ernestine "Parker" Rector, the widow of legendary bluegrass mandolin great Red Rector, died March 12 in Knoxville after a bout with cancer.  She was 86.

Remember these families in your thoughts and prayers.

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Dates of Note in Country Music, April 1-15

Category: News


(Hall of Fame members in bold on birth/death date, followed by hall[s] of fame in which they are enshrined and the year[s] enshrined.  CM=Country Music; BG=Bluegrass; NS=Nashville Songwriter SG=Southern Gospel)


April 1:

Arthur "Guitar Boogie" Smith born in Clinton, South Carolina, 1921 (now 93)
Jim Ed Brown born in Sparkman, Arkansas, 1934 (now 80)
Jules Verne Allen born in Waxahachie, Texas, 1883 (died 1945)
Jimmy Logsdon born in Panther, Kentucky, 1922 (died 2001)
Paul Cohen (CM 76) died in Nashville, Tennessee (cancer), 1970 (was 71)
Rachel Veach joined Roy Acuff's Smoky Mountain Boys, 1939. Her presence gave rise to Pete Kirby's nickname "Bashful Brother Oswald:" a woman traveling with a group of men was scandalous, so Kirby was billed as Veach's "bashful brother" to quell any rumors.
The original Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum opened, 1967

April 2:

Warner Mack born in Nashville, Tennessee, 1938 (now 76)
Sonny Throckmorton (NS 87) born in Carlsbad, New Mexico, 1941 (now 73)
Emmylou Harris (CM 08) born in Birmingham, Alabama, 1947 (now 67)
Dean Townson of Pirates of the Mississippi born in Battle Creek, Michigan, 1959 (now 55)
Billy Dean born in Quincy, Florida, 1962 (now 52)
Mose Rager born in Muhlenberg County, Kentucky, 1911 (died 1986). The guitarist was a significant influence on the thumbpicking style of another guitarist from the region, Merle Travis.

Cliff Carlisle died in Lexington, Kentucky (unknown cause), 1983 (was 78)
Former Country Gentleman Doyle Lawson formed Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, 1979

April 3:

Billy Joe Royal born in Valdosta, Georgia, 1942 (now 72)
Richard Thompson born in Notting Hill, London, 1949 (now 65).  The legendary folk-rock singer/songwriter and guitarist wrote and originally recorded "1952 Vincent Black Lightning," later a bluegrass hit for Del McCoury, as well as Jo-El Sonnier's biggest hit, "Tear-Stained Letter" (which was also covered by Faith Hill).
Curtis Stone of Highway 101 (and son of Cliffie Stone) born in North Hollywood, California, 1950 (now 64)
Hank Newman of the Georgia Crackers born in Cochran, Georgia, 1905 (died 1978)
Don Gibson (CM 01, NS 73) born in Shelby, North Carolina, 1928 (died 2003)
Ella Mae Cooley murdered, 1961. Her husband, self-proclaimed "King of Western Swing" Spade Cooley, was convicted of her murder and sentenced to life in prison.
David Keli'i (Steel Guitar 90) died in Honolulu, Hawaii (unknown cause), 1983 (was 68)
Harley "Red" Allen (BG 05) died in Dayton, Ohio (cancer), 1993 (was 63)
Starday Records owner Don Pierce died in Nashville, Tennessee (heart attack), 2005 (was 89)
The 
Louisiana Hayride debuted on KWKH, Shreveport, Louisiana, 1948. Among the artists who performed on the radio show were Elvis Presley, Hank Williams, Claude King, Johnny Horton, and one-time emcee Jim Reeves.

April 4:

Norro Wilson (NS 96) born in Scottsville, Kentucky, 1938 (now 76)
Steve Gatlin of the Gatlin Brothers born in Olney, Texas, 1951 (now 62)
Troy Gentry of Montgomery Gentry born in Lexington, Kentucky, 1967 (now 47)
Cy Coben (ne Cohen)  born in Jersey City, New Jersey, 1919 (died 2006)
Red Sovine died in Nashville, Tennessee (heart attack while driving), 1980 (was 61)

April 5:

Bill Clifton (BG 08) (ne William August Marburg) born in Riverwood, Maryland, 1931 (now 83). In addition to being a bluegrass performer, Clifton is also credited with starting the bluegrass festival, when he organized a July 4, 1961 show in Luray, Virginia.
June Stearns born in Alpha, Kentucky, 1939 (now 75)
Tommy Cash born in Dyess, Arkansas, 1940 (now 74)
Bob McDill (NS 85) born in Beaumont, Texas, 1944 (now 70)
Pat Green born in San Antonio, Texas, 1972 (now 42)

Lewis Phillips of the Lewis Family (BG 06) born in Washington, GA, 1972 (now 42)
Laura Rogers of the Secret Sisters born in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, 1986 (now 28)
Jack Clement (NS 73, CM 13) born in Whitehaven, Tennessee, 1931 (died 2013)
Charlie Collins of Roy Acuff's Smoky Mountain Boys born in Caryville, Tennessee, 1933 (died 2012)
Frenchy "Stoney" Edwards died in Oklahoma (stomach cancer), 1997 (was 67)
Gene Pitney died in Cardiff, Wales (heart disease), 2006 (was 65). In addition to his rock hits, Pitney recorded two albums of duets with George Jones.

April 6:

Merle Haggard (CM 94, NS 77) born in Bakersfield, California, 1937 (now 77) 
Vernon Dalhart (CM 81, NS 70) (ne Marion Try Slaughter) born in Marion County, Texas, 1883 (died 1948)
Dick Kaihue McIntire (Steel Guitar 82) born in Honolulu, Hawaii, 1902 (died 1951)
Wade Ray born in Griffin, Indiana, 1913 (died 1998)
Tammy Wynette (CM 98, NS 09) died in Nashville, Tennessee (heart failure attributed to blood clot), 1998 (was 55)
Grand Ole Opry shows were canceled due to rioting in the wake of Martin Luther King's assassination earlier in the week, 1968

April 7:

Bobby Bare (CM 13) born in Ironton, Ohio, 1935 (now 79)
John Dittrich of Restless Heart born in New York, New York, 1951 (now 63)
Leon "Pappy" Selph born in Houston, Texas, 1914 (died 1999)
Cal Smith born in Gans, Oklahoma, 1932 (died 2013)
Clyde Moody died in Nashville, Tennessee (unknown cause), 1989 (was 73)
Henry Glover died in St. Albans, New York (heart attack), 1991 (was 69)
Jeff Newman (Steel Guitar 99) died in Watertown, Tennessee (plane crash), 2004 (was 62)

April 8:

John Schneider born in Mount Kisco, New York, 1960 (now 54)
Jimmy Osborne born in Winchester, Kentucky, 1923 (died 1957)

April 9:

Margo Smith born in Dayton, Ohio, 1942 (now 72)
Con Hunley born in Fountain City, Tennessee, 1945 (now 69)
Hal Ketchum born in Greenwich, New York, 1953 (now 61)
Mark Roberts of the Red Clay Ramblers born in Wareham, Massachusetts, 1957 (now 57)
Dave Innis of Restless Heart born in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, 1959 (now 55)
Carl Perkins (NS 85) born in Tiptonville, Tennessee, 1932 (died 1998)
Darrell Glenn died in Fort Worth, Texas (cancer), 1990 (was 54)
Mae Boren Axton died in Nashville, Tennessee (natural causes), 1997 (was 82)

April 10:

DeWitt Scott (Steel Guitar 92) born in Amarillo, Texas, 1932 (now 82)
Weldon Myrick (Steel Guitar 97) born in Jayton, Texas, 1938 (now 75)
Fiddlin' Arthur Smith born in Bold Spring, Tennessee, 1898 (died 1971)
Sheb Wooley born in Enick, Oklahoma, 1921 (died 2003)
Former home of Johnny and June Cash destroyed by fire, 2007. Barry Gibb of the Bee Gees owned the house at the time of the fire.  In 2010 the Gatlin Brothers referenced the fire in a song titled "Johnny Cash is Dead and His House Burned Down."

April 11:

Jim Lauderdale born in Troutman, North Carolina, 1957 (now 57)
Harty Taylor of Karl & Harty born in Mount Vernon, Kentucky, 1905 (died 1963)
Millie Good of the Girls of the Golden West born in Mount Carmel, Illinois, 1913 (died 1993)
George Shuffler (BG 11) born in Valdese, North Carolina, 1925 (died 2014)
Eddie Miller died in Nashville, Tennessee (unknown cause), 1977 (was 83). In addition to writing a number of songs, including "I've Loved and Lost Again" which was recorded by Patsy Cline during her stint on Four Star, Miller co-founded the Nashville Songwriters' Association International.
Lighnin' Chance died in Nashville, Tennessee (cancer/Alzheimer's), 2005 (was 79)
Jerry Byrd (Steel Guitar 78) died in Honolulu, Hawaii (complications of Parkinson's disease), 2005 (was 85)

April 12:

Ned Miller born in Raines, Utah, 1925 (now 89)
Ron Elliott (Steel Guitar 09) born in Salisbury, Maryland, 1936 (now 78)
Vince Gill (CM 07, NS 05) born in Norman, Oklahoma, 1957 (now 57)
Ernie Lee born in Berea, Kentucky, 1916 (died 1991)
Judy Lynn born in Boise, Idaho, 1936 (died 2010)
Lewis Crook of the Crook Brothers died in Nashville, Tennessee (natural causes), 1997 (was 87)
Boxcar Willie died in Branson, Missouri (leukemia), 1999 (was 67)

April 13:

Sam Bush born in Bowling Green, Kentucky, 1952 (now 62)
Bob Nolan (CM 80, NS 71) of the Sons of the Pioneers born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, 1908 (died 1980)
Guy Willis of the Willis Brothers died in Nashville, Tennessee (unknown cause), 1981 (was 65)
Johnny Dollar died in Nashville, Tennessee (suicide), 1986 (was 53)

April 14:

Loretta Lynn (CM 88, NS 83) born in Butcher Holler, Kentucky, 1932 (now 82)
Stuart Duncan of the Nashville Bluegrass Band born in Quantico, Virginia, 1964 (now 50)
Vito Pelletteri died in Nashville, Tennessee (complications from a stroke), 1977 (was 87)
Burl Ives died in Anacortes, Washington (throat cancer), 1995 (was 85)

April 15:

Roy Clark (CM 09) born in Meherrin, Virginia, 1933 (now 81)
J.L. Frank (CM 67) born in Limestone County, Alabama, 1900 (died 1952)
Bob Luman born in Nacogdoches, Texas, 1937 (died 1978)
Junior Barnard of Bob Wills' Texas Playboys died (car wreck), 1951 (was 30)
Rose Maddox died in Ashland, Oregon (kidney failure), 1998 (was 72)
Otto Kitsinger died in Nashville, Tennessee (heart attack), 1998 (was 54). Kitsinger was the historian and writer for CMT's Opry Backstage.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Tommy Cash's Granddaughter Murdered

Category:  News

Courtney Cash, the granddaughter of country music singer Tommy Cash, was stabbed to death Wednesday (3/19).

News reports from WSMV in Nashville state that Cash and her boyfriend, William Austin Johnson, were stabbed multiple times by an acquaintance following an altercation at Cash and Johnson's home in Putnam County.  Johnson managed to escape with the couple's 20-month-old daughter, who was unharmed in the attack, and call 911.  When police arrived at the house they found Cash dead, her body placed inside a large wooden box.  The suspect was arrested and charged with first-degree murder.  Johnson is at Vanderbilt Hospital, currently in stable condition.

Tommy Cash, the younger brother of the legendary Johnny Cash, issued the following statement on his Facebook page:

“We ask for your prayers for the Cash family at this time. Courtney and her boyfriend are beloved members of my family and like you we have a lot of questions and emotions that we are beginning to sort through today. We ask for you to respect our privacy and appreciate all the support that the public and media has always offered my family, as we handle the loss of my grand-daughter, pray for the father of my great-grand child and journey through the search for justice on this violent act. We are completely heartbroken. It is a time like this that we are grateful for our faith and trusting the loving guidance of God.”

Courtney Cash was 23.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Dates of Note in Country Music, March 16-31

Category: News

(Hall of Fame members in bold on birth/death date, followed by hall[s] of fame in which they are enshrined and the year enshrined.  CM=Country Music; BG=Bluegrass; NS=Nashville Songwriter; SG=Southern Gospel.)


March 16:

Ray Walker of the Jordanaires (CM 01) born in Centerville, Mississippi, 1934 (now 80)
Jerry Jeff Walker (ne Ronald Clyde Crosby) born in Oneonta, New York, 1942 (now 72)
Ray Benson of Asleep at the Wheel born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1951 (now 63)
Tim O'Brien born in Wheeling, West Virginia, 1954 (now 60)
Stan Thorn of Shenandoah born in Kenosha, Wisconsin, 1959 (now 55)
Ronnie McCoury born in York County, Pennsylvania, 1967 (now 47)
Robert Whitstein born in Colfax, Louisiana, 1944 (died 2001)

Carlton Haney (BG 98) died in Greensboro, North Carolina (stroke), 2011 (was 82)
Plane crash at Otay Mountain near San Diego, California kills Reba McEntire band members Chris Austin, Kirk Capello, Joey Cigainero, Paula Kaye Evans, Terry Jackson, Michael Thomas, and Tony Saputo, 1991

March 17:

Jim Weatherly (NS 06) born in Pontotoc, Mississippi, 1943 (now 71)
Paul Overstreet (NS 03) born in Newton, Mississippi, 1955 (now 59)
Dick Curless born in Fort Fairfield, Maine, 1932 (died 1995)
Hugh Farr (CM 80) died in Casper, Wyoming (unknown causes), 1980 (was 77)
Jimmy Gately died in Madison, Tennessee (unknown causes), 1985 (was 53)
Sammy Pruett died in Birmingham, Alabama (unknown causes), 1988 (was 61)
Terry Stafford died in Amarillo, Texas (liver failure), 1996 (was 55)
Bill Carlisle (CM 02) died in Nashville, Tennessee (natural causes), 2003 (was 94)

Ferlin Husky (CM 10) died in Nashville, Tennessee (congestive heart failure/colon cancer), 2011 (was 85)

March 18:

Billy Armstrong born in Streator, Illinois, 1930 (now 84)
Charley Pride (CM 00) born in Sledge, Mississippi, 1938 (now 76)
Margie Bowes born in Roxboro, North Carolina, 1941 (now 73)
James McMurty born in Fort Worth, Texas, 1962 (now 52)
Smiley Burnette (NS 71) born in Summum, Illinois, 1911 (died 1967)

Dennis Linde (NS 05) born in Abilene, Texas, 1943 (died 2006)
John Phillips of the Mamas and Papas died in Los Angeles, California (heart failure), 2001 (was 65). His solo hit, "Mississippi," was a country hit in 1971.

March 19:

Henry "Friendly Henry" Maddox born in Boaz, Alabama, 1928 (died 1974)
Speck Rhodes died in Nashville, Tennessee (natural causes), 2000 (was 84)
Randall Hylton died in Nashville, Tennessee (brain aneurysm), 2001 (was 55)
Tootsie's Orchid Lounge opened in Nashville, 1960

March 20:

Tommy Hunter born in London, Ontario, 1937 (now 77)
Douglas B. Green (Ranger Doug) of Riders in the Sky born in Great Lakes, Illinois, 1946 (now 68)
Jim Seales of Shenandoah born in Hamilton, Alabama, 1954 (now 60)

Jerry Reed (NS 05) born in Atlanta, Georgia, 1937 (died 2008)
Ralph Mooney (Steel Guitar 83) died in Kennedale, Texas (kidney cancer), 2011 (was 82)

March 21:

Carol Lee Cooper born in West Virginia, 1942 (now 72)
Tommy Hill died in Nashville, Tennessee (liver and heart ailments), 2002 (was 72)

March 22:

Charlie Poole born in Randolph County, North Carolina, 1892 (died 1931)
Hoyle Nix of the West Texas Cowboys born in Azel, Texas, 1918 (died 1985)

Bobby Garrett (Steel Guitar 95) born in Dallas, Texas, 1935 (died 1999)
Uncle Dave Macon (CM 66) died in Murfreesboro, Tennessee (illness), 1952 (was 81)
Stoney Cooper died in Nashville, Tennessee (heart attack), 1977 (was 59)
Carl Perkins injured in automobile accident near Wilmington, Delaware, 1956

March 23:


David Grisman born in Passaic, New Jersey, 1945 (now 69)
Fiddlin' John Carson born in Fannin County, Georgia, 1868 (died 1949)
Jim Anglin born in Franklin, Tennessee, 1913 (died 1987)
Smokey Rogers born in McMinnville, Tennessee, 1917 (died 1993)
J.D. Miller died in Crowley, Louisiana (complications from heart bypass surgery), 1996 (was 73)
James Roy "Pop" Lewis (BG 06) of the Lewis Family died in Lincoln County, Georgia (natural causes), 2004 (was 98)
Cindy Walker (CM 97, NS 70) died in Mexia, Texas (natural causes), 2006 (was 88)

March 24:

Peggy Sue Webb born in Butcher Hollow, Kentucky, 1947 (now 67)
Carson Robison (NS 71) died in Poughkeepsie, New York (unknown causes), 1957 (was 66)
Howard Dixon died in East Rockingham, North Carolina (unknown - possible work accident), 1961 (was 57)

Maggie Cavender (NS 89) died in Nashville, Tennessee (stroke), 1996 (was 77)
Henson Cargill died in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (complications from surgery), 2007 (was 66)

March 25:

Bonnie Guitar born in Seattle, Washington, 1923 (now 91)
Robbie Fulks born in York, Pennsylvania, 1963 (now 51)

Shad Cobb born in Hazelville, Washington, 1973 (now 41)
Natchee the Indian (ne Lester Vernon Storer) born in Peebles, Ohio, 1916 (died 1970)
Hoyt Axton born in Duncan, Oklahoma, 1938 (died 1999)
Jack Kapp died in New York, New York (cerebral hemorrhage), 1949 (was 47)
Buck Owens (CM 96, NS 96) died in Bakersfield, California (heart attack), 2006 (was 76)

March 26:

Bud Isaacs (Steel Guitar 84) born in Bedford, Indiana, 1928 (now 86)
Vicki Lawrence born in Inglewood, California, 1949 (now 65). The Carol Burnett Show actress had one hit, "The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia," which made both the pop and country charts.
Ronnie McDowell born in Fountain Head, Tennessee, 1950 (now 64)
Michael Bonagura of Baillie & the Boys born in Newark, New Jersey, 1953 (now 61)
Dean Dillon (NS 02) born in Lake City, Tennessee, 1955 (now 58)
Charly McClain born in Jackson, Tennessee, 1956 (now 57)
Kenny Chesney born in Lutrell, Tennessee, 1968 (now 46)

Julian Tharpe (Steel Guitar 08) born in Skipperville, Alabama, 1937 (died 1994)

March 27:

Don Warden (Steel Guitar 08) born in Mountain Grove, Missouri, 1929 (now 85)

Bill Callahan of the Callahan Brothers born in Madison County, North Carolina, 1912 (died 2002)
David Rogers born in Houston, Texas, 1936 (died 1993)

March 28:

Roy Dean Webb (BG 09) of the Dillards born in Independence, Missouri, 1937 (now 77)
Charlie McCoy (CM 09) born in Oak Hill, West Virginia, 1941 (now 73)
Reba McEntire (CM 11) born in Chockie, Oklahoma, 1955 (now 59)

Jay Livingston born in McDonald, Pennsylvania, 1915 (died 2001). The pop songwriter's many hits include "Silver Bells," which has been recorded by many country performers.
W.C. Handy (NS 83) died in New York, New York (bronchial pneumonia), 1958 (was 84)
Farrell "Rusty" Draper died in Bellevue, Washington (heart disease/throat cancer), 2003 (was 80)
Glenn Barber died in Gallatin, Tennessee (heart ailment), 2008 (was 73)

Earl Scruggs (CM 85, BG 91, NS 07) died in Nashville, Tennessee (natural causes), 2012 (was 88)

March 29:

Paul Humphrey (BG 09) of the Lonesome Pine Fiddlers born in Wytheville, Virginia, 1935 (now 79)

Brady Seals of Little Texas born in Hamilton, Ohio, 1969 (now 45)
Moon Mullican (NS 76) born in Corrigan, Texas, 1909 (died 1967)
Jerry Byrd born in Lima, Ohio, 1920 (died 2005)
Texas Ruby died in Nashville, Tennessee (house fire), 1963 (was 54)
Opry announcer Hal Durham died in Nashville, Tennessee (unknown cause), 2009 (was 77)

March 30:

Bobby Wright born in Charleston, West Virginia, 1942 (now 72)
Connie Cato born in Carlinville, Illinois, 1955 (now 59)

March 31:

John D. Loudermilk (NS 76) born in Durham, North Carolina, 1934 (now 80)
Greg Martin of the Kentucky Headhunters born in Louisville, Kentucky, 1954 (now 60)
Howdy Forrester born in Vernon, Tennessee, 1922 (died 1987)
Tommy Jackson born in Birmingham, Alabama, 1926 (died 1979)

Hoyt Hawkins (CM 01) of the Jordanaires born in Paducah, Kentucky, 1927 (died 1982)
William O. "Lefty" Frizzell (CM 82, NS 72) born in Corsicana, Texas, 1928 (died 1975)
Anita Carter born in Maces Springs, Virginia, 1933 (died 1999)
Skeets McDonald died in Inglewood, California (heart attack), 1968 (was 52)

Carl Story (BG 07) died in Greer, South Carolina (complications from heart bypass surgery), 1995 (was 78)
Mel McDaniel died in Hendersonville, Tennessee (lung cancer), 2011 (was 68)

Monday, March 03, 2014

The Annual Hall of Fame Plea

Category:  Opinion

March means Hall of Fame ballots are in the hands of the 300 or so CMA and Hall of Fame members who are now deciding who will have their career crowned with induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2014.  

And that means it's time for my annual plea.  As I was like a baseball player in a slump last year (a big 0-fer) the list isn't going to change much this year.

VETERANS ERA:  

Should Induct:  The #1 act on this list isn't going to change until they get inducted.  That's Teddy and Doyle Wilburn.  C'mon, folks, I know these guys ruffled more than a few feathers in their lifetimes, but they are both gone now; and, Webb Pierce had more than his share of people he'd urinated on (or pissed off) in his life but he was eventually forgiven and inducted.  Put the Wilburn Brothers in now.

Also Consider:  Jerry Reed (who should've been inducted before he died); Hank Locklin (ditto); the Maddox Brothers and Rose (sole surviving Maddox Brother Don is now 92 and isn't getting any younger); the Browns; Archie Campbell; Cowboy Copas (see Eddie Stubbs' comment every time he plays a Copas song: "He did much more in country music than just die in a plane crash with Patsy Cline"); the Blue Sky Boys; Al Dexter; Elton Britt; or Johnny Horton.  But honestly, don't consider any of these until Teddy and Doyle Wilburn get inducted.

MODERN ERA:

Should Induct:  Randy Travis.  In fact, if I were a betting person I'd bet the ranch, the farm, and five wheel barrels full of Monopoly money on his induction this year.  Why?  Because of the near-fatal stroke he suffered last year.  There's a rule that takes a person off the ballot for three years once they die to prevent the "sympathy vote;" however, there's no such rule for a serious illness.  Sad to say that I think he'll be inducted because of the life-threatening medical problems he had in 2013; however, having said that, as Garth Brooks said at his induction a couple of years ago, there aren't too many people more deserving than this neo-traditional superstar.

Also Consider:  Keith Whitley; Ricky Skaggs; Ray Stevens; Gene Watson; or Tanya Tucker.

ROTATING CATEGORY (Songwriter):

Should Induct:  Hank Cochran.  It's criminal that he wasn't inducted before he died.  This is his first year of eligibility since his death, and I think the man who wrote everything from "I Fall to Pieces" to "The Chair" should be a shoo-in.

Also Consider:  Rodney Crowell (if you aren't going to induct him as a performer put him in for being the incredible songwriter he is); Guy Clark (he may get a sympathy induction); Jenny Lou Carson (my initial response:  "you mean she's not already in?"); or Curly Putman.

The announcements will happen sometime in the next six to eight weeks.  If the Wilburn Brothers get inducted I'll probably be on CNN:  "Writer arrested for doing back flips off statue in Buddy Killen Circle to celebrate Hall of Fame announcement."


Saturday, March 01, 2014

Dates of Note in Country Music, March 1-15

Category: News

(Hall of Fame members in bold on birth/death date, followed by hall[s] of fame in which they are enshrined and the year[s] enshrined.  CM=Country Music; BG=Bluegrass; NS=Nashville Songwriter SG=Southern Gospel)
March 1:


Janis Oliver of Sweethearts of the Rodeo born in Manhattan Beach, California, 1954 (now 60)
Sara Hickman born in Jacksonville, North Carolina, 1963 (now 51)
Clinton Gregory born in Martinsville, Virginia, 1966 (now 48)
Cliffie Stone (CM 89) born in Stockton, California, 1917 (died 1998)
Pearl Butler died in Nashville, Tennessee (unknown cause), 1988 (was 61)
RCA Victor debuted a new record format -- the 45 RPM, 1949

Johnny Cash and June Carter Smith Nix married in Franklin, Kentucky, 1968
California governor Ronald Reagan issued a full pardon to Merle Haggard, 1972


March 2:


Larry Stewart born in Paducah, Kentucky, 1959 (now 54)

Doc Watson (BG 00) born in Deep Gap, North Carolina, 1923 (died 2012)
Dottie Rambo (NS 07, SG 97) born in Madisonville, Kentucky, 1934 (died 2008)
Lonnie Glosson died in Searcy, Arkansas (natural causes), 2001 (was 93)

March 3:


John Carter Cash born in Madison, Tennessee, 1970 (now 44)
Jimmy Heap born in Taylor, Texas, 1922 (died 1977)
Kyle Bailes died (unknown cause), 1996 (was 80)
Harlan Howard (CM 97, NS 73) died in Nashville, Tennessee (heart attack), 2002 (was 74)
Ernie Ashworth died in Hartsville, Tennessee (heart attack), 2009 (was 80)
Benefit concert for the family of DJ "Cactus" Jack Call held in Kansas City, Missouri, 1963. Among those performing: Roy Acuff, Patsy Cline, Hawkshaw Hawkins, Cowboy Copas, Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper, George Jones, and Billy Walker.

March 4:


Betty Jack Davis born in Corbin, Kentucky, 1932 (died 1953)
John Duffey (BG 96) born in Washington, DC, 1934 (died 1996)
Scotty Stoneman died in Nashville, Tennessee (overdose of prescription medication), 1973 (was 40)
Minnie Pearl (CM 75) died in Nashville, Tennessee (complications from stroke), 1996 (was 83)
Eddie Dean died in Los Angeles, California (emphysema), 1999 (was 91)

March 5:


Raymond Fairchild born in Cherokee, North Carolina, 1939 (now 75)
Jimmy Bryant born in Moultrie, Georgia, 1925 (died 1980)
Patsy Cline (CM 73) died near Camden, Tennessee (plane crash), 1963 (was 30)
Cowboy Copas died 
near Camden, Tennessee (plane crash), 1963 (was 59)
Hawkshaw Hawkins died near Camden, Tennessee (plane crash), 1963 (was 41)
Randy Hughes died near Camden, Tennessee (plane crash), 1963 (was 34). Hughes was Patsy Cline's manager and Cowboy Copas' son-in-law as well as the pilot of the ill-fated plane.
Syd Nathan (BG 06) died in Miami, Florida (heart disease/pneumonia), 1968 (was 63). The Cincinnati record store owner founded King Records in 1943, making it the first all-country music record label in history.
Anna Carter Davis (SG 05), original member of the Chuck Wagon Gang and widow of Jimmie Davis, died in Fort Worth, Texas (complications following a fall), 2004 (was 87)
Elvis Presley honorably discharged from the Army, 1960

March 6:


Red Simpson born in Higley, Arizona, 1934 (now 80)

Skip Ewing born in Red Lands, California, 1964 (now 50)
Cliff Carlisle born in Mount Eden, Kentucky, 1904 (died 1983)
Bob Wills (CM 68, NS 70) born in Turkey, Texas, 1905 (died 1975)
Jean Chapel of the Coon Creek Girls born in Neon, Kentucky, 1925 (died 1995)

Don Stover (BG 02) born in Ameagle, West Virginia, 1928 (died 1996)
Doug Dillard (BG 09) of the Dillards born in East St. Louis, Missouri, 1937 (died 2012)
Elmer "Buddy" Charleton (Steel Guitar 93) born in New Market, Virginia, 1938 (died 2011)
George Jones critically injured in single-vehicle accident, 1999
The siege of the Alamo ended, 1836. Davy Crockett, subject of legendary song, was among those who died during the battle. Johnny Cash would memorialize the fight in his song "Remember the Alamo."

March 7:


Townes Van Zandt born in Fort Worth Texas, 1944 (died 1997)
Jack Anglin died in Nashville, Tennessee (car wreck), 1963 (was 46). Anglin was on his way to Patsy Cline's memorial service at the time of his accident.
Pee Wee King (CM 74, NS 70) died in Louisville, Kentucky (heart attack), 2000 (was 86)

Charlie Lamb died in Nashville, Tennessee (pneumonia), 2012 (was 90)
Claude King died in Shreveport, Louisiana (natural causes), 2013 (was 90)

March 8:


Randy Meisner of Poco and the Eagles born in Scotts Bluff, Nebraska, 1946 (now 68)
Jimmy Dormire of Confederate Railroad born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1960 (now 54)
Johnny Dollar born in Kilgore, Texas, 1933 (died 1986)
Jimmy Stoneman of the Stoneman Family born in Washington, DC, 1937 (died 2002)

Stuart Hamblen (NS 70) died in Santa Monica, California (brain tumor), 1989 (was 80)
Hank Locklin died in Brewton, Alabama (natural causes), 2009 (was 90)

March 9:


Mickey Gilley born in Natchez, Mississippi, 1936 (now 78)
Jimmy Fadden of the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band born in Long Beach, California, 1948 (now 66)

Jerry Byrd (Steel Guitar 78) born in Lima, Ohio, 1920 (died 2005)
Ralph Sloan of the Ralph Sloan Dancers born in Wilson County, Tennessee, 1925 (died 1980)
George Burns died in Beverly Hills, California (cardiac arrest), 1996 (was 100). The legendary comedian and actor had a country hit with "I Wish I Was Eighteen Again."
Chris LeDoux died in Casper, Wyoming (bile duct cancer), 2005 (was 56)
Final Saturday night Grand Ole Opry at the Ryman before the opening of the new Opry House, 1974

March 10:


Ralph Emery (CM 07) born in McEwen, Tennessee, 1933 (now 81)
Norman Blake born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, 1938 (now 76)
Johnnie Allan born in Rayne, Louisiana, 1938 (now 76)
Daryl Singletary born in Wigham, Georgia, 1971 (now 43)
Kenneth "Jethro" Burns (CM 01) born in Conasauga, Tennessee, 1920 (died 1989)
Soul singer James Brown guested on the Grand Ole Opry at the request of Porter Wagoner, 1979

March 11:


Jimmy Fortune (CM 08) born in Williamsburg, Virginia, 1955 (now 59)
W. Lee "Pappy" O'Daniel of the Light Crust Doughboys born in Malta, Ohio, 1890 (died 1969)
Jim Boyd of the Cowboy Ramblers died (unknown cause), 1993 (was 78)

March 12:


Marshall Wilborn of the Johnson Mountain Boys and the Lynn Morris Band born in Austin, Texas, 1952 (now 62)
James Taylor born in Belmont, Massachusetts, 1948 (now 66). The legendary pop/folk superstar wrote "Bartender's Blues" and sang with George Jones on Jones' recording of the tune.

Lew DeWitt (CM 08) born in Roanoke, Virginia, 1938 (died 1990)  
Ralph Sloan died in Nashville, Tennessee (unknown illness), 1980 (was 55)

March 13:


Jan Howard born in West Plains, Missouri, 1930 (now 84)

Liz Anderson born in Roseau, Minnesota, 1930 (died 2011) 
Benny Martin (BG 05) died in Nashville, Tennessee (nerve disorder/illness), 2001 (was 72)

Jack Greene died in Nashville, Tennessee (Alzheimer's disease), 2013 (was 83)
Ezra Carter married Maybelle Addington, 1926

March 14:


Michael Martin Murphy born in Oak Cliff, Texas, 1945 (now 69)
Doc Pomus died in New York, New York (lung cancer), 1991 (was 65)
Dale Potter died in Puxaco, Missouri (cancer), 1996 (was 66)
Tommy Collins (NS 99) died in Ashland City, Tennessee (emphysema), 2000 (was 69)

Bill Bolick of the Blue Sky Boys died in Hickory, North Carolina (natural causes), 2008 (was 90)

March 15:


D.J. Fontana born in Shreveport, Louisiana, 1931 (now 83)

Wayland Holyfield (NS 92) born in Malletttown, Arkansas, 1942 (now 72)
Gunilla Hutton of Hee Haw born in Goteborg, Sweden, 1946 (now 68)
Ry Cooder born in Los Angeles, California, 1947 (now 67)
Carl Smith (CM 03) born in Maynardville, Tennessee, 1927 (died 2010)
The final performance of the Friday Night Opry at the Ryman, 1974. The final song was the Opry cast singing "Will the Circle Be Unbroken."

Thursday, February 27, 2014

"I'm Qualified to Teach Grammar to Your Children"

Category:  Tribute/Obituary

This is one of the hardest things I've ever had to post. 

Tim Wilson, the country comedian best known for his southern humor and songs "Jeff Gordon's Gay" and "But I Could Be Wrong," has died.  Wilson died of a heart attack in Nashville yesterday (2/26).

I first heard of Tim Wilson when someone, knowing my opinion of the most popular person in country music at the time, sent me a sound wav of "Garth Brooks Has Ruined My Life."  I went to see him in Louisville and was hooked immediately.  I bought all his cassettes, including "Tough Crowd," the one that featured "Garth Brooks Has Ruined My Life."  He signed it, "Yours in Garth hatingdom, Tim Wilson."

From that time in 1992 until last November, when I went to Nashville to see him at Zanie's, I didn't miss Tim's shows.

Timothy Collins Wilson was born August 5, 1961 in Columbus, Georgia ("the entertainment capital of the world, Columbus, Georgia!" Wilson would announce in the early days, then add, "Thank you, keep your seats!").  The son of two educators ("My dad was the assistant principal of a junior high school for 25 years....he whipped the preacher and three of the pallbearers at his funeral"), the "southern" was legitimate, if slightly exaggerated:  Wilson had a degree in English ("I'm qualified to teach grammar to your children") and was well-versed despite what you saw on stage.

That was reflected in one of his proudest accomplishments:  his book.  Happy New Year, Ted:  Theodore Bundy and the Columbus Stocking Stranglings, co-written with Roger Keiss, was Wilson's crusade, of sorts, to prove that a series of unsolved murders in his hometown were committed by notorious mass murderer Ted Bundy.  He was very passionate about the subject (frequently spending more time talking about the cases than his own comedy or music to fans after shows).  If you read the book you may come away with the same conclusion Wilson did:  Bundy did commit those murders.

Wilson was also a record producer.  He worked with the likes of Gregg Allman and Levon Helm on the underrated All-Night All Stars album, an album of covers that Wilson did after utilizing some of the musicians one another album. 

Over the years I saw Wilson nearly 80 times.  He once said from the stage he was confident that I could get up and do his entire routine from memory (which is probably true).  When he picked up the guitar to "sing you some stupid shit," as he put it, he'd always ask, "How many of you like country music?"  After the applause he would add, "Well, if you don't, you'd better start liking it, 'cause it's all I can play."  Our common bond was country music, and we spent many hours discussing the good, the bad, and the ugly (he had a song that I used in my ICMC presentation last year that proclaimed, "I like country better back when it was ugly") in the world of country music.  He'd tell people, on stage and off, that I know "more about country music than anybody."  (Tim really needed to get out more often.) 

The last two songs on that All-Night All Stars album are the traditional hymn, "Softly and Tenderly," and an instrumental by Jimmy Hall titled, "'Til We Meet Again."  Two fitting songs to play for the loss of a good musician, funny, funny man....and a dear friend.

Farewell, Tim.  I will miss you terribly.

Tim Wilson was 52.

****UPDATE****

According to news reports from Columbus, Georgia outlets Wilson died in his hometown, not in Nashville.  The reports state that he had suffered a heart attack and was taken to St. Francis hospital, where his aorta ruptured, killing him.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Dates of Note in Country Music, February 16-28

Category: News

(Hall of Fame members in bold on birth/death date, followed by hall[s] of fame in which they are enshrined and the year enshrined.  CM=Country Music; BG=Bluegrass; NS=Nashville Songwriter; SG=Southern Gospel)

February 16:

Jo-Walker Meador (CM 95) born in Orlinda, Tennessee, 1924 (now 90)
Ronnie Milsap born in Robbinsville, North Carolina, 1944 (now 70)
Jimmy Wakely born in Mineola, Arkansas, 1914 (died 1982)
Smiley Burnette (NS 71) died in Encino, California (leukemia), 1967 (was 55)

February 17:

Johnny Bush born in Houston, Texas, 1935 (now 79)
Buck Trent born in Spartanburg, South Carolina, 1938 (now 76)
Jon Randall born in Dallas, Texas, 1969 (now 45)
Bryan White born in Shellman, Georgia, 1974 (now 40)
Billy Byrd born in Nashville, Tennessee, 1920 (died 2001)
Gene Pitney born in Hartford, Connecticut, 1940 (died 2006). The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer recorded two albums of duets with George Jones.
Uncle Jimmy Thompson died in Laguardo, Tennessee (natural causes), 1931 (was 82)
Eck Robertson died in Borger, Texas (natural causes), 1975 (was 87)
Gus Hardin died near Claremore, Oklahoma (car wreck), 1996 (was 50)

February 18:

Juice Newton born in Lakehurst Naval Station, New Jersey, 1952 (now 62)
Dudley Connell born in Scheer, West Virginia, 1956 (now 58)
Julius Frank "Pee Wee" King (ne Kuczynski) (CM 74, NS 70) born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 1914 (died 2000)
Tootsie Bess, owner of Tootsie's Orchid Lounge, died in Nashville, Tennessee (cancer), 1978 (was 61)
Johnny Paycheck died in Nashville, Tennessee (emphysema), 2003 (was 64)

February 19:

Lorianne Crook born in Wichita, Kansas, 1957 (now 57)
Cedric Rainwater (real name: Howard Watts) (BG 07) born in Monticello, Florida, 1913 (died 1970)
Lowell Blanchard died in Knoxville, Tennessee (heart attack), 1968 (was 57)
Grandpa Jones (CM 78) died in Nashville, Tennessee (stroke), 1998 (was 84)
Porter Wagoner and Dolly Parton officially break up their act, 1974

February 20:

Kathie Baillie of Baillie & the Boys born in Morristown, New Jersey, 1951 (now 63)
Claire Lynch born in Albany, New York, 1954 (now 60)

February 21:

Mary-Chapin Carpenter born in Princeton, New Jersey, 1958 (now 56)
Don Reno (BG 92) born in Spartanburg, South Carolina, 1926 (died 1984)
Carl T. Sprague died in Bryan, Texas (unknown cause), 1979 (was 83)

Ray Whitley (NS 81) died in California (unknown cause), 1979 (was 77)

February 22:

Del Wood born in Nashville, Tennessee, 1920 (died 1989)
George Younce of the Cathedrals (SG 98) born in Patterson, North Carolina, 1930 (died 2005)
Johnny Cash asked June Carter to marry him onstage during a concert in London, Ontario, 1968

February 23:

Rusty Young of Poco born in Long Beach, California, 1946 (now 68)
Buck Griffin born in Corsicana, Texas, 1923 (died 2009)
Minnie Pearl married Henry Cannon, 1947

February 24:

Little Roy Lewis of the Lewis Family (BG 06) born in Lincoln County, Georgia, 1942 (now 72)
Don Law (CM 01) born in London, England, 1902 (died 1982)
Webb Pierce (CM 01) died in Nashville, Tennessee (cancer), 1991 (was 69)
Goldie Hill Smith died in Nashville, Tennessee (cancer), 2005 (was 72)
Dinah Shore died in Beverly Hills, California (ovarian cancer), 1994 (was 77). The legendary pop singer and TV hostess was part of the family of live performers on WSM radio.

February 25:

Dr. Ralph Stanley (BG 92) born in Stratton, Virginia, 1927 (now 87)
Faron Young (CM 00) born in Shreveport, Louisiana, 1932 (died 1996)

February 26:

Jan Crutchfield born in Paducah, Kentucky, 1936 (now 78)
Billy Jack Wills born in Hall County, Texas, 1926 (died 1991)
Johnny Cash (CM 80, NS 77) born in Kingsland, Arkansas, 1932 (died 2003)

February 27:

Chuck Glaser of the Glaser Brothers born in Spalding, Nebraska, 1936 (now 78)
Joe Carson died in Wichita Falls, Texas (car wreck), 1964 (was 27)
Walter Bailes died in Sevierville, Tennessee (various health problems), 2000 (was 80)

February 28:

Jim Denny (CM 66) born in Silver Point, Tennessee, 1911 (died 1963)
Audrey Williams born in Banks, Alabama, 1923 (died 1975)
Don Helms born in New Brockton, Alabama, 1927 (died 2008)
Joe South (NS 79) born in Atlanta, Georgia, 1940 (died 2012)
Fiddlin' Arthur Smith died (unknown causes), 1971 (was 72)

Leap day, February 29:

Dinah Shore born in Winchester, Tennessee, 1916 (died 1994)
Vaughn Horton (NS 71) died in New Port Ritchey, Florida (heart attack), 1988 (was 76)