Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Dates of Note in Country Music, May 1-15

Category: News

May 1:

Sonny James born in Hackleburg, Alabama, 1929 (now 79)
Wayne Hancock born in Dallas, Texas, 1965 (now 43)
Tim McGraw born in Delhi, Louisiana, 1967 (now 41)
Sam McGee born in Williamson County, Tennessee, 1894 (died 1975)
Jimmy Gately born in Springfield, Missouri, 1931 (died 1985)
Ott Devine born in Gadsen, Alabama, 1910 (died 1994)
Spike Jones died (emphysema), 1965 (was 53). The novelty band leader recorded with Homer and Jethro, and Red Ingle (of Red Ingle & Natural Seven, of "Temp-Tay-Shun" fame) was once a member of Jones' City Slickers.

May 2:

R.C. Bannon born in Dallas, Texas, 1945 (now 63)
Larry Gatlin born in Seminole, Texas, 1948 (now 60)
Ty Herndon born in Meridian, Mississippi, 1962 (now 46)
Roy Lee Centers of the Clinch Mountain Boys died (shot during a bar fight), 1974 (was 29)

May 3:

Jerry Chestnut born in Harlan County, Kentucky, 1931 (now 77)
Cactus Moser of Highway 101 born in Montrose, Colorado, 1957 (now 51)
Bing Crosby born in Tacoma, Washington, 1903 (died 1977). The pop crooner has the distinction of being the performer of the first #1 single in Billboard magazine's "Hillbilly and Western Singles" history with his rendition of Al Dexter's "Pistol Packin' Mama." Dexter's own recording was the second #1 song.
Dave Dudley born in Spencer, Wisconsin, 1928 (died 2003)
Patsy Montana died (unknown cause), 1996 (was 83)
Dollywood theme park opens in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, 1986

May 4:

Stella Parton born in Sevierville, Tennessee, 1949 (now 59)
Robert Ellis Orrall born in Winthrop, Massachusetts, 1955 (now 53)
Randy Travis born in Marshville, North Carolina, 1959 (now 49)
Al Dexter born in Jacksonville, Texas, 1902 (died 1984)
Bobby Austin born in Wenatchee, Washington, 1933 (died 2002)
Joe L. Frank died (illness), 1952 (was 52)

May 5:

Ace Cannon born in Grenada, Mississippi, 1934 (now 74)
Roni Stoneman born in Washington, DC, 1938 (now 70)
Glen Duncan of Lonesome Standard Time born in Columbus, Indiana, 1955 (now 53)
Tammy Wynette born in Itawamba County, Mississippi, 1942 (died 1998)
J.D. Miller born in Iota, Louisiana, 1922 (died 1996)

May 6:

Jimmie Dale Gilmore born in Austin, Texas, 1945 (now 63)
Cliff Carlisle born in Taylorsville, Kentucky, 1904 (died 1983)

May 7:

Lorie Collins of the Collins Kids born in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, 1942 (now 66)
Riley Puckett born in Alpharetta, Georgia, 1894 (died 1946)
Eddie Rabbitt died (cancer), 1998 (was 56)

May 8:

Homer Bailes of the Bailes Brothers born in Kanawha County, West Virginia, 1922 (now 86)
Jack Blanchard born in Buffalo, New York, 1942 (now 66)
Del Anthony Gray of Little Texas born in Hamilton, Ohio, 1968 (now 40)
Jimmie Tarlton of Darby & Tarlton born in Cheraw, South Carolina, 1892 (died 1979)
Benny Martin born in Sparta, Tennessee, 1928 (died 2001)
Rick Nelson born in Teaneck, New Jersey, 1940 (died 1985)
Leon Huff of the Light Crust Doughboys died (unknown cause), 1952 (was 39)
George D. Hay died (unknown cause), 1968 (was 72)

May 9:

Richie Furay of Poco born in Yellow Springs, Ohio, 1944 (now 64)
Bobby Lewis born in Hodgenville, Kentucky, 1946 (now 62)
Fuzzy Knight born in Fairmont, West Virginia, 1901 (died 1976). The actor appeared in several films as Tex Ritter's sidekick.
Hank Snow born in Halifax, Nova Scotia, 1914 (died 1999)
Nudie Cohen died (unknown cause), 1984 (was 81)
Keith Whitley died (alcohol poisoning), 1989 (was 33)
Jimmie Davis elected governor of Louisiana, 1944

May 10:

Carl T. Sprague born in Houston, Texas, 1895 (died 1979)
Mother Maybelle Carter born in Nicklesville, Virginia, 1909 (died 1979)
Shel Silverstein died (heat attack), 1999 (was 68)

May 11:

Mark Herndon of Alabama born in Springfield, Massachusetts, 1955 (now 53)
Bob Atcher born in West Point, Kentucky, 1914 (died 1993)
Lester Flatt died (heart failure), 1979 (was 64)

May 12:

Kix Brooks born in Shreveport, Louisiana, 1955 (now 53)
The Duke of Paducah, Benjamin "Whitey" Ford, born in DeSoto, Missouri, 1901 (died 1986)
Joe Maphis born in Suffolk, Virginia, 1921 (died 1986)
W. Lee "Pappy" O'Daniel died (unknown cause), 1969 (was 79)

May 13:

Johnnie Wright born in Mt. Juliet, Tennessee, 1914 (now 94)
Ray Kennedy born in Buffalo, New York, 1954 (now 54)
Lari White born in Dunedin, Florida, 1965 (now 43)
Jack Anglin born in Columbia, Tennesee, 1916 (died 1963)
Gid Tanner died (unknown cause), 1960 (was 74)
Bob Wills died (pneumonia/complications of 1973 stroke), 1975 (was 70)

May 15:

Eddy Arnold born in Henderson, Tennessee, 1918 (died 2008)
K.T. Oslin born in Crossett, Arkansas, 1941 (now 67)
June Carter Cash died (complications from open heart surgery), 2003 (was 73)

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

McCready Confirms Affair With Clemens

Category: News

Country singer Mindy McCready has confirmed a New York Daily News story that stated she and baseball pitcher Roger Clemens carried on an affair for over a decade.

McCready said in a statement that she "cannot refute anything in the story" the Daily News broke on April 29. The article claimed that the country singer first met Clemens when she was a 15-year-old singing in a karaoke bar in Florida. The paper also reports that Clemens sent McCready money when the singer's legal woes resulted in her filing for bankruptcy.

Clemens vehemently denied the initial report, which came to light as part of the ongoing defamation suit/feud between the pitcher and his former friend/trainer Brian McNamee. McNamee was the source of information that put Clemens' name in baseball's Mitchell Report as a user of steroids.

ESPN reported the story, with many of the analysts believing this latest revelation will cause Clemens to drop the defamation suit, since the affair can be used to establish "character" flaws against Clemens.

McCready, after years of drug and legal problems including time in jail, is working on a comeback album and a reality show. Clemens, a seven-time Cy Young award-winning pitcher, is currently unsigned by any major league team.

Paul Davis Dies

Category: Obituary

The song "I Go Crazy" is a soft rock/pop staple. It was written and performed by Paul Davis. Davis also wrote (and originally recorded) "Ride 'Em Cowboy," some nine years before Juice Newton had a top 40 hit with the song.

Paul Davis died April 21, just one day after turning 60. He suffered a heart attack in his hometown of Meridian, Mississippi.

Davis had more pop hits than country hits, the biggest being "65 Love Affair." However, he did make the country chart five times, including two #1 hits, "You're Still New to Me" in 1986 and "I Won't Take Less Than Your Love" (with Tanya Tucker and Paul Overstreet) in 1987.

Davis survived a shooting in July, 1986, when a criminal shot him in the stomach outside a hotel. Early in his career, he did shows with Jim Croce just days before Croce's fatal plane crash in 1973. He said in an interview that Croce's death, as well as the death of another rock singer Davis considered a dear friend, Ronnie Van Zant of Lynyrd Skynyrd, kept Davis out of airplanes.

Farewell to Paul Davis, gone at age 60.

Paul Davis' MySpace site

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Dates of Note in Country Music, April 16-30

Category: News

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 35)
Eddie Cochran died (car wreck), 1960 (was 21). The rockabilly pioneer co-wrote "Summertime Blues," which Alan Jackson covered in country.
Dorsey Dixon died (heart attack), 1968 (was 70)
Hank Penny died (heart failure), 1992 (was 73)
Linda McCartney died (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 died (heart attack), 2007 (was 69)

April 18:

Walt Richmond of the Tractors born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, 1947 (now 60)
Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown born in Vinton, Louisiana, 1924 (died 2005)
Your blogger born in Louisville, Kentucky, 19(mumble mumble) (not too old to cut the mustard)

April 19:

Bill Rice born in Datto, Arkansas, 1939 (now 69)
Bobby Russell born in Nashville, Tennessee, 1941 (died 1992)
Gary Brewer born in Louisville, Kentucky, 1965 (now 43)
Earl Bolick of the Blue Sky Boys died (unknown cause), 1998 (was 78)
The "National Barn Dance" debuted on WLS, Chicago, 1924

April 20:

Johnny Tillotson born in Jacksonville, Florida, 1939 (now 69)
Doyle Lawson of the Country Gentlemen and Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver born in Ford Town, Tennessee, 1944 (now 64)
Wade Hayes born in Bethel Acres, Oklahoma, 1969 (now 39)
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 (now 100!)
Paul Davis born in Meridian, Mississippi, 1948 (now 60)
Ira Louvin born in Rainsville, Alabama, 1924 (died 1965)

Carl Belew born in Salina, Oklahoma, 1931 (died 1990)

April 22:

Glen Campbell born in Delight, Arkansas, 1936 (now 71)
Ray Griff born in Vancouver, British Columbia, 1940 (now 68)
Pat Enright of the Nashville Bluegrass Band born in Huntington, Indiana, 1945 (now 63)
Cleve Francis born in Jennings, Louisiana, 1945 (now 61)
Larry Groce born in Dallas, Texas, 1948 (now 60). 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 57)
Heath Wright of Ricochet born in Vian, Oklahoma, 1967 (now 41)
Steve Sholes died (heart attack), 1968 (was 57)
Felice Bryant died (cancer), 2003 (was 77)
Richard Nixon died (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.

April 23:

Roland White of the Nashville Bluegrass Band born in Madawaska, Maine, 1938 (now 70)
Roy Orbison born in Vernon, Texas, 1936 (died 1988)

April 24:

Shirley Boone born in Chicago, Illinois, 1934 (now 74). Pat Boone's wife is also the daughter of legendary country singer Red Foley.
Rebecca Lynn Howard born in Salyersville, Kentucky, 1979 (now 29)
Harry McClintock died (unknown cause), 1957 (was 74). His greatest success would come years after his death when his recording of "Big Rock Candy Mountain" began the film O Brother, Where Art Thou.
Bonnie Owens died (Alzheimer's disease), 2006 (was 73)

April 25:

Larry Robbins of the Johnson Mountain Boys born in Dickerson, Maryland, 1945 (now 63)
Karl Farr of the Sons of the Pioneers 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 75)
Duane Eddy born in Corning, New York, 1938 (now 70)
Fiddlin' Doc Roberts born in Richmond, Kentucky, 1897 (died 1978)
Cecil Null born in East War, West Virginia, 1927 (died 2001)
Tim Spencer of the Sons of the Pioneers died (unknown cause), 1974 (was 65)
Wesley Rose died (unknown cause), 1990 (was 72)

April 27:

Maxine Brown of the Browns born in Campti, Louisiana, 1931 (now 77)
Herb Pedersen of the Dillards and Desert Rose Band born in Berkley, California, 1944 (now 64)
Sydney Nathan, founder of King Records, born in Cincinnati, Ohio, 1903 (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 (car wreck), 1980 (was 30)
Ken Curtis died (natural causes), 1991 (was 74). The Gunsmoke star was also a one-time member of the Sons of the Pioneers.

April 29:

Danny Davis of the Nashville Brass born in Dorchester, Massachusetts, 1925 (now 83)
Billy Mize born in Arkansas City, Kansas, 1929 (now 79)
Duane Allen of the Oak Ridge Boys born in Taylortown, Texas, 1943 (now 65)
Wayne Secrest of Confederate Railroad born in Alton, Illinois, 1950 (now 58)
Karen Brooks born in Dallas, Texas, 1954 (now 54)
Eddie Noack born in Houston, Texas, 1930 (died 1978)

April 30:

Fuzzy Owen born in Conway, Arkansas, 1929 (now 79)
Willie Nelson born in Abbott, Texas, 1933 (now 75)
Darrell McCall born in New Jasper, Ohio, 1940 (now 68)
Robert Earl Reynolds of the Mavericks born in Kansas City, Missouri, 1962 (now 46)
Johnny Horton born in Los Angeles, California, 1930 (died 1960)
Curly Chalker died (natural causes), 1998 (was 66)
WLS airs the final broadcast of the National Barn Dance, 1960, after 36 years on the air.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Saying Farewell to a True Legend

Category: Obituary

As far as I'm aware, Charlton Heston never made a country record. What he did create, however, were memorable roles. His death today at age 84 is a loss to the acting world, and to American culture.

A tribute is in the entertainment blog.