Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Dates of Note in Country Music, July 1-15

Country Music Hall of Famers in bold

July 1:
John Lair born in Livingston, Kentucky, 1894 (died 1985). Lair, a one-time announcer on the WLS National Barn Dance, founded the Renfro Valley Barn Dance in Mt. Vernon, Kentucky in 1939.
Keith Whitley born in Sandy Hook, Kentucky, 1955 (died 1989)

July 2:
Marvin Rainwater born in Wichita, Kansas, 1925 (now 85)
Fred Maddox of the Maddox Brothers born in Boaz, Alabama, 1919 (died 1992)
Ken Curtis (one-time member of Sons of the Pioneers as well as Gunsmoke actor) born in Lamar, Colorado, 1916 (died 1991)
DeFord Bailey died (natural causes), 1982 (was 82)
Jim Reeves' final RCA recording session, 1964

July 3:
Johnny Lee born in Texas City, Texas, 1946 (now 64)
Aaron Tippin born in Pensacola, Florida, 1958 (now 52)
Johnny Russell died (complications of diabetes), 2001 (was 61)
Homer L. "Boots" Randolph died (subdural hematoma), 2007 (was 80)

July 4:
Ray Pillow born in Lynchburg, Virginia, 1937 (now 73)
Charlie Monroe born in Rosine, Kentucky, 1903 (died 1975)
Marion Worth born in Birmingham, Alabama, 1930 (died 1999)
Big Al Downing died (leukemia), 2005 (was 65)

July 5:
James "Guy" Willis of the Willis Brothers born in Alex, Arkansas, 1915 (died 1981)
The Grand Ole Opry's first show at the War Memorial Auditorium, 1939

July 6:
Jeannie Seely born in Titusville, Pennsylvania, 1940 (now 70)
Nancy Griffith born in Austin, Texas, 1953 (now 57)
Roy Rogers died (heart failure), 1998 (was 86)

July 7:
Charlie Louvin born in Rainsville, Alabama, 1927 (now 83)
John "Lonzo" Sullivan born in Edmonton, Kentucky, 1917 (died 1967)
Doyle Wilburn born in Hardy, Arkansas, 1930 (died 1982)
George Morgan died (complications of heart bypass surgery), 1975 (was 50)

July 8:
Toby Keith born in Clinton, Oklahoma, 1961 (now 49)
Louis Jordan (a jazz artist who had two country #1 hits in 1944) born in Brinkley, Arkansas, 1908 (died 1975)
Ervin Rouse died (complications from diabetes), 1981 (was 64)
Marty Stuart and Connie Smith married, 1997

July 9:
Jesse McReynolds born in Coeburn, Virginia, 1929 (now 82)
David Ball born in Rock Hill, South Carolina, 1953 (now 57)
Eddie Dean born in Posey, Texas, 1907 (died 1999)
Molly O'Day born in Pike County, Kentucky, 1923 (died 1987)
The Country Music Association announced the largest Country Music Hall of Fame induction class ever -- a total of 12 inductees (Bill Anderson, Delmore Brothers, Everly Brothers, Don Gibson, Homer & Jethro, Waylon Jennings, Jordanaires, Don Law, Louvin Brothers, Ken Nelson, Webb Pierce, and Sam Phillips) -- to coincide with the opening of the new Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, 2001

July 10:
Randall E. "Hawk" Shaw Wilson of BR5-49 born in Topeka, Kansas, 1960 (now 50)

July 11:
Jeff Hanna of the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band born in Detroit, Michigan, 1947 (now 63)

July 12:
Steve Young born in Newman, Georgia, 1942 (now 68)
Jimmie Driftwood died (heart attack), 1998 (was 91)

July 13:
Louise Mandrell of the Mandrell Sisters born in Corpus Christi, Texas, 1954 (now 56)
Rhonda Vincent born in Kirksville, Missouri, 1962 (now 48)
Bradley Kincaid born in Level, Kentucky, 1895 (died 1989)
Tim Spencer born in Webb City, Missouri, 1908 (died 1974)
Riley Puckett died (blood poisoning), 1946 (was 62)

July 14:
Woody Guthrie born in Okemah, Oklahoma, 1912 (died 1967)
Marijohn Wilkin born in Kemp, Texas, 1920 (died 2006)
Del Reeves born in Sparta, North Carolina, 1933 (died 2007)

July 15:
Johnny Sea born in Gulfport, Mississippi, 1940 (now 69)
Linda Ronstadt born in Tucson, Arizona, 1946 (now 64)
Lloyd "Cowboy" Copas born in Adams County, Ohio, 1913 (died 1963)

Monday, June 14, 2010

Dates of Note in Country Music, June 16-30

Category: News

Country Music Hall of Famers in bold

June 16:

Billy "Crash" Craddock born in Greensboro, North Carolina, 1946 (now 64)
Bob Nolan of the Sons of the Pioneers died (heart attack), 1980 (was 72)
"Orange Blossom Special" recorded by the Rouse Brothers, 1939. Ervin Rouse co-wrote the legendary fiddle tune with Chubby Wise.

June 17:

Clyde "Red" Foley born in Blue Lick, Kentucky, 1910 (died 1968)
Dave Akeman (Stringbean) born in Annville, Kentucky, 1916 (died 1973)
Minnie Pearl suffered a stroke that ended her career, 1991
Ground breaking ceremonies held for the new Country Music Hall of Fame, 1999. Your blogger was a member of the "All-Guitar Marching Band," fronted by Chet Atkins, that led the Hall of Fame members to the grounds.

June 18:

Sir Paul McCartney born in Liverpool, England, 1942 (now 68). The legendary Beatle hit the country chart in 1974 with "Sally G." He was also introduced to a Friday Night Opry audience in 1974 by Roy Acuff, where McCartney proclaimed Nashville the "music capital of the universe."
Marty Haggard born in Bakersfield, California, 1958 (now 52)
Blake Shelton born in Ada, Oklahoma, 1976 (now 34)
Zeke Turner born in Lynchburg, Virginia, 1923 (died 2003)
Henry Maddox of the Maddox Brothers & Rose died (heart disease), 1974 (was 46)
A.P. Carter married Sara Dougherty, 1915

June 19:

Doug Stone born in Marietta, Georgia, 1956 (now 54)
Howard Dixon of the Dixon Brothers born in Darlington, South Carolina, 1903 (died 1951)
Lester Flatt born in Sparta, Tennessee, 1914 (died 1979)
Pat Buttram born in Addison, Alabama, 1915 (died 1994)
Bobby Helms died (emphysema), 1997 (was 63)

June 20:

Anne Murray born in Springhill, Nova Scotia, 1945 (now 65)
Evelyn Mae Cox of the Cox Family born in Springhill, Louisiana, 1959 (now 51)
Jimmie Driftwood born in Mountain View, Arkansas, 1907 (died 1998)
T. Texas Tyler born in Mena, Arkansas, 1916 (died 1972)
Chet Atkins born in Luttrell, Tennessee, 1924 (died 2001)
Ira Louvin died (car wreck), 1965 (was 41)
Whitey Ford, the "Duke of Paducah," died (cancer), 1986 (was 85)

June 21:

Charlie Lamb born in Knoxville, Tennessee, 1921 (now 89)
Eddie Adcock born in Scottsville, Virginia, 1938 (now 72)
Leon Everette born in Aiken, South Carolina, 1948 (now 62)
Kathy Mattea born in Cross Lanes, West Virginia, 1959 (now 51)
Porter Howell of Little Texas born in Longview, Texas, 1964 (now 46)

June 22:

Peter Asher born in Williesden, Middlesex, England, 1944 (now 66). The former half of the pop duo Peter and Gordon was the producer of most of Linda Ronstadt's crossover hits.
Kris Kristofferson born in Brownsville, Texas, 1936 (now 73)
Ralph S. Peer born in Independence, Missouri, 1892 (died 1960)
Roy Drusky born in Atlanta, Georgia, 1930 (died 2004)
Elton Britt died (heart attack), 1972 (was 58)

June 23:

Zeb Turner born in Lynchburg, Virginia, 1915 (died 1978)
June Carter Cash born in Maces Springs, Virginia, 1929 (died 2003)

June 24:

Johnnie Bailes of the Bailes Brothers born in Kanawha County, West Virginia, 1918 (died 1989)
Foy Willing of Riders of the Purple Sage died (heart attack), 1978 (was 63)
Songwriter Tim Krekel died (stomach cancer), 2009 (was 57)

June 25:

Jenifer Strait, daughter of George Strait, died (car wreck), 1986 (was 13)
Boudleaux Bryant died (cancer), 1987 (was 67)
Lew DeWitt retires from the Statler Brothers because of health issues, 1982
Billboard magazine renames the "Hillbilly" music chart the "Country and Western" chart, 1949

June 26:

Doc Williams born in Cleveland, Ohio, 1914 (now 96)
Kenny Baker born in Jenkins, Kentucky, 1926 (now 84)
Gretchen Wilson born in Granite City, Illinois, 1973 (now 37)
Colonel Tom Parker born in Breda, Netherlands, 1909 (died 1997). Before Elvis, Colonel Tom managed Hank Snow, Eddy Arnold, and Minnie Pearl.
Vernon Presley died (heart failure), 1979 (was 63)
Elvis Presley's final concert, at the Hoosier Dome in Indianapolis, 1977

June 27:

Lorrie Morgan born in Nashville, Tennessee, 1959 (now 51)
Elton Britt born in Marshall, Arkansas, 1913 (died 1972)
Rosalie Allen born in Old Forge, Pennsylavania, 1924 (died 2003)
Little Roy Wiggins born in Nashville, Tennessee, 1926 (died 1999)
Joe Maphis died (lung cancer), 1986 (was 65)
Bob Keeshan born in Lynbrook, New York, 1927 (died 2004). The Statler Brothers referenced Keeshan's best-known character in their hit "Flowers on the Wall:" "Smokin' cigarettes and watchin' Captain Kangaroo."

June 28:

George Morgan born in Waverly, Tennessee, 1924 (died 1975)
The WWVA Wheeling Jamboree began, 1940

June 29:

T. Tommy Cutrer born in Osyka, Mississippi, 1924 (died 1998)

Frank Loesser born in New York City, 1910 (died 1969). The legendary pop songwriter was the first "victim" of a Homer & Jethro parody in 1949, "Baby, It's Cold Outside." After Homer & Jethro recorded seven more parodies of Loesser compositions for an EP (Homer & Jethro Fracture Frank Loesser), Loesser, a fan of the pair, wrote the liner notes.
Rosemary Clooney died (lung cancer), 2002 (was 74)

June 30:

Dwayne O'Brien of Little Texas born in Ada, Oklahoma, 1963 (now 47)
Doyle Holly born in Perkins, Oklahoma, 1936 (died 2007)
R.W. Blackwood of the Blackwood Brothers Quartet died (plane crash), 1954 (was 33)
Bill Lyles of the Blackwood Brothers Quartet died (plane crash), 1954 (age unknown)
Chet Atkins died (brain cancer), 2001 (was 77)

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Breaking: New Hall of Famer Dies


It is with great sadness that I report the death of legendary country singer and sausage king Jimmy Dean.

Dean died Sunday (6/13) of natural causes, according to his wife Donna.

Dean is one of four members of the Country Music Hall of Fame class of 2010. He joined Ferlin Husky (who had two serious hospitalizations last year), Don Williams, and producer/songwriter Billy Sherrill when the announcements were made in February. The formal inductions are slated for later this summer.

Although best known for his 1961 hit "Big Bad John," which reached #1 on both the country and the pop charts, there was so much more to Jimmy Dean than that one big song. His songs ranged from historical ("PT 109") to comical ("I Won't Go Huntin' With You, Jake [But I'll Go Chasin' Women]") to sentimental ("IOU"). He also introduced the world to Roy Clark and Jim Henson on his 50s and 60s television series The Jimmy Dean Show. And, of course, he became a household name when he launched his own brand of sausage products in 1969.

Jimmy Dean was 81.

Jimmy Dean dies

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Dates of Note in Country Music, June 1-15

Category: News

(Country Music Hall of Famers in bold)

June 1:
Dale Warren of the Sons of the Pioneers born in Summerville, Kentucky, 1925 (now 85)
Andy Griffith born in Mount Airy, North Carolina, 1926 (now 84)
Pat Boone born in Jacksonville, Florida, 1934 (now 76). The legendary pop crooner married Red Foley's daughter Shirley.
Hazel Dickens born in Mercer County, West Virginia, 1935 (now 75)
Wayne Kemp born in Greenwood, Arkansas, 1941 (now 69)
Ronnie Dunn of Brooks & Dunn born in Coleman, Texas, 1953 (now 55)
Elsie McWilliams born in Harperville, Mississippi, 1896 (died 1985)
Johnny Bond born in Enville, Oklahoma, 1915 (died 1978)
Lee Allen of the Allen Brothers born in Sewanee, Tennessee, 1906 (died 1981)
Jimmy Murphy died (unknown cause), 1981 (was 55)

June 2:
Carl Butler born in Knoxville, Tennessee, 1927 (died 1992)
Helen Carter died (heart failure), 1998 (was 70)
Adolph Hofner died (illness), 2000 (was 83)

June 3:
Fred "Too Slim" LeBour of Riders in the Sky born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1948 (now 62)
Jamie O'Neal born in Sydney, Australia, 1968 (now 42)
Curly Williams born in Cairo, Georgia, 1914 (died 1970)
Homer Louis "Boots" Randolph born in Paducah, Kentucky, 1927 (died 2007)
Wally Fowler died (drown), 1994 (was 77)
Van Stoneman of the Stoneman Family died (Parkinson's disease), 1995 (was 54)
Graceland opens to the public, 1982
The Cincinnati radio show Midwest Hayride begins television broadcasts (on WLW-TV), 1955

June 4:
Bill Mack born in Shamrock, Texas, 1929 (now 81)
Linda Martell born in Leesville, South Carolina, 1941 (now 69). She was the first Black female artist to perform on the Grand Ole Opry.
Texas Ruby Owens born in Wise County, Texas, 1910 (died 1963)
Freddy Fender born in San Benito, Texas, 1937 (died 2006)
Zeke Clement died (unknown cause), 1994 (was 82)
John Hartford died (cancer), 2001 (was 63)
Alabama's annual "June Jam" concert began in Fort Payne, Alabama, 1982

June 5:
Don Reid of the Statler Brothers born in Staunton, Virginia, 1945 (now 65)
Gail Davies born in Broken Bow, Oklahoma, 1948 (now 62)
William "Hopalong Cassidy" Boyd born in Cambridge, Ohio, 1895 (died 1972)
Hal Lone Pine born in Pea Cove, Maine, 1916 (died 1977)
John "Lonzo" Sullivan died (heart attack), 1967 (was 48)
Conway Twitty died (abdominal aneurysm), 1993 (was 59)
Ronald Reagan died (complications of Alzheimer's disease), 2004 (was 93). While governor of California, the former president signed a full pardon for former convict Merle Haggard.
Grand Ole Opry's first performance at the Ryman auditorium, 1943

June 6:
Joe Stampley born in Springhill, Louisiana, 1943 (now 67)
Gid Tanner of the Skillet Lickers born in Thomas Bridge, Georgia, 1885 (died 1960)
Asher Sizemore born in Manchester, Kentucky, 1906 (died 1973)
Charlie Cline of the Lonesome Pine Fiddlers born in Gilbert, West Virginia, 1931 (died 2004)
Claudette Orbison, wife of Roy Orbison, died (motorcycle accident), 1966 (was 24)
Grant Turner began his tenure as Grand Ole Opry announcer, 1944

June 7:
Sir Tom Jones born in Treforest, South Wales, 1940 (now 70). The legendary pop/rock singer had a hit with a cover of "Green, Green Grass of Home" in 1967 and hit the country charts with "Say You'll Stay Until Tomorrow" in 1977.
Larry Boone born in Cooper City, Florida, 1956 (now 54)
Dean Martin born in Steubenville, Ohio, 1917 (died 1995). The pop crooner recorded two albums of country music on Reprise in the early 60s and sang with Ricky Nelson in the John Wayne classic Rio Bravo in 1969.
Wynn Stewart born in Morrisville, Missouri, 1934 (died 1985)
Courtney Johnson of New Grass Revival died (lung cancer), 1996 (was 56)

June 8:
Vernon Oxford born in Rogers, Arkansas, 1941 (now 69)
Tony Rice born in Danville, Virginia, 1951 (now 59)
Adolph Hofner born in Moulton, Texas, 1916 (died 2000)
Alton Delmore died (alcohol-related illness), 1964 (was 55)
Roba Stanley died (unknown cause), 1986 (was 76). She is credited as being the first female solo artist recorded in country music history (1924).
Tommy Perkins of the Texas Playboys died (car accident), 2003 (was 69)

June 9:
Les Paul born in Waukesha, Wisconsin, 1915 (died 2009). In addition to his recordings with wife Mary Ford, Paul invented the solid-body electric guitar and multi-track recording. He also won a Grammy for his album with Chet Atkins, Chester and Lester, in 1976.
Willard Cox of the Cox Family born in Cotton Valley, Louisiana, 1937 (now 73)
Jamie Dailey of Dailey & Vincent born in Corbin, Kentucky, 1975 (now 35)

June 10:
Herman Crook of the Crook Brothers died (heart attack), 1988 (was 89)
Steve Sanders, who replaced William Lee Golden in the Oak Ridge Boys for 15 years, died (suicide), 1998 (was 45)
Ray Charles died (complications of liver disease), 2004 (was 73). Charles made the country charts in the 80s with duets with George Jones and Willie Nelson, and his ground-breaking 1963 album Modern Sounds in Country Music presented country songs to a wide audience.

June 11:
Jay McDowell of BR-549 born in Bedford, Indiana, 1969 (now 41)
Edwin Duhon of the Hackberry Ramblers born in Lafayette, Louisiana, 1910 (died 2006)
Brother Dave Gardner born in Jackson, Tennessee, 1926 (died 1983)
Jud Strunk born in Jamestown, New York, 1936 (died 1981)
Wilma Burgess born in Orlando, Florida, 1939 (died 2003)
John Wayne died (cancer), 1979 (was 72). The actor has been referenced in a number of country songs.

June 12:
Junior Brown born in Kirksville, Indiana, 1952 (now 56)
Rebecca Holden born in Austin, Texas, 1958 (now 52)
Penny Jay born in Monteagle Mountain, Tennessee, 1927 (died 2006)
Dr. Humphrey Bate of the Possum Hunters died (unknown cause), 1936 (was 61)
J.E. Mainer died (heart attack), 1971 (was 72)
Johnny Bond died (heart attack), 1978 (was 63)
Danny Davis died (heart failure), 2008 (was 83)

June 13:
Howard Vokes born in Clearfield, Pennsylvania, 1931 (now 79)
Slim Dusty born in Kempsey, Australia, 1927 (died 2003)
The Country Music Foundation Library and Media Center opened in the basement of the Country Music Hall of Fame, 1972. The CMF is now on the top floor of the new Hall of Fame building.

June 14:
Burl Ives born in Newton, Illinois, 1909 (died 1995)
Lash LaRue born in Gretna, Louisiana, 1917 (died 1996). The Western actor was the first sidekick to western singer/actor/songwriter Eddie Dean and was mentioned in the Statler Brothers' "Whatever Happened to Randolph Scott."
Ernest V. "Pop" Stoneman died (illness), 1968 (was 75)
Patsy Cline seriously injured in a car accident, 1961

June 15:
RCA engineer Bill Porter born in St. Louis, Missouri, 1931 (now 79)
Terri Gibbs born in Miami, Florida, 1954 (now 56)
Blind Alfred Reed born in Floyd, Virginia, 1880 (died 1956)
Tex Owens born in Killeen, Texas, 1892 (died 1962)
Marvin Hughes born in Nashville, Tennessee, 1911 (died 1986)
Leon Payne born in Alba, Texas, 1917 (died 1969)
Waylon Jennings born in Littlefield, Texas, 1937 (died 2002)
Ruby Falls died (unknown cause), 1986 (was 40)
The summer replacement show for the CBS variety series The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour began airing, 1969. That show was Hee Haw.