There have been a number of country singers named Anderson who have graced the genre. During the 1960s and 1970s “Whispering” Bill Anderson placed an impressive number of songs on the charts, both as a songwriter and as a performer. John Anderson graced the scene during the 1980s and 1990s, mostly as a performer. Concurrently […]
It troubles me no end that the artistry of Merle Travis has been lost in the sands of time. It troubles me, but does not surprise me, as Travis–the victim of changing tastes and a lifelong battle with John Barleycorn–had largely disappeared from the airwaves by the time I started really following country music in […]
Although they claim common ancestry (Ernest Tubb, Gene Autry and Bill Monroe were all hugely influenced by Jimmie Rodgers), it has been many years since country and bluegrass music split off in different directions. Up until the end of the 1950s you could hear bluegrass played by country radio stations, and artists such as Jimmie […]
If Linda Davis is remembered today, it’s usually as the mother of Hillary Scott, lead singer of the modern pop-country group Lady Antebellum, who won a bunch of awards over the past few years for their first two albums. Occasionally, Davis is remembered for her Grammy winning 1993 duet with Reba McEntire, “Does He Love […]
In Rock & Roll, February 3, 1959, is known as “The Day The Music Died.” On that date a small plane crash in Iowa claimed the lives of Charles Hardin “Buddy Holly” Holley, J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson and Richard “Richie Valens” Valenzuela. Holly was already a superstar, The Big Bopper was a songwriter with […]
I am not sure why this should be true, but the 1960s produced an enormous number of silky-smooth male vocalists. Perhaps it was due to the crossover success of artists such as Eddy Arnold and Jim Reeves. More likely it was the result of the Rock ‘n Roll revolution of the mid-50s wiping out the […]
You may not have heard of Ola Belle Reed, but if you’ve listened to country or bluegrass music in the past couple of decades, you’ve likely heard her words sung by the likes of Del McCoury and Tim O’Brien. Born Ola Wave Campbell in western North Carolina in 1916, she was one of 13 children. […]
Being related to a famous country entertainer can be a mixed blessing. Although the family ties can open doors for the aspiring singer, they can also serve to set unrealistic expectations. Just ask Roy Acuff Jr., Ronnie Robbins (billed as Marty Robbins, Jr.), The Lynns (daughters of Loretta Lynn), Riley Coyle (daughter of Jeannie C. […]
“I figure we live in two worlds – public and private. It seems like I’ve got to prove myself in both all the time. I’ve got to climb mountains right to the top and then find new ones to climb. Whenever I finish writing a song, I always ask myself, ‘Well, Stutterin’ Boy, is that […]
James “Guy” Willis (July 5, 1915 – April 13, 1981) Charles “Skeeter” Willis (December 20, 1917 – January 28, 1976) John “Vic” Willis (May 31, 1922 – January 15, 1995) One of the most entertaining vocal groups ever to play the stage of the Grand Ole Opry, the Willis Brothers carved out substantial careers without […]
- Leeann Ward: Sheesh, Paul, that's a random/strange dig!
- Jack Williams: After reading that New Yorker article, I canceled my pre-order of the Basement Tapes box set. I love Bob …
- Leeann Ward: Wow! How terrible for Dixie Hall and Tom.
- Ken Morton, Jr.: Another twisted collection of songs to put into the Friday Five Hall of Fame, Juli.
- Arlene: I'd have included "Omie Wise." Doc Watson's is the version I'm familiar with but I think it's been recorded by …
- luckyoldsun: I think the number one country murder ballad is "Frankie and Johnny"--by Jimmie. Also, how about "Delia's Gone" from Harry Belafonte …
- Juli Thanki: Colloquial use of "fantastic" as a synonym for "excellent" dates back to the 1930s. And if it's good enough for …
- Paul W Dennis: I think "Banks of The Ohio", "Miller's Cave" and "It's Nothing to Me" are far creepier than several of the …
- Paul W Dennis: The Hight article is interesting, although I don't know that I would describe it as fantastic, but then I know …
- Dana M: I'm actually excited to hear a new Reba album. As for the Alan Jackson tour, I hope he announces Canadian …