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Country Music News

By DICK KELSEY, United Press International   |   April 17, 2003 at 5:00 AM
TODAY IN COUNTRY MUSIC HISTORY

(Thursday, April 17)

Rockabilly singer Eddie Cochran dies, 1960.

Marty Robbins' No. 1 single "Ribbon Of Darkness" is charted, 1965.

Johnny Cash performs for President Nixon at the White House, 1970.

Aaron Tippin's "There Ain't Nothing Wrong with the Radio" hits No. 1, 1992.


MUSIC AND MORE


JO DEE OFFERS NEW SONG ON WEB

Jo Dee Messina has put her feelings about America's war dead into a new song, "Heaven Was Needing A Hero," and has posted it on her Web site, jodeemessina.com.

Messina's "simple guitar/piano" song grew out of the emotional roller coaster she has been on since the U.S. went to war with Iraq, the singer/songwriter says in a statement.

"I thought of the song when I saw an interview with a family member of the first female soldier killed in combat," says Messina. "As I continue to watch the war coverage, my heart breaks for all of the family members who have lost loved ones."

Messina says she finished the song the day NBC announced the death of David Bloom, one of its embedded reporters covering the war who suffered a pulmonary embolism.


WORLEY PERFORMS AT PENTAGON

Darryl Worley, whose patriotic single "Have You Forgotten?" is topping the charts, put on a show at the Pentagon Wednesday.

Worley told a crowd gathered in the Pentagon courtyard -- and hundreds of thousands of troops watching on closed circuit TV - that his No. 1 single is "pro-American" and "pro-military."

Worley, who has performed for U.S. troops in Afghanistan, said he hopes to put on a concert "on Main Street in Baghdad."

The singer was introduced by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.


TOWNES VAN ZANDT DEMOS OUT NEXT WEEK

Ten songs the late Townes Van Zandt recorded as demos nearly four decades ago will be released by Compadre Records next Tuesday on "In The Beginning."

The tracks were taped in 1966 -- "some with a band, some solo" -- prior to Van Zandt's debut album "For The Sake Of The Song" (later retitled "First Album"), a Compadre release said.

The songs were discovered by producer "Cowboy" Jack Clement when he was cataloging tapes of Van Zandt recordings found in a vault about ten years ago, said Van Zandt's ex-wife, Jeanene.

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