Country Music News

By United Press International  |  Dec. 28, 2001 at 4:45 AM
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(Fri., Dec. 28)

Dorsey Burnette was born in Memphis, Tenn., in 1932.

Joe Diffie born in Tulsa, Okla., in 1958.

Mike McGuire, drummer for Shenandoah, was born in Haleyville, Ala., also in 1958.

Bill Anderson debuted on the chart with "That's What It's Like to Be Lonesome," also in 1958.

Marty Roe, lead singer for Diamond Rio, was born in Lebanon, Ohio, in 1960.

Hank Williams Jr., age 14, made his first recording for MGM in 1963.

Tex Ritter made his final Grand Ole Opry appearance in 1973.

Only 10 months after being sent to an Ohio prison for shooting a man in a tavern, country singer Johnny Paycheck asked Gov. Richard Celeste to pardon him in 1990. Less than a month later, the governor did.

Kenny Rogers and former Kentucky Gov. John Brown -- co-owners of the Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based restaurant chain Roasters Limited -- were hit with a $10 million trademark infringement lawsuit by Cluckers Wood Roasted Chicken in 1992.

Tammy Wynette was hospitalized in Nashville with what doctors described as a "sudden major infection" in 1993.

Billy Ray Cyrus married his longtime companion, Leticia Finley, in Nashville, also in 1993.

Waylon Jennings and his wife, Jessi Colter, had an estate sale in Brentwood, Tenn., selling many personal items in 2000.


(Sat., Dec. 29)

Rose Lee Maphis was born in Baltimore, Md., in 1922.

Ed Bruce was born in Keiser, Ark., in 1940.

Gene Autry charted two singles, "Don't Live a Lie" and "I Want to Be Sure," in 1945.

Glen Campbell debuted on the chart with "Kentucky Means Paradise" in 1962.

Shania Twain topped's list of artists whose songs were downloaded the most in 1999 (in Twain's case, more than 56,000 times).

(Sun., Dec. 30)

Skeeter Davis, whose real name is Mary Francis Penick, was born in 1931.

Melvin Goins of the bluegrass band The Goins Brothers was born in Bramwell, W.Va., in 1933.

Dobro great Mike Auldridge was born in Washington, D.C., in 1938.

Bob Wills & The Texas Playboys made their first appearance on the Grand Ole Opry in 1944.

"The Roy Rogers Show" debuted on NBC-TV in 1951.

Teenage singing star Brenda Lee lost her home and her pet poodle in a fire in 1962.

A federal judge in Houston ruled in favor of a bar named the "Velvet Elvis" in a copyright infringement lawsuit filed by Elvis Presley Enterprises in 1996.


IF IT'S LATE DECEMBER, THEN IT'S AGAIN TIME FOR COUNTRY.COM'S YEAR-END TOP-10 LISTS critic Edward Morris has compiled his list of the best country songs of 2001. In no particular order, they are:

-- "You Don't Love God if You Don't Love Your Neighbor" and "I'm Not Over You" from "The Storm Still Rages," Rhonda Vincent

-- "Angry All the Time" from "Set This Circus Down," Tim McGraw

-- "Careful What You Wish For" from "Careful What You Wish For," Ricky Lynn Gregg

-- "Daniel Prayed" from "Mountain Soul," Patty Loveless and Ricky Scaggs

-- "One More Day" from "One More Day," Diamond Rio

-- "A Little Bluer Than That" from "Simple Path," Irene Kelley

-- "What I Really Meant to Say" from "My World," Cyndi Thomson

-- "I Wanna Talk About Me" from "Pull My Chain," Toby Keith

-- "Alright Guy" from "Alright Guy," Gary Allan

Morris's "Top 10 Reasons I Like Garth Brooks and Hope This Isn't His Last Year in Country Music":

1. He has written and recorded some truly profound songs.

2. He has endured the criticism of lesser talents with grace and fortitude.

3. He still says "Yes sir" and "Yes ma'am" like he means it.

4. He doesn't travel with an entourage.

5. He remembers the people who were kind to him on the way up -- and the ones who weren't.

6. He uses his wealth, energy and imagination to transcend the constraints of time and space that shackle most of us.

7. He created Chris Gaines, a sensible invention for a man who's too big to inhabit just one personality. The failure of Chris Gaines -- who, let's not forget, has sold nearly 2 million albums -- wasn't the weakness of the music but Brooks' unwillingness to simply ignore the predictable ridicule and continue to build a separate life for his alter ego.

8. He exercises the kind of control over his record label that every artist secretly aspires to.

9. He never betrays his fans.

10. He was country when country wasn't cool. So he made it cool.


Travis Tritt has shot a video for his next single, "Modern Day Bonnie & Clyde," in the Mojave Desert in California. "Sling Blade" actor Billy Bob Thornton is featured in the video. The song comes from Tritt's new CD "Down The Road I Go."

The singer is one of the nominees for favorite male country artist at next month's American Music Awards.

(Thanks to UPI's Mike Cooper in Atlanta)

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