Country Music News

By United Press International  |  Jan. 3, 2002 at 4:45 AM
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(Thurs., Jan.3)

Leon McAuliffe was born in Houston, Texas, in 1917.

Rusty Golden of the Goldens was born in Brewton, Ala., in 1959.

Nikki Nelson was born in San Diego, Calif., in 1969.

Fiddler and bandleader Clayton McMichen died at age 70 in Battletown, Ky., in 1970.

Producer Felton Jarvis died at age 46 in Nashville in 1981.

Ricky Skaggs' "Highways and Heartaches" album went platinum in 1982.



Country Music Hall of Famer Charlie Louvin is recuperating at home after being injured in an automobile accident Monday near his home in Manchester, Tenn.

"I'm sore in places I didn't even know I owned," Louvin told the Web site "I'm extremely sore all over. I think if I coughed, I'd die. I've got rib problems, sternum problems. My sinuses were cracked. I got about 30 stitches in the head. So, I'm just hanging in here trying to recuperate."

No other automobiles were involved in the crash, and Louvin, 74, doesn't know what caused him to lose control of his car and hit a tree. "I don't believe I fell asleep and I don't drink," he said. "I must have blacked out. ... The last thing I remember is being dragged out of the car."

Louvin had been scheduled to host "Ernest Tubb's Midnight Jamberee" this Saturday in Nashville. "I'll reschedule as soon as I get my wind back," he promised.

Louvin is a fixture on the Grand Ole Opry and has scored more than a dozen Top 40 country hits as a solo artist.


A spokesman for Tim McGraw is denying a National Enquirer report that the country singer's baby with Faith Hill, born last month, has a terminal illness. McGraw's publicist says the infant was born slightly premature but is not suffering from health problems.


Roy Orbison's widow has filed a more than $10 million lawsuit against a Tennessee television production company, claiming documentary makers failed to make required payments to her and

misrepresented their connections to television networks and cable outlets.

Barbara Orbison's lawsuit, filed in Davidson County, Tenn., Circuit Court, says Barbara and Gregory Hall produced two documentaries that aired on television and were released on home

video. It claims the Halls did not make the payments required under their contract and did not provide an accounting of earnings they made from the productions.

The lawsuit seeks to block the Halls from finishing a documentary on Barbara Orbison's


Orbison's estate sued Sony Music Entertainment in 1998 seeking $12 million in royalties for use of his recordings. That lawsuit is still pending in federal district court. Barbara

Orbison also went to court last year against Napster, claiming more than one million copyright violations involving Orbison's songs.

(The above two items thanks to UPI's Mike Cooper in Atlanta)


CMT: Country Music Television will examine the origins, history and roots of country music in a 13-part series titled "A Century of Country." It'll be hosted by Emmy-winning actor James Garner.

The first installment in the series will premiere this Saturday (at 9 p.m. ET/PT) on the cable TV network. A new episode will air each Saturday night following the telecast of the "Grand Ole Opry Live" through March 30.

Episode descriptions:

-- Jan. 5, "A Celebration of Country." The birth of country music through the 1920s, from its rural roots in fiddle music to early legends including the Carter Family and Jimmie Rodgers.

-- Jan. 12, "A Night At The Opry." A look at the venerable "Mother Church of Country Music," the Grand Ole Opry House, and how it has inspired generations of country music artists.

-- Jan. 19, "Singing Cowboys." The romantic myth of the singing cowboy captured the imaginations of Hollywood and Nashville thanks to superstars like Gene Autry and Roy Rogers.

-- Jan. 26, "Bluegrass & Western Swing." Bluegrass gave rise to stars like Bill Monroe, Flatt & Scruggs and Ricky Skaggs, while Western Swing created legends from Bob Wills to Hank Thompson.

-- Feb. 2, "The Women's Movement." Female trailblazers Kitty Wells, Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn and Tammy Wynette broke new ground and redefined the role of women in country music.

-- Feb. 9, "Honky Tonk Nights." An examination of the hard-living soul of honky tonk music through the lives of pioneers like Hank Williams, Ernest Tubb and Lefty Frizzell.

-- Feb. 16, "Rockabilly: The Music That Rocked Country." The birth of rockabilly in the '50's and the ascendance of Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins.

-- Feb. 23, "Nashville: The City That Music Built." Nashville, Music City USA, became the center of country music entertainment worldwide and home to a multi-billion dollar industry.

-- Mar. 2, "On The Road: A Star's Life." Contemporary stars of this Century of Country tell their tales of life on the road, and off.

-- Mar. 9, "Hello, Dolly! Country Moves into the 70s." Dolly Parton, country's first superstar, and the rise of pop-influenced country music by Charlie Rich, Kenny Rogers, Anne Murray and others.

-- Mar. 16, "Bakersfield and the Outlaws." Buck Owens' musical movement in Bakersfield, Calif., paved the way for country outlaws like Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard.

-- Mar. 23, "Urban Cowboy: Country Goes To Town." In 1980, the hit movie "Urban Cowboy" brought new listeners -- by the millions -- to country music. The lush sounds of Kenny Rogers to the new-traditionalist swagger of Dwight Yoakam brought country music to town.

-- Mar. 30, "The Whole World's Gone Country: The 90s and Beyond." A look at the hugely popular crossover country artists, as well as the new traditionalist movement in the 1990s. It will also focus on the multi-media mega-hits that have helped to take country music from the hills and hollows to the world in less than a century.

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