Johnny Cash hit the stage for what would be the final time on this day in 2003.
When appearing at the Carter Fold Ranch, Cash paid tribute to his late wife, June Carter Cash (who passed away in May of the same year) before singing “Ring Of Fire”:
“The spirit of June Carter overshadows me tonight with the love she had for me and the love I have for her. We connect somewhere between here and heaven. She came down for a short visit, I guess, from heaven to visit with me tonight to give me courage and inspiration like she always has.”
Of all the posthumously released albums that have helped to keep the legend ofPatsy Clinealive and well, Live At The Cimarron Ballroom is one of the most fascinating. It was recorded at that venue in Tulsa, Oklahoma on 29 July, 1961 (ticket price: $1.50), and released for the first time on the same date 19 years ago, in 1997.
The MCA release was a precious opportunity to hear a completely authentic live performance by the country queen from Gore, Virginia, and to experience a concert that took place a few weeks before her 29th birthday. She performs signature hits like ‘I Fall To Pieces’ and ‘Walkin’ After Midnight,’ as well as standards such as ‘Won’t You Come Home, Bill Bailey’ and songs that she never recorded on a studio album, such as ‘When My Dreamboat Comes Home’ and the Connie Francis hit ‘Stupid Cupid.’
It’s a gripping recording, and not just because of Cline’s stellar vocal performance and undoubted star quality. The album is also striking for the inter-song chat, especially when it locks the concert in a very specific time frame. “I’m kind of out of wind, this is the first time I’ve worked since I got out of the hospital,” she tells the crowd at one point. Six weeks earlier, on 14 June, she had been involved in a serious car accident, a head-on collision in Nashville.
Hank Williams‘ country classic “Lovesick Blues” is proving to be a Spotify sensation 96 years after its release. And it’s all thanks to a viral video featuring a yodeling boy.
11-year-old Mason Ramsey was filmed yodeling the track at a Walmart in Illinois, and the clip spread across the Internet like wildfire, spawning memes, remixes, and parody videos. The original posting on Twitter has amassed over 20 million views.
Williams’ version has reached a peak of #22 on the streaming service. During its initial run kicking off in 1922, it hit #4.
“Lovesick Blues” was the track that skyrocketed Williams to fame, and could prove to do the same for Ramsey: the young yodeler has appeared on the Ellen DeGeneres show, and is set to play The Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.
Watch the clip of Ramsey performing below, and take a listen to Hank Williams’ original version:
Chris Stapleton has amassed a huge amount of accolades in a short amount of time: from starting out as a go-to Nashville songwriter, to fronting new bands before finding success as a solo outfit, Stapleton’s hard work ethic and spine-tingling output has pushed him to the forefront of country music.
Stapleton co-wrote six country #1 singles performed by Kenny Chesney, George Strait, Luke Bryan, Darius Rucker, and more. He has over 150 writing credits including songs by Adele, Peter Frampton, and Sheryl Crow.
After a two-year stint with the SteelDrivers from 2008 to 2010, Stapleton moved into solo territory where he proved to really shine. His debut studio album, Traveller, debuted at #14, but a duet performance with Justin Timberlake at the CMA Awards propelled the album to increase 6,000% in sales, pushing it to the top of the charts. It has since sold over 2 million copies in the United States alone while obtaining Gold certification in Canada.
Today, we remember Merle Haggard: today marks two year since he died on his 79th birthday at his home in California due to complications from pneumonia.
His fantastic discography, spanning over six decades, includes many of country music’s greatest hits. Writing many from the perspective of the working class people, Haggard’s music resonated so easily with those going through tough times.
With 38 #1 country hits under his belt, Haggard started playing guitar at age 11, two years after the death of his father. Turning to music to escape his school and criminal troubles, it was a run-in with country star Lefty Frizzell that really catapulted his love for performing. Haggard snuck his way backstage and sang one of Frizzell’s song to him. Lefty insisted Merle hit the stage before him, and Haggard fell in love with being in front of a crowd.
It wasn’t smooth sailing–Haggard was sentenced to five years in prison after attempting to rob a cafe with a friend. Johnny Cash visited the prison to perform, and that pushed Haggard to pursue music full-time when he was released early in 1960.