It wasn’t until 1922 that Country music was produced
commercially for the masses
to enjoy. The commercial production of Country
music was a huge accomplishment, but when Victor Records signed The Carter
Family and Jimmie Rodgers that faithful day on August 1, 1927 in Bristol, T.N.
it set the foundation for success.
LEGENDS IN COUNTRY MUSIC
John R. "Johnny" Cash (February 26, 1932 – September 12, 2003), was an American singer-songwriter, actor, and author,who has been called one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century.Although he is primarily remembered as a country music artist, his songs and sound spanned many other genres including rockabilly and rock and roll—especially early in his career—as well as blues, folk, and gospel. This crossover appeal led to
Cash being inducted in the Country Music Hall of Fame, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,
and Gospel Music Hall of Fame. Late in his career, Cash covered songs by several rock artists.
Cash was known for his deep, distinctive bass-baritone voice;for the "boom-chicka-boom" sound of his Tennessee Three backing band; for his rebelliousness,coupled with an increasingly somber and humble demeanor; for providing free concerts inside prison walls;and for his dark performance clothing, which earned him the nickname "The Man in Black".He traditionally started his concerts by saying, "Hello, I'm Johnny Cash."and usually following it up with his standard "Folsom Prison Blues."
Johnny Cash was a towering figure in 20th century American music, a
minimalist with a booming Old Testament baritone who could wrench an
abundance of power from stark settings. At first Cash was backed by
guitar and bass; in the end it was simply guitar. But when a voice can
tell a story with as much resonance as Cash's could, not much else is
Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/artists/johnny-cash/biography#ixzz1r2sK93f8
As a performer and a songwriter, Merle Haggard was the most important country artist to emerge in the 1960s, and he became
one of the leading figures of the Bakersfield country scene in the '60s. While his music remained hardcore country, he pushed
the boundaries of the music quite far. Like his idol, Bob
Wills, his music was a melting pot that drew from all forms of traditional American music -- country, jazz, blues, and
folk -- and in the process, developed a distinctive style of his own. As a performer, singer, and musician, he was one of
the best, influencing countless other artists. Not coincidentally, he was the best singer/songwriter in country music since
Hank Williams, writing a body of songs
that became classics. Throughout his career, Haggard has been a champion of the working man, largely due to his rough and
Willie Hugh Nelson (born April 30, 1933) is an American country music singer-songwriter, as well as an author, poet, actor, and activist. The critical success of the album Shotgun Willie (1973), combined with the critical and commercial success of Red Headed Stranger (1975) and Stardust (1978), made Nelson one of the most recognized artists in country music. He was one of the main figures of outlaw country, a subgenre of country music that developed at the end of the 1960s as a reaction to the conservative restrictions of the Nashville sound. Nelson has acted in over 30 films, co-authored several books, and has been involved in activism for the use of biofuels and the legalization of marijuana.
Born during the Great Depression,
and raised by his grandparents, Nelson wrote his first song at age
seven and joined his first band at ten. During high school, he toured
locally with the Bohemian Polka as their lead singer and guitar
player. After graduating from high school in 1950, he joined the Air
Force but was later discharged due to back problems. After his return,
Nelson attended Baylor University
for two years but dropped out because he was succeeding in music.
During this time, he worked as a disc jockey in Texas radio stations and
a singer in honky tonks. Nelson moved to Vancouver, Washington, where he wrote "Family Bible"
and recorded the song "Lumberjack" in 1956. In 1960, he signed a
publishing contract with Pamper Music which allowed him to join Ray Price's band as a bassist. During that time, he wrote songs that would become country standards, including "Funny How Time Slips Away", "Hello Walls", "Pretty Paper", and "Crazy". In 1962, he recorded his first album, And Then I Wrote. Due to this success, Nelson signed in 1964 with RCA Victor and joined the Grand Ole Opry
the following year. After mid-chart hits during the end of 1960s and
the beginning of the 1970s, and the failure to succeed in music, Nelson
retired in 1972 and moved to Austin, Texas. The rise of the popularity of Hippie music in Austin motivated Nelson to return from retirement, performing frequently at the Armadillo World Headquarters.
Nelson has also worked as an actor, with memorable performances in Honeysuckle Rose with Amy Irving and The Electric Horseman with Robert Redford, among other films. He was also featured in a 1986 country-western remake of Stagecoach co-starring Cash, Kristofferson, and Jennings.
His first wife was a full-blooded Cherokee Indian, 16 years old when she
married Nelson, who was 17. Their marriage was a wildly unstable
adventure in drinking, cheating, and physical fights. One brawl ended
when she cracked a whiskey bottle over his head, and another fight
started when she caught him with another woman, and ended with her
beating him with their children's jump rope.
His second marriage was to country singer Shirley Collie, who had
earlier been married to famed country DJ and promoted Biff Collie. They
recorded a few songs together, but his career sputtered and hers faded.
Their marriage ended when she opened the mail one day, and found a
hospital bill from the maternity ward, where Connie Koepke, a mistress
Nelson's wife had not known about, had delivered his son. Weeks before
his divorce from Collie was finalized, Nelson made Koepke his third
wife. Their marriage lasted 17 years, but ended when Nelson had an
affair with Amy Irving during the filming of Honeysuckle Rose. His fourth wife, Ann Marie D'Angelo, is a make-up artist.
He started his tradition of an annual Independence Day picnic-concert in 1973. His 1978 album Stardust,
a collection of American pop classics, stayed on the charts for a
remarkable ten years, and sold more than five million copies. He has
nine platinum and two double-platinum albums. Since 1985, Nelson, Neil Young, and John Mellencamp have organized numerous Farm Aid concerts, with the proceeds used to help and lobby for family farmers.
Born in 1931, George was reared in Beaumont, Texas on the twin weekly rituals of
hymn-singing and Grand Ole Opry radio broadcasts, where he took his first
musical cues from heroes like Bill Monroe and Roy Acuff. (“I would give anything
if I could sing like George Jones,” Acuff, the teacher, later said about the
His early life was a school of hard knocks not uncommon to east Texas. He ran
away at 14, and was soon on the honky-tonk circuit backing seemingly more
promising crooners. Marriage at 20 was followed by divorce at 21 and a stint in
the Marines. Then, in 1954, he signed with Starday Records and began recording
with Lefty Frizzell’s backup band. After the first run of up-tempo hits, he
really came into his own with haunting ballads like “The Window Up Above” that
seemed to exist in a romantic past, haunted present, and deliriously uncertain
future all at once.
In the ‘60s, Jones recorded hundreds of songs for the Mercury, Musicor, and
United Artists labels, including the No. 1 classics “Tender Years,” “She Thinks
I Still Care,” and “Walk Through This World With Me,” as well as more ephemeral
fare like “Love Bug.” He also found out just how much fans loved him not just as
a soloist but recurring duet partner – for the time being, Melba Montgomery, his
foil on “We Must Have Been Out of Our Minds” and other ‘60s singles.
Of course, the partner he’s most associated with is Tammy Wynette, who had a
major impact on the direction of his solo career as well. After Jones’ second
marriage ended in divorce, he met Tammy and moved to Nashville, where they wed
in 1969. In 1971, he moved over to her label, Epic, and began working with her
Born on January 19, 1946 in Locust Ridge, Tennessee, Dolly
Parton was one of twelve children. After high school, she moved to
Nashville to pursue music. She's won numerous Country Music Awards,
Grammys and starred in the hit films "9 to 5," and "Steel Magnolias."
She opened her Dollywood theme park in 1985 and was inducted into the
Country Music Hall of Fame in 2000.
"I'm not offended by dumb blonde jokes because I know that I'm not dumb. I also know I'm not blonde."
– Dolly Parton
Singer, songwriter, actress. Born Dolly Rebecca Parton on
January 19, 1946 in Locust Ridge, Tennessee. Raised in a poor family
with 12 children, Parton learned to escape her life by making up songs.
By age 11, she was singing on a local radio station and after graduating
from high school, she moved to Nashville to pursue a career in music.
Parton launched her solo career in 1967, and though she partnered with Porter Wagoner
for his television show from 1967-1975, she remained primarily a solo
act. (It was for Wagoner that Parton dedicated the ever-popular "I Will
Always Love You.") She won the Country Music Award for female vocalist
in 1975 and 1976.
PHOTO SOURCE- http://www.moviespad.com/celebrity/8713/dolly-parton/
Patsy Cline (September 8, 1932 – March 5, 1963), born Virginia Patterson Hensley in Gore, Virginia, was an American country music singer who was successful in pop music crossovers during the early 1960s era of the Nashville Sound.
Prior to her death at the age of 30 in a private plane crash, she was
at the height of her career. She is considered to be one of the most
influential, successful, and acclaimed female vocalists of the 20th
Cline was best known for her rich tone, emotionally expressive and bold contralto voice,and her role as a pioneer in the country music industry. She helped
pave the way for headlining women in country music. Prior to the early
1960s, so-called "girl singers" were seen by the male-dominated realm of
country music as mere "window dressing", only necessary to attract male
listeners to their shows. Cline's rise to popularity changed that, and
she has been cited as an inspiration by singers in several music genres. There are books, movies, documentaries, articles and stage plays documenting her life and career.
Patsy's big break came when she won an Arthur Godfrey Talent program in 1957 with the hit Walkin' After Midnight.
From there she pursued a recording career appearing at the mecca of
country music - the Grand Ole Opry in 1958, and received national awards
in 1961 and 1962.
Country music lost a magical entertainer when her career was ended in an airplane crash in Tennessee, in 1963.
1973 Patsy was elected posthumously to the Country Music Hall of Fame,
and her reputation is on record as one of the major female vocalists of
George Harvey Strait (born May 18, 1952) is an American country music singer, actor, and music producer. Strait is referred to as the "King of Country," and critics call Strait a living legend. He is known for his unique style of western swing music, bar-room ballads, honky-tonk
style, and fresh yet traditional Country music. George Strait holds the
world record for more number-one hit singles than any other artist in
the history of music on any chart or in any genre, having recorded 59
number-one hit singles as of 2012.
Strait rocketed to success after his first single "Unwound"
was a hit in 1981. While contributing to the neo-traditional movement
of the 1980s, he amassed seven number one albums in the decade with his
most popular hits including "Fool Hearted Memory" and "Ocean Front Property".
By the 1990s, Strait had influenced a new breed of performers while
continuing his own successes, having charted upwards of 20 number-one
hits including "Heartland" and "Blue Clear Sky". In the 2000s, Strait was named Artist of the Decade by the Academy of Country Music, was elected into the Country Music Hall of Fame, and won his first Grammy award for his hit album Troubadour.
Strait continued his previous successes throughout the decade,
producing a more contemporary sound with moderate cross-over hits
including "She'll Leave You with a Smile" and "You'll Be There".
Strait was named CMA Entertainer of the Year in 1989 and 1990, and ACM Entertainer of the Year in 1990. He has been nominated for more CMA and ACM
awards and has more wins in both categories than any other artist. As
of 2011, he holds the record for the most number-one hits on the Billboard Hot Country Songs
charts with 44 number one singles. Counting all other music charts,
Strait has amassed a total of 59 number-one hits overall, breaking a
record previously set by Conway Twitty.
Strait has sold more than 68.5 million albums in the United States and his certifications from the RIAA include 13 multi-platinum, 33 platinum, and 38 gold albums. His best-selling album is Pure Country (1992), which sold 6 million (6× Multi-platinum). His highest certified album is Strait Out of the Box
(1995), which sold 2 million copies (8× Multi-Platinum due to being a
box set with four CDs). According to the RIAA, Strait is the 12th
best-selling album recording artist in the United States overall.
READ MORE-SOURCE- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Strait
Troyal Garth Brooks (born February 7, 1962), best known as Garth Brooks, is an American country music artist who helped make country music a worldwide phenomenon. His eponymous first album was released in 1989 and peaked at number 2
in the US country album chart while climbing to number 13 on the
Billboard 200 album chart. Brooks' integration of rock elements into his
recordings and live performances has earned him immense popularity.
This progressive approach allowed him to dominate the country single and
album charts while quickly crossing over into the mainstream pop arena,
exposing country music to a larger audience.
Brooks has enjoyed one of the most successful careers in popular
music history, breaking records for both sales and concert attendance
throughout the 1990s. Garth Brooks still continues to sell well and
according to Nielsen Soundscan, his albums sales through October 2011
are at 68,561,000, which makes him the best-selling albums artist in the United States in the SoundScan era (since 1991), a title held since 1991, well over 5 million ahead of his nearest rival, The Beatles. Furthermore, according to RIAA he is the second best-selling solo albums artist in the United States of all time behind Elvis Presley (overall is third to the Beatles and Elvis Presley) with 128 million units sold. Brooks has released six albums that achieved diamond status in the United States, those being: Garth Brooks (10× platinum), No Fences (17× platinum), Ropin' the Wind (14× platinum), The Hits (10× platinum), Sevens (10× platinum) and Double Live (21× platinum). Since 1989, Brooks has released 19 records in all, which include; 9
studio albums, 1 live album, 4 compilation albums, 3 Christmas albums
and 2 box sets, along with 77 singles. He won several important awards
in his career as 2 Grammy Awards, 16 American Music Awards (not including the poll of "Artist of the '90s") and the RIAA Award
as Best selling solo albums artist of the Century in the United States.
As of 2010, Brooks' world-wide sales now exceed 90 million.
READ MORE- SOURCE-http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garth_Brooks
Loretta Lynn (born Loretta Webb April 14, 1935) is an American country music singer-songwriter, author and philanthropist. Born in Butcher Hollow, Kentucky to a coal miner father, Lynn married at 13 years old, was a mother soon after, and moved to Washington with her husband, Oliver Vanetta Lynn, Jr.
(b.1926, d.1996), nicknamed "Doo". Their marriage was sometimes
tumultuous; he had affairs and she was headstrong. Their experiences
together became inspiration for her music.
On her 18th birthday, Lynn's husband bought her a $17.00 Harmony guitar.
She taught herself to play and when she was 24, on her wedding
anniversary, Doo encouraged her to become a singer. She learned the
guitar better, started singing at the Delta Grange Hall in Washington
State with the Pen Brothers' band, The Westerners, then eventually cut
her first record in February, 1960. She became a part of the country
music scene in Nashville in the 1960s, and in 1967 charted her first of
16 number-one hits (out of 70 charted songs as a solo artist and a duet
partner that include "Don't Come Home A' Drinkin' (With Lovin' on Your Mind)", "You Ain't Woman Enough", "Fist City", and "Coal Miner's Daughter".
She focused on blue collar women's issues with themes of philandering
husbands and persistent mistresses, and pushed boundaries in the
conservative genre of country music by singing about birth control ("The Pill"), repeated childbirth ("One's on the Way"), double standards for men and women ("Rated "X""), and being widowed by the draft during the Vietnam War ("Dear Uncle Sam").
Country music radio stations often refused to play her songs.
Nonetheless, she became known as "The First Lady of Country Music" and
continues to be one of the most successful vocalists of all time.