As Christmas festivities come to a close and New Years comes into focus, it’s once again time to reflect back on all of the country music greats we lost in the last year. From huge celebrity stars, to influential songwriters and side musicians who impacted the music out of the spotlight, country music lost many notable names in 2015.
Little Jimmy Dickens
It was a busy year in country music, with lots of controversy, lots of legal issues, and even death surrounding country music artists. It was a tumultuous 2015 to say the least. Here are the top news stories of the year taking into consideration 1) Their importance to country music overall 2) The interest, or accumulated interest in the story if covered in multiple articles, based on traffic registered at Saving Country Music.
Aaron Watson, Blackberry Smoke, Chris Ferrell, Chris Stapleton, Garth Brooks, Gary Overton, Jason Aldean, Jason Isbell, Joey + Rory, Joey Feek, Keith Hill, Little Jimmy Dickens, Luke Bryan, Merle Haggard, Randy Howard, Stoney LaRue, Tim McGraw, Wayne Mills, Willie Nelson
Jean Shepard Is Angry Over Today’s Country Music “And I Don’t Care Who Knows It, I’ll Tell the World.”
An Opry member for going on six decades, Shepard is set to celebrate her 60th Anniversary on the stage show November 21st. Ahead of the special night, she sat down with The Tennessean’s Juli Thanki to talk about how she helped open doors for the women of country music. Shepard was also very outspoken about how she feels about the country music of today.
Maddie & Tae have become the perfect foil to today’s male country stars. They’re like the Minnie Pearl of country music’s Millennial generation. Staunch traditionalists are never going to give Maddie & Tae a serious chance, but that doesn’t mean their music (and “Shut Up and Fish”) doesn’t symbolize a wholesale reversal of course for what we’re used to the mainstream serving.
One of the most important and influential steel guitar players in the history of country music has died. Buddy Emmons, known as the “The World’s Foremost Steel Guitarist” passed away Wednesday evening (7-29) according to reports. He was 78-years-old.
2015 so far has been an especially dark year for deaths in the greater country music world. From the passing of legends such as “Little” Jimmy Dickens and Jim Ed Brown, to the tragedy of lives ended too soon like in the cases of Randy Howard and Jon Hensley. We don’t always take to proper time to honor all of those that have passed, so as we enter the second half of 2015, let’s reflect back on who we have lost so far.
AJ Masters, Billy Block, Bob Burns, Bob Stegall, Bobby Emmons, Dan Wilson Jr., Dixie Hall, Don Robertson, Dottie Dillard, Herb McCullough, Jack Eubanks, James "Spider" Wilson, Jean Ritchie, Jim Ed Brown, Joe B. Maudlin, Johnny Gimble, Jon Hensley, Little Jimmy Dickens, Randy Howard, Red Lane, Sandy Mason, Tom Skinner, Toni Dae, Tut Taylor, Wayne Kemp
With the passing of the 94-year-old “Little” Jimmy Dickens at the beginning of 2015, it’s a reminder for us to cherish the final living links to country music’s most legendary past who can still tell stories of how country music once was. The amount of performers who were important in forming the very foundation of country music are quickly fading away.
Bill Monroe, Billie Jean Horton, Bobby Osborne, Buck Owens, Buck White, Carter Stanley, Don Maddox, Eddie Arnold, Elvis, George Jones, Hank Snow, Hank Williams, Harold Bradley, Jan Howard, Jean Shepard, Jesse McReynolds, Jim and Jesse, Jim Ed Brown, Joe Pennington, Keith Whitley, Larry Sparks, Lee Ann Womack, Lefty Frizell, Little Jimmy Dickens, Maddox Brothers & Rose, Marty Stuart, Mel Tillis, Owen Bradley, Pee Wee King, Ralph Stanley, Ray Price, Red Simpson, Ricky Skaggs, Rose Maddox, Roy Acuff, Roy Orbison, Stonewall Jackson, Studio 'A', The Clinch Mountain Boys, The Grand Ole Opry, The Quonset Hut, The Stanley Brothers, The Whites, Tompall Glaser, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson
Out of the 67 current members of the Opry, only 25 of them fulfilled their 10 appearance obligation, and three of those died during the year. 11 members didn’t make any appearances at all. But what may be more interesting is who is appearing on the Opry to take up the slack. Of the Top 11 performing members at the Grand Ole Opry in 2014, the average age was 79-years-old.
Bill Anderson, Blake Shelton, Bobby Osborne, Brad Paisley, Byron Fay, Carrie Underwood, Chris Jansen, Connie Smith, Craig Morgan, Darius Rucker, Elizabeth Cook, George Hamilton IV, Jean Shepard, Jeannie Seely, Jesse McReynolds, Jim Ed Brown, Jimmy C. Newman, John Conley, Little Big Town, Little Jimmy Dickens, Lorrie Morgan, Mike Snider, Old Crow Medicine Show, Pete Fisher, Rascal Flatts, Riders In The Sky, Sarah Darling, The Grand Ole Opry, The Henningsens, The Whites, Vince Gill, WSM
A country music legend, and one of the oldest living country music performers from country’s golden era, is gone. “Little” Jimmy Dickens, one of the most venerable members of The Grand Ole Opry and a country music Hall of Famer, was admitted to the hospital on Christmas for an undisclosed illness, and passed away on Friday, January 2nd. He has just turned 94 on December 19th.
A country music legend, and one of the oldest living country music performers still alive from country’s golden era is in critical condition in a Nashville area hospital. “Little” Jimmy Dickens, one of the most venerable members of The Grand Ole Opry and a country music Hall of Famer, was admitted to the hospital on Christmas for an undisclosed illness.
Waylon fans and collectible enthusiasts from around the country and world made their way to the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, AZ or tuned in online to a 2,000-item estate liquidation from the Arizona homestead of the late Waylon Jennings. The auction was conducted by Guernsey’s of New York who compiled over 500 lots of Waylon’s personal effects.
Dale Watson’s last album “The Sun Sessions” with its Johnny Cash-infused vibe came out in October of 2011 so you’d figure it’s about time for him to release some new material, and that’s exactly what he’ll do on Monday (8-27) when he debuts his new single “Daughter’s Wedding Song”; the first single from his upcoming album I Lie When I Drink due out in early 2013.
Saving Country Music is pleased to bring you the official Muddy Roots Festival 2012 Performance Schedule! It includes a whopping 10 new additions for the previously-released lineup, including Grand Ole Opry icon and Country Music Hall of Famer Little Jimmy Dickens, and Texas country music legend James “Slim” Hand.
My overall grade of the 2011 CMA Awards would be “not terrible.” Jason Aldean could have swept the awards, and ushered in a new era in country music where a country rap song was the reigning Song of the Year. But Taylor’s Entertainer of the Year victory at least means that at least a little authenticity is still alive in the “country” genre. Or at least for another year.
2011, Blake Shelton, Brad Paisley, Brantley Gilbert, CMA Awards, Colt Ford, Eric Church, Hank Williams, Jason Aldean, Jr., Justin Bieber, Lady Antebellum, Lionel Ritchie, Little Jimmy Dickens, Luke Bryan, Martina McBride, Miranda Lambert, Scotty McCreery, Sugarland, Taylor Swift, The Band Perry
First off some house cleaning stuff: If you haven’t seen it yet, check out the Hank 3 music blog about Hank III Listening Parties happening around the country. I might have more about this in a future blog. If you read my blog from yesterday and thought you saw some of the language change, you […]