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July 17

Jul 17, 1918
Red Sovine is born in Charleston, West Virginia. A Grand Ole Opry member beginning in 1954, he specializes in recitations, hitting paydirt with “Giddyup Go” and the million-selling CB special “Teddy Bear”

Jul 17, 1954
Elvis Presley makes his first live appearance since holding his inaugural sessions at the Sun Recording Studio. He sings “That’s All Right” and “Blue Moon Of Kentucky” during the set at Memphis’ Bon Air Club
Jul 17, 1958
Johnny Cash holds what amounts to his final recording session for Sun Records in Memphis, with Charlie Rich playing piano
Jul 17, 1969
Merle Haggard records the studio version of “Okie From Muskogee” at the Capitol Recording Studios in Hollywood

Jul 17, 1973
Lefty Frizzell records his classics “I Never Go Around Mirrors” and “That’s The Way Love Goes” at Nashville’s Woodland Sound Studio
Jul 17, 1974
Guitarist/harmony vocalist Don Rich dies in a motorcycle accident near Morro Beach, California. A member of Buck Owens’ Buckaroos, he provided some of the inspiration in the group’s sound and co-wrote “Before You Go” and “Waitin’ In Your Welfare Line”
Jul 17, 1975
A Russian version of Conway Twitty’s “Hello Darlin"” plays internationally when American astronauts dock in outer space with Soviet cosmonauts. Twitty watches from a motel room in Oakland, California

Jul 17, 1985
Wynn Stewart dies from a heart attack at his home in Hendersonville, Tennessee. A major link in the Bakersfield Sound, he had a half-dozen hits from 1960-1976, topped by 1967’s “It’s Such A Pretty World Today”
Jul 17, 1985
Warner Bros. releases Randy Travis’ label debut, “On The Other Hand.” The single fails, but is re-released the following year and becomes a classic
Jul 17, 1993
Alan Jackson’s “Chattahoochee” kicks off a four-week run at #1 on the Billboard country singles list
Jul 17, 1999
Lonestar’s ballad “Amazed” begins an eight-week stay at the top of the Billboard country singles chart