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July 3

Jul 3, 1922
Fiddler Harold Hensley is born in Whitetop, Virginia. He performs in the 1950s and ’60s on hits by Hank Thompson, Tennessee Ernie Ford, Skeets McDonald and Loretta Lynn, among others
Jul 3, 1946
Johnny Lee is born in Texas City, Texas. A sidekick of Mickey Gilley, he emerges from obscurity when the million-selling “Lookin’ For Love” appears in the 1980 film “Urban Cowboy,” then piles up a five-year run of hits


Jul 3, 1950
The USS Valley Forge launches the first carrier air strike of the Korean War. Among the crewmen on the ship is Scotty Moore, future guitarist for Elvis Presley
Jul 3, 1957
Songwriter Frank J. Myers is born in Dayton, Ohio. He builds such credits as John Michael Montgomery’s “I Swear,” Chris Young’s “Tomorrow,” Lonestar’s “I’m Already There” and Reba McEntire’s “One Honest Heart”
Jul 3, 1958
Aaron Tippin is born in Pensacola, Florida. His hard-tipped vocals net him a strong 1990s presence behind such hits as “That’s As Close I’ll Get To Loving You,” “You’ve Got To Stand For Something” and “There Ain’t Nothing Wrong With The Radio”

Jul 3, 1965
Roy Rogers’ 33-year-old horse, Trigger, dies, in California. The silver screen cowboy has the horse mounted and placed on display in his museum
Jul 3, 1965
The cover of TV Guide belongs to Jimmy Dean
Jul 3, 1969
A Smithsonian concert on the Mall in Washington, D.C., honors Bill Monroe. He performs with Charlie Monroe and Birch Monroe. The show also features J.E. Mainer and Wade Mainer
Jul 3, 1970
Johnny Cash refuses to shoot a bedroom scene in the movie “A Gunfight” when actress Karen Black, who portrays a prostitute, is expected to be nude. Cash wins: she wears clothes

Jul 3, 1979
Conway Twitty & Loretta Lynn record “You Know Just What I’d Do” and “It’s True Love” at Nashville’s Woodland Sound Studio
Jul 3, 1980
“Honeysuckle Rose” makes its world premiere in Austin, Texas. Willie Nelson stars in the movie, about a touring country star, using the picture to introduce his song “On The Road Again”
Jul 3, 1980
Merle Haggard writes the epilogue to his autobiography on the way to Austin for Willie Nelson’s Fourth of July Picnic
Jul 3, 1982
“Any Day Now” takes Ronnie Milsap to #1 on the Billboard country chart
Jul 3, 1993
Alison Krauss is introduced by Garth Brooks as she joins the Grand Ole Opry
Jul 3, 1993
Garth Brooks checks in at #1 on the Billboard country chart with “That Summer”

Jul 3, 1997
Bobby Bare, Waylon Jennings, Mel Tillis and Jerry Reed take over the Masterfonics studio in Nashville, where they record a live album, “Old Dogs.” The audience includes Shel Silverstein, Jan Howard, Carl Smith and Bobby Bare Jr.
Jul 3, 2001
Johnny Russell dies at Nashville’s Baptist Hospital after a lengthy battle with diabetes. The Grand Ole Opry member had three hits in the early-1970s, and wrote Buck Owens’ “Act Naturally” and George Strait’s “Let’s Fall To Pieces Together”
Jul 3, 2001
Roy Nichols, longtime guitarist for Merle Haggard, dies at Bakersfield’s Mercy Hospital. Nichols played on “Mama Tried” and “Big City,” among Haggard hits, plus Johnny Cash’s “Tennessee Flat-Top Box.” He also wrote Haggard’s “Street Singer”
Jul 3, 2007
Sax player Boots Randolph dies of a cerebral hemorrhage at Nashville’s Skyline Medical Center. He wrote his pop hit “Yakety Sax,” which Chet Atkins revamped as “Yakety Axe,” and appeared on hits by Elvis Presley, Brenda Lee and Johnny Cash
Jul 3, 2012
Actor Andy Griffith dies of a heart attack at his home in Manteo, North Carolina. A Grammy winner for the album “I Love To Tell The Story–25 Timeless Hymns,” he appeared in the video for Brad Paisley’s “Waitin’ On A Woman”