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March 1

Four companies merged to become Mercury Records in 1947. The label’s country division went on to represent such acts as Tom T. Hall, Shania Twain, Kathy Mattea, Billy Ray Cyrus, Flatt & Scruggs and Reba McEntire.

Hank Williams recorded Mind Your Own Business, Honky Tonk Blues, You’re Gonna Change (Or I’m Gonna Leave) and Lost Highway at Nashville’s Castle Recording Studio in 1949. He recorded the final version of Honky Tonk Blues 33 months later.

The Everly Brothers recorded Bye Bye Love and I Wonder If I Care As Much at the Methodist Television, Radio and Film Commission in Nashville in 1957.

Following his criticism of management at WSM Radio, Marty Robbins was fired by the Grand Ole Opry in 1958, which referred to him as a “prima donna” in an official statement, after his performance on the Saturday evening show.

Johnny Bond recorded 10 Little Bottles at the Starday Studios in Nashville in 1962. Harlan Howard, Jan Howard, Grandpa Jones, Archie Campbell and Justin Tubb were all on hand to watch the session.

Construction began on the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville in 1966. Among the artists whose likeness will be housed there: Willie Nelson, Hank Williams, George Jones, Jimmie Rodgers, Ernest Tubb, Johnny Cash and The Carter Family.

Johnny Cash married June Carter at the Methodist Church in Franklin, KY in 1968. Carter’s Ring Of Fire co-writer Merle Kilgore was best man. Carlene Carter’s $1-a-week allowance, earned by mowing the lawn was raised to $10-a-week.

Songwriters Curly Putman and Bobby Braddock took a demo tape of D-I-V-O-R-C-E to record producer Billy Sherrill in Nashville in 1968. Three weeks later, Sherrill produced the song for Tammy Wynette.

Columbia released Lynn Anderson’s Rose Garden album in 1971.

Songwriters Billy Sherrill and Norro Wilson won Best Country Song in 1975, for the Charlie Rich hit A Very Special Love Song, during the 17th annual Grammy Awards at the Uris Theater in New York.

Marty Robbins hosted the 11th annual Academy Of Country Music awards on ABC-TV in 1976. Loretta Lynn won four trophies and Conway Twitty picked up three in the show, taped 10 days earlier at the Hollywood Palladium.

Waylon Jennings reached the top of the Billboard country chart with the Rodney Crowell-penned I Ain’t Living Long Like This.

RCA released Alabama’s album The Closer You Get in 1983.


Mark Chesnutt signed a recording contract with MCA Records in 1990. This was his first hit (It went to #3 on the charts)


Arista released Radney Foster’s Nobody Wins, featuring background vocals by Mary Chapin Carpenter in 1993.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY

Songwriter, bass player and radio talent Cliffie Stone was born in Stockton, CA in 1917. He played on numerous Capitol hits and co-wrote Divorce Me C.O.D. and So Round! So Firm! So Fully Packed! Stone joined the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1989.

Arlene Harden, of The Harden Trio, was born in England, AR in 1945. The group earned a hit in 1966 with the cheery Tippy Toeing. As a solo act, she scored another by covering Roy Orbison’s Oh, Pretty Woman, retitled Lovin’ Man (Oh Pretty Woman).

Clinton Gregory was born in Martinsville, VA in 1966. A singer and fiddler, he managed a minor hit in 1991 with (If It Weren’t For Country Music) I’d Go Crazy.

Janis Oliver was born in Torrance, CA in 1954. She joined younger sister Kristine to form Sweethearts Of The Rodeo, who rose in the 1980s behind a rockabilly-tinged sound. By that time, her last name had changed, following her marriage to Vince Gill.

Actress Catherine Bach was born in Warren, OH in 1954. She appeared in the CBS series The Dukes Of Hazzard as Daisy Duke. Her character was referenced in the 2002 Mark Wills hit 19 Somethin’.