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Johnny, Sammi, Willie & Waylon

Several things happened on this date in Country music:

1959 – The Western series “The Rebel” was aired for the first time on TV. The show would run until Sept 1961, with the theme song being sung by Johnny Cash.

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Johnny and June

1968 – Johnny Cash proposed to tour partner June Carter during a concert in London, Ontario. She said yes. The couple married on March 1, 1968, in Franklin, Kentucky and had one child together, John Carter Cash, born March 3, 1970. Cash and Carter continued to work together and tour for 35 years until Carter’s death in 2003. Cash died four months later.

1971 – Sammi Smith was at #1 on the US Country chart with her country – pop crossover hit, “Help Me Make It Through the Night”. Smith’s version won a Grammy Award for Best Country Music Female performance. Written by Kris Kristofferson and released on his 1970 album Kristofferson, he later stated that he got the inspiration for the song from an magazine interview with Frank Sinatra. When asked what he believed in, Frank replied, “Booze, broads, or a bible…whatever helps me make it through the night.”

1976 – “Good Hearted Woman” by Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson was at #1 on the country chart. In 1969, Jennings and Nelson were staying in a motel in Fort Worth, Texas. Jennings was inspired to write the song after reading an advertisement that promoted Ike and Tina Turner. Jennings joined Nelson during a poker game and told him about the idea and the singers completed the song while Nelson’s wife, Connie Koepke, wrote it down.

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