April 17 – This Day in Country Music

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1970
Jim Reeves was at #1 on the Country singles chart with “He’ll Have to Go”. Reeves recorded what became one of country music’s biggest hits ever after listening to a version recorded by singer Billy Brown. The track was first released to country radio as the B-side of the intended hit, “In a Mansion Stands My Love.” However, “Mansion” failed to catch on, and disc jockeys began playing the B-side instead where it remained at the top of the charts for 14 consecutive weeks.

1970
Johnny Cash played at the White House with June Carter and The Statler Brothers for President Nixon, who requested that he played “A Boy Named Sue.” Cash declined Nixon’s request to do Merle Haggard’s “Okie From Muskogee” but did perform “Folsom Prison Blues”, “Peace In The Valley” and “What Is Truth.”

1976
Eddie Rabbitt scored his first #1 country single with “Drinkin’ My Baby (Off My Mind)”, the first of fifteen solo #1 country hits for the singer, songwriter.

1985
Alabama released “40 Hour Week (For a Livin’)” which went to #1 on the Country charts. The track was the seventeenth in a string of 21 consecutive #1 singles in as many releases, a string that spanned from 1980 through 1987.

2000
Lonestar released “What About Now”, the fourth single from their 1999 album, Lonely Grill, which went on to spend four weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks.

2001
Brooks & Dunn scored their third US #1 album with Steers & Stripes. The album produced three #1 singles; “Ain’t Nothing ’bout You”, “Only in America” and “The Long Goodbye.”

2004
Country music duo The Judds made their Grand Ole Opry debut, performing “Flies On The Butter (You Can’t Go Home Again)” and “Grandpa (Tell Me ‘Bout The Good Old Days).”

2007
Tim McGraw was at #1 on the Country charts with Let It Go his eleventh album. The album entered the US Billboard 200 at #1 and produced seven Top 20 chart singles.

2014
After battling Alzheimer’s disease since being diagnosed with the illness in early 2011, Glen Campbell was moved into a care facility after his health experienced a setback.