Born on this day in Morrisville, Missouri Winford was Wynn Stewart, the country music performer who was one of the progenitors of the Bakersfield sound and an inspiration to such greats as Buck Owens and Merle Haggard. Stewart scored the 1967 #1 hit “It’s Such a Pretty World Today”. Stewart suddenly died of a heart attack on July 17, 1985.
Born on this day in Pontypridd, South Wales, UK, was Tom Jones, singer who scored the 1977 US #1 Country hit “Say You’ll Stay Until Tomorrow”. Jones is famous for his version of “Green, Green Grass of Home” which was a world-wide hit in 1966.
Born on this day in Cooper City, Florida, was Larry Boone, American country music artist. His highest-charting single, “Don’t Give Candy to a Stranger”, reached #10 in 1988. Boone has also co-written several singles for other country music artists, including a #1 single for Kathy Mattea, “(Burnin’ Old Memories)”, and Top Ten hits for Don Williams, Tracy Lawrence, Rick Trevino and Lonestar.
The Johnny Cash Show premiered on ABC TV; from the Grand Ole Opry with special guest Bob Dylan and the regular cast, Tennessee Three, June Carter and Carter Family, Statler Brothers, and Carl Perkins, stepping in for Luther Perkins, (who has just died accidentally in house fire). Bob Wootton became a permanent replacement in Cash’s band, and a mainstay for the next three decades.
Toby Keith was at #1 on the country charts with Honkytonk University. “As Good as I Once Was” was the album’s biggest hit, topping the Billboard Hot Country Songs charts for six weeks. Due to the closure of DreamWorks shortly afterwards, however, “Big Blue Note” was released on Keith’s Show Dog Nashville label, going on to peak at #5.
George Strait ended his touring career in style with his final performance at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The show shattered a Billboard Boxscore mark for largest single-show attendance at a US stadium when 104,793 fans packed the home of the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys to see the singer on the final date of his farewell tour Cowboy Rides Away.