March 2 – This Day in Country Music


Hank Williams recorded “You’re Gonna Change (Or I’m Gonna Leave)” at Castle Studio, Nashville with Fred Rose producing. It was released as a single on MGM Records in September 1949 and reached #4 on the country singles chart.

Born on this day, was Larry Stewart, country music singer, best known for his role as lead singer of the country pop band Restless Heart. In 1993, Stewart left the band for a solo career, recording four solo albums and charting eight singles on the Billboard Hot Country Singles charts before reuniting with Restless Heart in 2002. His highest-charting solo single was “Alright Already”, which peaked at #5 in 1993.

Born on this day in Meridian, Mississippi, was Ty Herndon, country music singer who scored the 1995 US #1 hit single “What Mattered Most”. He later scored two other chat toppers: “Living in a Moment” and “It Must Be Love”.

Country music winners at the 16th Annual Grammy Awards included; Best Country Vocal Performance, Female – Olivia Newton-John for “Let Me Be There”, Best Country Vocal Performance, Male – Charlie Rich for “Behind Closed Doors”, Best Country Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group – Rita Coolidge & Kris Kristofferson for “From the Bottle to the Bottom”, Best Country Instrumental Performance – Steve Mandell & Eric Weissberg for “Dueling Banjos” and Best Country Song – Kenny O’Dell (songwriter) for “Behind Closed Doors” performed by Charlie Rich.

The Public Broadcasting Company telecasted the Grand Ole Opry for the third time. The show featured Tom T. Hall, Ronnie Milsap, Roy Acuff, Hank Snow, Minnie Pearl, Porter Wagoner, Billy Grammer, George Hamilton IV, Marty Robbins, and many others. Sissy Spacek also appeared with Loretta Lynn, promoting the new movie Coal Miner’s Daughter, which opened the following week.

Warner Bros. released the Trio album, by Dolly Parton, Linda Ronstadt and Emmylou Harris. The album sold over 4 million copies and also received several Grammy nominations and other awards. The three singers released the follow up album, Trio II in 1999.

Shania Twain released her third studio album Come On Over which became the best-selling country music album, by a female act. To date, the album has sold more than 40 million copies worldwide, shipped over 20 million copies in the United States, and in the UK it has sold over 3.3 million. The album debuted at #1 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart and stayed there for 50 non-consecutive weeks, staying in the Top Ten for 151 weeks.