The Grand Ole Opry started as the WSM Barn Dance in the new fifth-floor radio studio of the National Life & Accident Insurance Company in downtown Nashville. Some of the bands regularly on the show during its early days included Bill Monroe, the Possum Hunters (with Dr. Humphrey Bate), the Fruit Jar Drinkers, the Crook Brothers, the Binkley Brothers’ Dixie Clodhoppers, Uncle Dave Macon, Sid Harkreader, Deford Bailey, Fiddlin’ Arthur Smith, and the Gully Jumpers.
Born on this day in Waco, Texas, A.L. was “Doodle” Owens, country music songwriter and singer He had a long songwriting partnership with Dallas Frazier, with whom he wrote “All I Have to Offer You (Is Me)” (1969), “(I’m So) Afraid of Losing You Again” (1969), I Can’t Believe That You’ve Stopped Loving Me”(1970) and “Then Who Am I” (1974), all #1 country hits for Charley Pride. In the 1980s Owens wrote many songs with fellow songwriter Dennis Knutson for George Jones and other artists. Owens died on Nov 28 1999.
“Once a Day,” by Connie Smith, started an eight-week stay at #1 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart. To date, it is the longest-running chart topper by a solo female act and was the first debut single by a female country artist to reach #1. The song also held the record for the most weeks spent at #1 by a female country artist until it was surpassed by by Taylor Swift’s “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” in December 2012.
Charlie Rich recorded “Behind Closed Doors” which went on to give Rich his first #1 hit on the country charts. Written by Kenny O’Dell, some radio stations banned the record initially as being too racy.
Garth Brooks was at #1 on the US Country chart with Scarecrow, his ninth studio album. Singles released from this album include “Beer Run (B Double E Double Are You In?)” a duet with George Jones, “Wrapped Up in You”, and “Squeeze Me In” a duet with Trisha Yearwood. It was the last album by Brooks before his ten-year hiatus