November 29 – This Day in Country Music

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1917
Born on this day in Rosewood, Kentucky was Merle Travis. The American country and Western singer, songwriter known for his hit “Sixteen Tons”. Travis’ guitar style became known as “Travis picking”, and his songs often discussed the life and exploitation of coal miners in the lyrics. Travis who was was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1970 and elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1977 died on October 20, 1983.

1959
At the 2nd Annual Grammy Awards held at Los Angeles and New York, (the first televised Grammy Award ceremony), Best Country & Western Performance went to Johnny Horton for “The Battle of New Orleans.”

1961
The Grand Ole Opry went to Carnegie Hall, for a special event which benefits the Musicians’ Aid Society. Patsy Cline, Grandpa Jones, Bill Monroe, Minnie Pearl, Marty Robbins, Jim Reeves, Faron Young and The Jordanaires all appeared.

1971
Merle Haggard was at #1 on the Country chart with “Daddy Frank (The Guitar Man)”. The first single from the album Let Me Tell You About a Song, became Haggard’s tenth #1.

1981
Kenny Rogers was at #1 on both the Country and Billboard charts with “Lady”. Written by Lionel Richie, it became the first record of the 1980s to chart on all four of Billboard magazine’s singles charts – country, Hot 100, adult contemporary and Top Black Singles.

1994
Brooks & Dunn’s 1991 album Brand New Man became the first album by a country duo to be certified quadruple-platinum. At the some time, their 1993 Hard Workin’ Man album goes triple-platinum.

2013
Taylor Swift became the first solo female artist in 20 years to headline a national stadium tour through Australia, (with the last being Madonna’s Girlie Show Tour in 1993), when she kicked off the Oceania leg of her Red World Tour. Swift performed to a capacity crowd of over 40,900 fans at the Allianz Stadium in Sydney, Australia, becoming the first female artist in history to sell out the stadium since it was opened in 1988.