MusicRow Magazine: LifeNotes: Bluegrass Song Great Dixie Hall Passes

• January 19, 2015 • 
 
Pictured (L-R): Perry, Dixie Hall, and Jody Williams. Photo: Alan Mayor
Pictured (L-R): Perry Howard, Dixie Hall, and Jody Williams. Photo: Alan Mayor

Award-winning bluegrass songwriter and former top country-music journalist Dixie Hall has passed away at age 80.
The wife of Country Music Hall of Fame inductee Tom T. Hall died on Friday, January 15, following a long illness. She and her husband won Songwriter of the Year honors from SPBGMA (the Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music in America) for 10 consecutive years. She also co-wrote songs with Jeanette Williams, Billy Smith and Country Music Hall of Fame member Maybelle Carter, among others.
Dixie Hall founded the record label Blue Circle Records, the publishing company Good Home Grown Music and a recording studio. In the 1960s, she was the editor of country music’s biggest periodical.
Born Iris Violet May Lawrence in a town near Manchester, England, she wrote poetry as a youngster. During the 1950s, she became a country-music fan and began working as an overseas representative for Tex Ritter, Starday Records and other Nashvillians.
She moved to Music City in 1961 and was adopted by the legendary Maybelle Carter. Iris Lawrence adopted “Dixie Dean” as her Nashville pen name. She and Carter co-wrote the Johnny Cash songs “A Letter From Home” and “Troublesome Waters.”

Bobby Cyrus with Tom T. and Dixie Hall. Photo: Bev Moser
Bobby Cyrus with Tom T. and Dixie Hall. Photo: Bev Moser

Also as “Dixie Dean,” she co-wrote the 1965 Dave Dudley hit “Truck Drivin’ Son-of-a-Gun.” Under this same byline, she wrote celebrity profiles for the Music City News fan magazine and eventually became its editor. She met Tom T. Hall at a BMI awards banquet in 1964. They married in 1968. For many years, she raised and trained award-winning basset hounds while her husband became a country superstar.
Dixie Hall reactivated her songwriting in the 1990s. Tom T. Hall wanted to retire, but she urged him to continue writing by becoming his collaborator. This is also when she established their record label, song-publishing company and recording studio, all headquartered at their Williamson County home, Fox Hollow.
She subsequently wrote or co-wrote more than 500 recorded bluegrass songs. They were sung by a who’s-who of the genre, including The Grascals, Special Consensus, Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice, Don Rigsby, Josh Williams, Lorraine Jordan & Carolina Road, James Monroe, Dale Ann Bradley, Chris Jones & The Night Drivers, Little Roy Lewis and Paul Williams.
She produced the all-female ensemble Daughters of Bluegrass. The group’s Pickin’ Like a Girl record was totally comprised of Dixie Hall songs and won an award from the IBMA (International Bluegrass Music Association) in 2010.
Carlene Carter included Dixie’s co-written “Troublesome Waters” on her 2014 CD Carter Girl. Miranda Lambert placed Dixie’s co-written “All That’s Left” on her million-selling 2014 CMA Album of the Year winner Platinum.
Dixie Hall’s funeral will be private, according to The Tennessean. Tom T. Hall reportedly plans a celebration of his wife’s life and music at a later date.

Tennessee State Museum: Late Autumn Newsletter



Photo Credit:  Bev Moser

MUSICROW MAGAZINE: In Pictures: American Country Countdown Awards


• December 16, 2014 • 
 
 
Reba  American Country Countdown Awards 2014  Moments By Moser  110
Reba McEntire with her Nash Icon honor. Photo: Bev Moser/Moments By Moser
Kix Brooks  American Country Countdown Awards 2014  Moments By Moser  65
Kix Brooks. Photo: Bev Moser/Moments By Moser
Luke Bryan  American Country Countdown Awards 2014  Moments By Moser  115
Luke Bryan rejoices in his win at the ACCAs. Photo: Bev Moser/Moments By Moser
Luke Bryan American Country Countdown Awards 2014  Moments By Moser  92
Miranda Lambert. Photo: Bev Moser/Moments By Moser
Jason Aldean  Brittney Kerr American Country Countdown Awards 2014  Moments By Moser  83
Jason Aldean. Photo: Bev Moser/Moments By Moser
Carrie Underwood American Country Countdown Awards 2014  Moments By Moser  44
Carrie Underwood. Photo: Bev Moser/Moments By Moser
Kip Moore American Country Countdown Awards 2014  Moments By Moser  107
Kip Moore. Photo: Bev Moser/Moments By Moser
Lady Antebellum  American Country Countdown Awards 2014  Moments By Moser  81
Lady Antebellum. Photo: Bev Moser/Moments By Moser
Brett Eldredge  American Country Countdown Awards 2014  Moments By Moser  120
Brett Eldredge. Photo: Bev Moser, Moments By Moser
Cole Swindell  American Country Countdown Awards 2014  Moments By Moser  61
Cole Swindell. Photo: Bev Moser, Moments By Moser

CLICK HERE to see full list of winners.

MUSICROW Mgazine: Dawn Sears Event Raises $100k+ for Ingram Cancer Center

• December 4, 2014 • 
Pictured (L-R): Dr. Leora Horn, Dawn Sears, Dr. Pierre Massion, Reba McEntire. Photo: Bev Moser
Pictured (L-R): Dr. Leora Horn, Dawn Sears, Dr. Pierre Massion, Reba McEntire. Photo: Bev Moser

The tallies are in for the Dawn Sears & Friends Benefit for Lung Cancer Research held on Nov. 30 at the Depot Square in Gallatin, Tenn.
Over $100,000 was raised for the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, where Sears is receiving treatment for the disease. Sears’ physician Dr. Leora Horn and Ingram Professor of Cancer Research Dr. Pierre Massion both took turns at the podium to talk about research while commenting on Sears’ own perseverance.
Performers included Reba McEntire, Riders In The Sky and The Time Jumpers, the band Sears is a part of alongside her husband Kenny Sears and country stalwart Vince Gill. Olympic gold-medalist Scott Hamilton emceed the event. Sears attended the show and also spoke on behalf of lung cancer research.

COPD Foundation: Phil Everly Concert Benefit Featuring Paul Simon





Dear Nashville Community,

I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks for your generosity at our recent Phil Everly Concert Benefit featuring Paul Simon.  

With this being our first event within Nashville, we were overwhelmed with the outpouring of support from your community. Because of your contributions, the event raised $120,000, all of which will go towards the Foundation's mission of preventing and curing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and improving the lives of all people affected by COPD.

We would like to thank Patti Everly whose steadfast commitment to raising awareness of COPD and honoring the memory of her husband Phil provided the impetus for making this concert a reality.

The evening would not have been such a success without the exquisite performance by Paul Simon. Royce Risser and Mike Dungan lent their voices to a very profitable live auction with "Little Miss Dynamite" Brenda Lee adding an effervescence and playfulness to the entire event. Our sincere gratitude to Bill Mayne for everything he did to make this event a success.    

The benefit could not have occurred without Sylvia Roberts' generosity in donating her home for this exceptional event. 

Above all, thank you for supporting the COPD Foundation. We look forward to our continuing relationship with you.   

Sincerely,
 
John W. Walsh
President and Co-Founder, COPD Foundation

MUSICROW: Lee Brice Receives Gold, Platinum Honors From NMPA


• November 6, 2014 • 
 
Lee Brice was honored recently for two of his hit singles, garnering with a platinum award for “I Don’t Dance” and a gold award for “Parking Lot Party,” during a meeting at NMPA’s Curb Publishing headquarters in Nashville. Brice’s publisher is Curb Music Publishing.
NMPA president/CEO David Israelite was on hand to present the honors to Brice.

Pictured (L-R): Drew Alexander, David Israelite, Lee Brice, Mike Curb) Photo: NMPA/Bev Moser.
Pictured (L-R): Drew Alexander, David Israelite, Lee Brice, Mike Curb. Photo: NMPA/Bev Moser.

Pictured (L-R): Lee Brice, David Israelite and Curb Publishing executives. Photo: NMPA/Bev Moser.
Pictured (L-R): Lee Brice, David Israelite and Curb Publishing executives. Photo: NMPA/Bev Moser.

CMT NEWS: Paul Craft, Master Songwriter, Dies in Nashville

Hits Include "Dropkick Me, Jesus," "Brother Jukebox" and "Hank Williams, You Wrote My Life"
Paul Craft (front row), Gretchen Peters, Tom Douglas and John Anderson
Paul Craft (front row), Gretchen Peters, Tom Douglas and John Anderson
Photo Credit: Bev Moser
Paul Craft, a prolific songwriter whose hits include Bobby Bare's "Dropkick Me, Jesus" and Mark Chesnutt's "Brother Jukebox," died Saturday (Oct. 18) at a Nashville hospital following years of ill health. He was 76.

A native of Memphis, Tenn., Craft was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame on Oct. 5. According to The Tennessean, Nashville's daily newspaper, he showed up briefly at Nashville's Music City Center to have his photo taken with fellow inductees Gretchen Peters, Tom Douglas and John Anderson and was immediately taken to St. Thomas Hospital.

During the induction ceremony, his longtime friend Layng Martine Jr., a Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame member himself, noted Craft was not only a member of Mensa, the "genius" circle, but also a jokester who had composed single-handedly such weird hits as the outrageously metaphoric "Drop Kick Me, Jesus" and "It's Me Again, Margaret," Ray Stevens' hit about an unrepentant obscene phone caller. Bare told the crowd former President Bill Clinton once cited "Drop Kick Me, Jesus" as his favorite song.

Singer-songwriter Thomas Rhett paid tribute to Craft at the ceremony by performing a medley that included "Brother Jukebox" and "Hank Williams, You Wrote My Life," the latter a hit for Moe Bandy.

Craft, whose credits include T. Graham Brown's "Come as You Were" and Gail Davies' "Blue Heartache," also had more than 200 bluegrass cuts, including the Osborne Brothers' "Midnight Flyer" and the Seldom Scene's "Keep Me From Blowing Away." In 1974, the Eagles released "Midnight Flyer" on their On the Border album and Linda Ronstadt issued "Keep Me From Blowing Away" on her breakthrough album, Heart Like a Wheel.

A gifted guitarist and banjo player, Craft's instrumentals were recorded by the likes of Chet Atkins and Jerry Reed, and he also served a tenure as the banjo player in Jimmy Martin's Sunny Mountain Boys. Atkins signed Craft to RCA Records in the '70s and produced several singles that had marginal chart success.