Country Music Hall of Fame legend Tom T. Hall died on Friday, August 20th at his Franklin home. He was 85.
Known as “The Storyteller” for his songwriting skills, his most known hits were “Harper Valley P.T.A” “That’s How I Got To Memphis,”, Homecoming,” and “(Old Dogs, Children, and) Watermelon Wine,” “A Week in a Country Jail,” “I Love,” “Country Is”, “I Care,” and many more.
His songs have been recorded by Johnny Cash, Alan Jackson, Waylon Jennings, George Jones, and Loretta Lynn. Hall was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2008 and was a Grand Ole Opry member since 1971.
Hall was born in Olive Hill, Kentucky, and moved to Nashville in 1964. He married Dixie Deen in 1968 who died in 2015.
Artists reactions to hearing the news about Tom T. Hall.
“Tom T. Hall’s masterworks vary in plot, tone and tempo, but they are bound by his ceaseless and unyielding empathy for the triumphs and losses of others, He wrote without judgment or anger, offering a rhyming journalism of the heart that sets his compositions apart from any other writer. His songs meant the world to Bobby Bare, Johnny Cash, George Jones and other greats, and those songs will continue to speak to generations. He was a storyteller, a philosopher, a whiskey maker, a novelist, a poet, a painter, a benefactor, a letter writer, a gift giver, a gentleman farmer and many more things. My bet is that we won’t see the likes of him again, but if we do I’ll be first in line for tickets to the show.”– Kyle Young, CEO Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
My second concert (at the age of 5 !!) was Tom T. Hall. What a gifted literary musical artist he was. Peace be with all of his friends, family, and admirers today. Thank you Mr. Hall- Keith Urban
I worked with Tom on several occasions, and he was always a gentleman. He was a very interesting songwriter and a fun person to be around. He contributed a great deal to country music and he got to live a full life.” – Don McLean
“Back in 1978 when we sang at Mama Maybelle Carter’s funeral a saddened and shaken Johnny Cash walked up to the podium and asked Tom T. Hall to stand with him… Johnny said, “I draw strength from you, Tom!” Thank you Tom T. Hall for the songs and the strength you provided to so many … Rest Easy now and draw strength from the loving arms of Jesus… until the day.” – Joe Bonsall, The Oak Ridge Boys
“Tom T. Hall was a one-of-a-kind human being. He left us with a body of songs the like of which we writers can only dream of. His records were hits. A successful author, his books were always a fun read. He made us laugh and cry. He was a Hall of Famer and will be deeply missed. That is the mark of true greatness. Rest easy, old storyteller.”– T. Graham Brow