Archive for December, 2010

Faron Young and Marty Robbins newsletter — 29 December 2010

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

Marty Robbins wrapped up the year of 1980 with a three-performance New Year’s Eve show in Evansville, Indiana. After returning home to Nashville, he experienced chest pains. “I thought it was just an extra bad case of indigestion,” he said later, “because I’ve had a heart attack, and it was nothing like the one in ’69.” That one had required triple-bypass surgery in January 1970. Now, 11 years later, he waited several days before calling his doctor for an appointment the next day. The doctor insisted he come to the office immediately. “I had on a big cowboy hat, a straw hat, I had on boots and jeans and a big jacket like real cowboys wear, y’know,” Marty recalled. The doctor checked him and called an ambulance. Marty thought he was kidding until ambulance attendants rolled in a stretcher. “Doctor Ewers,” Marty said, “I’m not dressed for the hospital.” The doctor insisted he get in the ambulance. Marty felt embarrassed to be wheeled through the waiting room on his back, dressed in his outdoor clothes with his hat lying across his chest. He spent almost two weeks in the hospital and another six weeks at home before resuming his touring schedule. (more…)

Faron Young and Marty Robbins newsletter — 8 December 2010

Wednesday, December 8th, 2010

This evening 28 years ago (also a Wednesday) Marty Robbins died, a week after being hospitalized during his final heart attack. I’d known from news reports that he was in serious condition, but his death still came as a complete shock. He’d survived heart attacks and car crashes, and I fully expected him to survive this. So did everyone else, I’m sure. He was 57.
Fourteen years ago tomorrow, Faron Young finally gave in to his long-running depression. His friends were used to his suicide threats, which he treated as jokes, and no one realized he wasn’t joking. Looking back, it’s easy to see he showed classic signs of a depressed man heading for suicide. He died 24 hours after shooting himself. He was 64.
These were the only two singers whose deaths ever propelled me to send sympathy cards to their unknown families. Who could have dreamed I would someday write their biographies? (more…)