9 November 2005

FARON FIFTY-FOUR YEARS AGO: Faron dropped out of Centenary Methodist College in Shreveport on November 1, 1951, before completing his first term. He had enrolled as a business major and his classes included Spanish, physical education, algebra, and American history. Faron’s father, Harlan, had graduated from Meadows Draughn Business School, and he wanted his son to get a college education. Faron wanted to attend school outside of Shreveport, but Harlan wouldn’t let him. “He wanted to make me come home and feed them cows every day,” Faron said. “That’s when I decided I done had enough of all these cows. I wanted to find something to do to get away from Shreveport.”

Faron’s first solo performance on the Louisiana Hayride occurred October 13, 1951. His hair had been cut off as a college initiation ritual, and he later said, “I was embarrassed, so Webb slapped that great big ten-gallon hat on me when I went on stage, and I looked like a rabbit sitting under a collard leaf.” He was Webb Pierce’s frontman at the time. The other Southern Valley Boys were Tillman Franks on upright bass, Floyd Cramer on piano, Jimmy Day on steel guitar, Tommy Bishop on lead guitar, and Uncle Jimmie Burrage on drums. When Faron dropped out of college to pursue music fulltime, he asked his dad for a year and said he would go back to school “if I don’t do something within a year.” Two months later, he signed his Capitol recording contract.

FAN CLUB: Bobby Jones of Burt, Michigan, wants to start a memorial fan club for Faron. Anyone interested in helping her with the venture please send an e-mail to BJones3328@aol.com.

WEB SITE: The Johnson sisters have redesigned the forum section of their International Fan Club Organization (IFCO) web site at http://www.ifco.org/. IFCO is dedicated to promoting country music and other popular music genres, artists, fan clubs and fan interests worldwide. Forum boards are provided for each affiliated artist and fan club. The forums are totally new as of 10/03/05, and all users must re-register.

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