Faron Young and Marty Robbins newsletter — 23 April 2008

This is my periodic newsletter on “Live Fast, Love Hard: The Faron Young Story,” published last year by the University of Illinois Press, and on progress toward writing “Twentieth Century Drifter: The Life of Marty Robbins.” I’m up to the second chapter.

At the 10th annual Southern Kentucky Book Fest last weekend in Bowling Green, I met the authors of two other “Music in American Life” books published last year by the University of Illinois Press. They are Ellen Wright and Craig Havighurst. Ellen turned Roni Stoneman’s taped memories into an enjoyable book, “Pressing On: The Roni Stoneman Story.” Roni speaks well of Faron. Craig’s “Air Castle of the South” tells the history of WSM Radio.

Ray Griff sends this heartrending note from Canada, and I will forward to him any messages from readers: “After numerous biopsies, tests and medical examinations I have been diagnosed with throat cancer. It’s a tough one, but them’s the brakes. We had put our house up for sale and were planning on moving back to Nashville later in the year, but it looks like that’s not going to happen for a spell. We’ve pulled the house from the market and I’ve cancelled my concert dates for the summer. Your prayers and the prayers of your readers will be appreciated.” www.raygriff.com

Sharon Stich writes from South Dakota, “I am hoping you get to come thru Sioux Falls again so you can autograph Faron’s book for me. The book is sooooo AWESOME.”

Jean Earle in Great Britain says, “Many thanks for all of the newsletters, we have read and appreciated them all. Back in 1976 when we made our first visit to Nashville, we met a lovely couple Bill Rutledge and his wife Frankie. We told them our main reason for going to Music City was to hopefully see Faron. Bill straightaway said ‘I know Faron I will take you down to Pine Street to meet him’….What luck……he did and we were invited into Faron’s office and the rest as you know is history.! ! Now the reason that I am telling you all of this is, Bill had three sisters. Audrey who we grew to know and love …she now lives in Glendale Phoenix. June who lives in Nashville who worked for an Agency that dealt with all of the big C.M. stars. I believe she was well respected by all of the artists .Finally, Virginia, who worked with and for Marty Robbins. . . . Marty wrote a song in honour of his friendship with Virginia and the song can be found on one of his albums…’Virginia’.”

Jody Nix writes from Big Spring, Texas, “I have a poster that Marty signed for me when we got to work a show with him in Albuquerque New Mexico in the summer of 1974, what a great night.”

Vera Ross says, “I really enjoyed your book. I would like to know if there is any active Faron fan club. Also if anyone has put together a DVD(s) of all his TV appearances. Any information would be greatly appreciated.”

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