Posted by themusicsover on October 28, 2009
August 12, 1927 – October 28, 2007
Porter Wagoner was a three-time Grammy award-winning country singer who was instantly recognizable thanks to his sparkly suits and towering blond coif. Wagoner signed to RCA Records during the early ’50, and in 1955, he was hired on to perform on ABC Television’s Ozark Jubilee, broadcasting out of Springfield, MO. Two years later, he moved to Nashville and became a member of the Grand Ol Opry. Over the next five decades, Wagoner charted 81 singles. Songs like “A Satisfied Mind,” “Green Grass of Home,” and “The Cold Hard Facts of Life” are some of the greatest recordings country music has ever known. In 1960, Wagoner began starring in his own nationally syndicated television show, The Porter Wagoner Show. The program ran for twenty years and helped launch the careers of Norma Jean, Mel Tillis, and most famously, Dolly Parton. It was Wagoner who Parton was writing about when she penned “I Will Always Love You,” which became a massive hit for Whitney Houston almost 20 years after it was first released by Parton. Wagoner continued to work well into the 21st century, recording and making guest appearances on television. In 2007 he released the Marty Stuart-produced Wagonmaster, the critically acclaimed album that helped him experience a renaissance much in the same way Johnny Cash had in the mid ’90s. That same year, Wagoner opened for the White Stripes at Madison Square Garden. Porter Wagoner died of lung cancer at the age of 80.
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