Born on this day near near Kosse, Texas was James Robert Wills, better known as the American Western swing musician Bob Wills who is considered by music authorities as the co-founder of Western swing. Wills who was also a member of The Texas Playboys died on May 13, 1975.
Born on this day in in Higley, Arizona was country singer-songwriter Red Simpson, best known for his trucker-themed songs. His first #1 hit was with “Sam’s Place,” recorded by Buck Owens. Simpson died on January 8, 2016.
Born on this day in Redlands, California, was Skip Ewing. Artists who have recorded Ewing’s songs include Conway Twitty, George Jones, Kenny Rogers, George Strait, Willie Nelson, Kenny Chesney, Clint Black, Collin Raye, Diamond Rio, Reba McEntire, Tim McGraw, Trisha Yearwood, Randy Travis and Merle Haggard
Winners at the second Academy of Country Music Awards hosted by Lorne Green included: Top Female Vocalist of the Year, Bonnie Guitar, Top Male Vocalist of the Year, Merle Haggard, Top Vocal Group, Bonnie Owens and Merle Haggard, Most Promising Female Vocalist of the Year Cathie Taylor, Most Promising Male Vocalist of the Year, Billy Mize and Most Promising Vocal Group went to Bob Morris and Faye Hardin.
George Jones, in the midst of a comeback this year, was seriously injured when he crashed his Lexus into a bridge. It was later revealed that alcohol was a factor in the accident, and the singer pleaded guilty to drunk driving charges.
Singer Doug Supernaw was arrested in Bryan, Texas, and charged with public intoxication and fleeing from an officer. According to reports, the arrest came after Supernaw allegedly yelled obscenities and made obscene gestures while walking near an apartment complex. An off-duty police officer identified himself as he approached the singer and instructed Supernaw to sit on the curb while awaiting the arrival of another officer to arrest him. Before the patrol car arrived, Supernaw began walking away and then started running when the officer told him to stop.
During a US tour, Jerrod Niemann’s tour bus caught fire. He was unharmed and Niemann cridited fellow country singer Lee Brice for alerting him to the dangerous blaze giving him time to escape.
Stompin’ Tom Connors, died aged 77. The Canadian country singer from the 1970s, was best known for “The Hockey Song.”
A Nashville jury found bar owner Chris Ferrell guilty of second-degree murder after the 2013 shooting of Wayne Mills. The shooting occurred on the same night as a George Jones tribute concert at the nearby Bridgestone Arena, and as an after-party was wrapping up at the Pit and Barrel, a downtown saloon that had recently been made over for Spike TV’s reality series Bar Rescue. Ferrell claimed self-defense in the shooting, testifying he fired at Mills — the leader of the Wayne Mills Band — out of fear after the singer smashed a glass and threatened to kill the bar owner.