LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) – Sources report on Friday night that legendary country singer and songwriter Tom T. Hall died aged 85.
SiriusXM reported his death Friday night, with the Grand Ole Opry tweeting a photo in honor of the artist.
Born in Olive Hill, Kentucky, in 1936, Hall worked as a DJ and performed with his first band, the Kentucky Travelers, before joining the military in 1957.
Hall worked as a DJ again in the early 1960s, moving to Nashville in 1964 to write music, producing his first No. 1 hit.
Called “The Storyteller,” Tom T. Hall composed chart-topping music throughout the 1970s, being elected to the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1978.
Hall wrote the book on songwriting with his “Songwriter’s Handbook,” producing hundreds of hits throughout his career as “Ballad of Forty Dollars,” later recorded by Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings. Music he wrote for others has often advanced their careers, including Jeannie C. Riley’s “Harper Valley PTA” in 1968 and Alan Jackson’s “Little Bitty” in 1996.
In 1979, Hall brought a film crew from Nashville to Levelland and brought national eyes and ears to a first commercial music program at South Plains College with a mini-documentary on country and bluegrass music.
A concert hall and production center on the SPC campus named in his honor held a benefit concert in 1987, featuring professors from Hall and the SPC, the proceeds of which went to award the Tom Scholarship T. and Dixie Hall.
Even after retiring from the stage, Hall along with his wife and fellow songwriter Miss Dixie continued their methods of musical storytelling, advancing and inspiring the careers of bluegrass musicians for decades.
Hall was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2008, the International Bluegrass Hall of Fame in 2018, and the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2019.
Copyright 2021 KCBD. All rights reserved.