Charlie Louvin dies at 83

Country Music Hall of Fame and Grand Ole Opry member Charlie Louvin of the legendary Louvin Brothers lost his battle with pancreatic cancer today at the age of 83.

It was only last October, that a benefit was held in Bell Buckle, Tenn that raised over $20,000 to help Louvin with his medical bills.  The event was hosted by Louvin himself along with Valerie Smith & Liberty Pike.  “I loved Charlie Louvin, he was a loyal friend, a significant mentor and I really cared a great deal for him. I am going to miss so many things about him.  He was a true country music legend.” Valerie Smith.

That star-studded evening will not be forgotten as friends and fellow musicians paid tribute to their friend.  Louvin was joined on stage by Alison Krauss; Ron Block; Jerry Douglas; Viktor Krauss; Carmella Ramsey; Patsy and Donna Stoneman of the legendary Stoneman Family; Valerie Smith & Becky Buller; Wildwood Valley Boys; Jon Weisberger; Mike Scott; Ray Wix, Michael Cleveland, Mike Allen; Bobby Powell; Jeff Berry; Jeff Haley, Wilford Ray; Billy Kitchen; Kristi Morris Band; Shane Blackwell; Kraig Smith and more.

The Louvin Brothers (Charlie and Ira) had a string of country hits throughout the 1950s and early ’60s including “I Don’t Believe You Met My Baby” that hit #1 in 1955.  Their music heavily influenced such groups as the Everly Brothers, the Byrds and even the Beatles. 

After Ira’s tragic death in an auto accident, Charlie Louvin continued on in his solo career regularly hosting the Grand Ole Opry and the Ernest Tubb Midnight Jamboree on WSM 650 AM as well as touring throughout the country and around the world.

Charllie Louvin is survived by his wife Betty and their three sons.  A private funeral will be held Sunday, January 30, 2011.

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