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Johnny Horton

Updated on August 30, 2017

Country Western Rockabilly Singer

Johnny Horton - a voice that is crisp and offers up one heck of a ballad. I had not thought about him for years but recently ran across one of my old tapes and had to relive a wonderful voice. An interesting man. A man who had a premonition about his own dearth (see below). I believe the music industry lost a fantastic voice when they lost Horton.

Premonitions of his death

All was not well, as Johnny kept having premonitions of his death. He had started telling friends and family that he would soon die at the hands of a drunk. He asked his sister to pray and care for Billie Jean and their girls, and he had his mother visit for the week. He canceled his scheduled attendance at the premiere of North To Alaska and tried to back out of his next gig, a club date at the Skyline club in Austin, Texas on November 4. A big star, which he had now become, should never have been playing such a engagement for such little reward ($800), but the common consensus is that he was broke again, and together with Franks' medical bills for his recent hernia operation, any money was welcome.

Tommy Tomlinson flew in from Nashville where he was cutting a duet album with Jerry Kennedy (Tom and Jerry). Johnny used the morning to make arrangements to go duck hunting with Claude King once he'd returned from Austin and he also phoned Johnny Cash for a chat. Cash was stoned and didn't take the call, and has always regretted it. That afternoon, as he went to collect Franks, he kissed Billie Jean goodbye in the same spot Hank had done seven years earlier, and cuddled his two daughters. Against his wife's wishes, Franks got out off his sick bed and off they headed for Austin.

When they got to the Skyline, Horton stayed in his dressing room, convinced that a drunk would kill him if he hung around the bar. After the show, they started the 354 kilometres (220 mi) journey back to Shreveport. Tomlinson was in the back, observing that Horton was driving too fast - Franks was asleep in the front. About 2AM, near Milano, Texas they were crossing a bridge when a truck came at them, hitting both sides of the bridge before plunging into Horton's Cadillac. He had practised avoiding head-on collisions, by driving into verges, but on the narrow bridge he'd had no opportunity. He was still breathing when he was pulled out of the Caddie but died on the way to hospital. The nineteen year old truck driver, James Davis was intoxicated. Johnny Horton had, in fact, died at the hands of a drunk. It is believed that a sun visor rod had pierced Horton's skull. Franks suffered head injuries and young Tomlinson had multiple leg fractures and nine months later, had to have his left leg amputated. Ironically, Davis was virtually unscathed.

per the Wikipedia

Young Abe Lincoln (Make A Tall, Tall Man)

Well, he lived in a cabin way down by the creek

He ran through the dust in his bare feet

But they didn't know that one fine day

That he would rule this U.S.A.

And be the best leader in all the land.

Yes, young Abe Lincoln make a tall tall man.

Yes, young Abe Lincoln make a tall tall man.

lyrics continued with song below

Did you know who Johnny Horton was before this lens?

What's Your Comment!

Every heard of Horton? Like his music?

(April 30, 1925 - - November 5, 1960)

The Battle of New Orleans - Johnny Horton

Honky Tonk Man - Johnny Horton

Comanche (The Brave Horse) - Johnny Horton

General George Custer 7th US Calvary

Oh my, I was afraid you would not stop by!

MY GUESTS - Thanks for coming.

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    • blue22d profile image
      Author

      blue22d 5 years ago

      Thanks for stopping by. I miss his sound!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Super lens about a great recording artist!