1958 in country music

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This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in the year 1958.

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Events[edit]

  • January 1 — Johnny Cash performs at San Quentin Prison. One of the audience members is Merle Haggard, in the midst of a two-year prison term for burglary.
  • February — Struggling singer-songwriter Don Gibson finally gets a career break when his first major hit, "Oh Lonesome Me" reaches No. 1 on Billboard's "C&W Best Sellers in Stores" and "Most Played C&W by Jockeys" charts. The flip side of the single is "I Can't Stop Loving You," which went on to be recorded by more than 700 times. Gibson is considered by many to be one of the originators of the Nashville Sound, a form of country music that uses pop music-styled arrangements (such as orchestrated strings) rather than traditional honky-tonk sounds.
  • March — BMI opens its Nashville office, headed by Frances Preston.
  • March 24 — Elvis Presley is inducted into the United States Army at the Memphis Draft Board, thus beginning his two years of service.
  • May — The fledgling career of Jerry Lee Lewis is rocked by scandal when his marriage to second cousin Myra Gale Brown becomes public. A British tour is cancelled, and Lewis' career goes into decline until 1968, when he begins concentrating on country music.
  • October 13 — Billboard discontinues the "C&W Best Sellers in Stores" and "Most Played C&W by Jockeys" charts. Starting with the October 20 issue, there is one all-encompassing "Hot C&W Sides" chart. The new chart has 30 positions, and "City Lights" by Ray Price is the first No. 1 song.
  • November — The Country Music Association is founded to promote country music. Harry Stone, the former station manager of WSM, is named executive director.
  • November — Conway Twitty begins a remarkable career ... in rock and roll, with his hit, "It's Only Make Believe." The song – which contains all the Twitty hallmarks – skyrockets to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the fall, and begins a string of hits that continues through the early 1960s. Twitty makes the switch to country in the mid-1960s, and the rest is history. Although "... Make Believe" is never a country hit, the song has become a country standard in the years since Twitty became a country giant.
  • December 26 — Johnny Cash tops a country and western concert at the Showboat Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada; also appearing are Tex Ritter and the Sons of the Pioneers.[1]

Top hits of the year[edit]

Number one hits[edit]

United States[edit]

(as certified by Billboard)

Date Single Name Artist Wks. No.1 Spec. Note
January 6 The Story of My Life Marty Robbins 4
January 6 Great Balls of Fire Jerry Lee Lewis 2
February 3 Ballad of a Teenage Queen Johnny Cash 10
April 14 Oh Lonesome Me / I Can't Stop Loving You Don Gibson 8 [1], [2], [A]
May 26 Just Married Marty Robbins 2 [2]
June 2 All I Have to Do is Dream The Everly Brothers 3
June 23 Guess Things Happen That Way Johnny Cash 8
July 21 Alone With You Faron Young 13
August 25 Blue Blue Day Don Gibson 2
September 8 Bird Dog The Everly Brothers 6 [B]
October 20 City Lights Ray Price 13
Notes
  • 1^ No. 1 song of the year, as determined by Billboard.
  • 2^ Song dropped from No. 1 and later returned to top spot.
  • A^ First Billboard No. 1 hit for that artist.
  • B^ Last Billboard No. 1 hit for that artist.
Note: Through October 13, several songs were simultaneous No. 1 hits on the separate "Most Played C&W by Jockeys" and "C&W Best Sellers in Stores" charts. Only one No. 1 per week is possible starting with the "Hot C&W Sides" chart, which begins October 20.

Other major hits[edit]

US Single Artist
8 All Grown Up Johnny Horton
4 All Over Again Johnny Cash
3 Anna Marie Jim Reeves
13 Are You Really Mine? Jimmie Rodgers
10 Believe What You Say Ricky Nelson
4 Big River Johnny Cash
7 Big Wheels Hank Snow
2 Blue Boy Jim Reeves
4 Breathless Jerry Lee Lewis
15 Claudette The Everly Brothers
7 Color of the Blues George Jones
6 Come in Stranger Johnny Cash
3 Crying Over You Webb Pierce
3 Curtain in the Window Ray Price
7 Devoted to You The Everly Brothers
2 Don't Elvis Presley
10 Every Time I'm Kissing You Faron Young
10 Falling Back to You Webb Pierce
5 Give Myself a Party Don Gibson
8 Half a Mind Ernest Tubb
2 Hard Headed Woman Elvis Presley
14 Have Blues-Will Travel Eddie Noack
16 He's Lost His Love for Me Kitty Wells
9 Hey, Mr. Bluebird Ernest Tubb and The Wilburn Brothers
9 High School Confidential Jerry Lee Lewis
13 House of Glass Ernest Tubb
11 How Do You Hold a Memory Hank Thompson
4 I Beg of You Elvis Presley
3 I Can't Stop Loving You Kitty Wells
7 I Can't Stop Loving You Don Gibson
5 I Found My Girl in the USA Jimmie Skinner
8 I Love You More Jim Reeves
18 I Want to Go Where No One Knows Me Jean Shepard
19 I'll Make It All Up to You Jerry Lee Lewis
3 Invitation to the Blues Ray Price
9 Is It Wrong (For Loving You) Warner Mack
3 It's a Little More Like Heaven Hank Locklin
5 Jacqueline Bobby Helms
7 Jealousy Kitty Wells
10 Just a Little Lonesome Bobby Helms
18 Lonely Island Pearl Johnnie & Jack
8 Look Who's Blue Don Gibson
15 Lost to a Geisha Girl Skeeter Davis
12 Love Bug Crawl Jimmy Edwards
10 My Bucket's Got a Hole in It Ricky Nelson
11 Nothin' Needs Nothin' (Like I Need You) Marvin Rainwater
5 Oh-Oh, I'm Falling in Love Again Jimmie Rodgers
8 Once More Roy Acuff
13 Once More Osborne Brothers and Red Allen
12 One Week Later Webb Pierce and Kitty Wells
10 Overnight Jim Reeves
18 Patricia Perez Prado
2 Pick Me Up On Your Way Down Charlie Walker
17 Pink Pedal Pushers Carl Perkins
9 Please Pass the Biscuits Gene Sullivan
3 Poor Little Fool Ricky Nelson
6 Raunchy Bill Justis
11 Raunchy Ernie Freeman
17 Rebel-'Rouser Duane Eddy
14 Rock Hearts Jimmy Martin
5 Secretly Jimmie Rodgers
5 Send Me the Pillow That You Dream On Hank Locklin
4 She Was Only Seventeen (He Was One Year More) Marty Robbins
10 Should We Tell Him The Everly Brothers
14 Splish Splash Bobby Darin
2 Squaws Along the Yukon Hank Thompson
2 Stairway of Love Marty Robbins
8 Stood Up Ricky Nelson
7 Stop the World (And Let Me Off) Johnnie & Jack
16 Talk to Me Lonesome Heart James O'Gwynn
9 That's the Way I Feel Faron Young
4 This Little Girl of Mine The Everly Brothers
15 Touch and Go Heart Kitty Wells
6 Treasure of Love George Jones
7 Tupelo County Jail Webb Pierce
8 Uh-Huh-mm Sonny James
12 Waitin' in School Ricky Nelson
2 The Ways of a Woman in Love Johnny Cash
3 Wear My Ring Around Your Neck Elvis Presley
7 What Do I Care Johnny Cash
8 What Makes a Man Wander Jimmie Skinner
13 When Kalin Twins
15 Whispering Rain Hank Snow
15 Whole Lotta Woman Marvin Rainwater
16 A Woman Captured Me Hank Snow
13 Would You Care The Browns
2 You Win Again Jerry Lee Lewis
10 You'll Come Back Webb Pierce
5 You're the Nearest Thing to Heaven Johnny Cash
6 Your Name Is Beautiful Carl Smith

Top new album releases[edit]

Births[edit]

Deaths[edit]

  • September 12 - Rod Brasfield, 48, comedian who was immensely popular with Grand Ole Opry audiences (heart failure).

Further reading[edit]

  • Kingsbury, Paul, "The Grand Ole Opry: History of Country Music. 70 Years of the Songs, the Stars and the Stories," Villard Books, Random House; Opryland USA, 1995
  • Kingsbury, Paul, "Vinyl Hayride: Country Music Album Covers 1947-1989," Country Music Foundation, 2003 (ISBN 0-8118-3572-3)
  • Millard, Bob, "Country Music: 70 Years of America's Favorite Music," HarperCollins, New York, 1993 (ISBN 0-06-273244-7)
  • Whitburn, Joel, "Top Country Songs 1944-2005 - 6th Edition." 2005.

Other links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Rolling Stone Rock Almanac: The Chronicles of Rock & Roll," Collier Books, MacMillan Publishing Co., New York and London, 1983, p. 41. ISBN 0-02-081320-1