1986 in country music

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This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in the year 1986.

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Events[edit]

  • January 18 — "American Country Countdown" with Bob Kingsley expands from three to four hours. Several new features — including a chronological playback of songs reaching No. 1 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart and a calendar feature (highlighting a birthday, or anniversary of a notable song or event in country music) — are added.
  • June 25 — Jenifer Strait, the 13 year-old daughter of George Strait (who by now is one of country music's top performers) is killed in a car accident in San Marcos, Texas. Her father still refuses to talk about his daughter's death to this day.

No dates[edit]

  • For the first time in its 42-year history, there is a new No. 1 song for each week of the year, according to Billboard magazine's Hot Country Singles Chart.
  • 1986 was a renaissance year in country music, with a host of "New Traditionalist"-minded artists reinvigorating a genre that critics were saying had grown increasingly stagnant and pop-oriented. Among the most successful new artists: Holly Dunn, Judy Rodman, Ricky Van Shelton, Randy Travis and Dwight Yoakam. Keith Whitley, another artist who had been around for a few years, has his first major hit early in the year. They - along with popular newcomers from earlier in the decade such as Alabama, George Strait and Reba McEntire, and longtime artists like George Jones, Merle Haggard and Conway Twitty - proved not only that country music was the music of the people, but also that the genre had real resiliency.
  • After 17 years of playing co-host to Roy Clark, Buck Owens announces his departure from the still-popular "Hee Haw." Clark would soldier on alone for the next six years, with rotating guest stars each week.

Top hits of the year[edit]

Singles released by American artists[edit]

US CAN Single Artist
1 1 100% Chance of Rain Gary Morris
6 5 1982 Randy Travis
1 1 Ain't Misbehavin' Hank Williams, Jr.
6 1 All Tied Up Ronnie McDowell
1 1 Always Have, Always Will Janie Fricke
19 53 Arlene Marty Stuart
5 16 At the Sound of the Tone John Schneider
7 2 (Back to The) Heartbreak Kid Restless Heart
14 7 Back When Love Was Enough Mark Gray
12 15 Bad Love Pake McEntire
1 1 Bop Dan Seals
17 7 Born Yesterday The Everly Brothers
1 1 Both to Each Other (Friends and Lovers) Eddie Rabbitt with Juice Newton
10 Burned Like a Rocket Billy Joe Royal
1 1 Cajun Moon Ricky Skaggs
9 5 Cheap Love Juice Newton
3 1 Come On In (You Did the Best You Could Do) The Oak Ridge Boys
5 4 Count on Me The Statler Brothers
2 4 Country State of Mind Hank Williams, Jr.
1 1 Cry Crystal Gayle
7 Daddy's Hands Holly Dunn
1 1 Desperado Love Conway Twitty
13 7 The Devil's on the Loose Waylon Jennings
10 10 Didn't We Lee Greenwood
1 1 Diggin' Up Bones Randy Travis
1 1 Don't Underestimate My Love for You Lee Greenwood
6 9 Doo-Wah Days Mickey Gilley
12 35 Down in Tennessee John Anderson
9 17 Dreamland Express John Denver
8 21 Drinkin' My Baby Goodbye Charlie Daniels
5 15 Easy to Please Janie Fricke
20 47 Every Night Pake McEntire
1 1 Everything That Glitters (Is Not Gold) Dan Seals
4 2 Fast Lanes and Country Roads Barbara Mandrell
2 8 Feelin' the Feelin' The Bellamy Brothers
9 12 A Friend in California Merle Haggard
17 19 A Girl Like Emmylou Southern Pacific
1 1 Got My Heart Set on You John Conlee
12 Gotta Learn to Love Without You Michael Johnson
1 1 Grandpa (Tell Me 'Bout the Good Ol' Days) The Judds
7 7 Guitar Town Steve Earle
4 2 Guitars, Cadillacs Dwight Yoakam
1 1 Happy, Happy Birthday Baby Ronnie Milsap
10 19 Harmony John Conlee
14 16 Heart Don't Fall Now Sawyer Brown
1 2 Heartbeat in the Darkness Don Williams
1 1 Hearts Aren't Made to Break (They're Made to Love) Lee Greenwood
1 1 Hell and High Water T. Graham Brown
5 6 Hold On Rosanne Cash
3 1 Home Again in My Heart Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
10 7 Honky Tonk Crowd John Anderson
3 1 Honky Tonk Man Dwight Yoakam
1 1 Hurt Juice Newton
1 1 I Could Get Used to You Exile
5 4 I Had a Beautiful Time Merle Haggard
9 7 I Love You by Heart Sylvia with Michael Johnson
14 I Miss You Already Billy Joe Royal
7 I Tell It Like It Used to Be T. Graham Brown
3 2 I Wish That I Could Hurt That Way Again T. Graham Brown
10 7 I've Got a New Heartache Ricky Skaggs
1 1 In Love Ronnie Milsap
9 28 In Over My Heart T. G. Sheppard
1 5 It Ain't Cool to Be Crazy About You George Strait
1 1 It'll Be Me Exile
7 7 It's Just a Matter of Time Glen Campbell
15 16 Juliet The Oak Ridge Boys
1 1 Just Another Love Tanya Tucker
1 2 Just in Case The Forester Sisters
1 2 Life's Highway Steve Wariner
1 2 Little Rock Reba McEntire
1 1 Living in the Promiseland Willie Nelson
2 3 Lonely Alone The Forester Sisters
3 Love at the Five and Dime Kathy Mattea
14 Love Will Get You Through Times of No Money Girls Next Door
4 1 Love's Gonna Get You Someday Ricky Skaggs
1 1 Makin' Up for Lost Time (The Dallas Lovers Song) Gary Morris with Crystal Gayle
1 1 Mama's Never Seen Those Eyes The Forester Sisters
5 2 Memories to Burn Gene Watson
14 38 Miami, My Amy Keith Whitley
1 1 Mind Your Own Business Hank Williams, Jr. featuring Reba McEntire,
Tom Petty, Reverend Ike and Willie Nelson
1 1 Morning Desire Kenny Rogers
1 2 Never Be You Rosanne Cash
4 11 Nights Ed Bruce
6 5 No One Mends a Broken Heart Like You Barbara Mandrell
1 1 Nobody in His Right Mind Would've Left Her George Strait
12 9 Nothing but Your Love Matters Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers
10 6 Oh Darlin' The O'Kanes
9 27 Oklahoma Borderline Vince Gill
5 3 Old Flame Juice Newton
5 6 Old School John Conlee
1 1 On the Other Hand Randy Travis
1 1 Once in a Blue Moon Earl Thomas Conley
3 2 The One I Loved Back Then (The Corvette Song) George Jones
3 1 One Love at a Time Tanya Tucker
11 4 Out Goin' Cattin' Sawyer Brown with Cat Joe Bonsall
6 3 Partners, Brothers and Friends Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
18 24 Perfect Stranger Southern Pacific
7 3 Please Be Love Mark Gray
4 5 Read My Lips Marie Osmond
9 19 Reno Bound Southern Pacific
4 5 Repetitive Regret Eddie Rabbitt
1 1 Rockin' with the Rhythm of the Rain The Judds
15 14 Rollin' Nowhere Michael Martin Murphey
3 4 Savin' My Love for You Pake McEntire
5 4 Second to No One Rosanne Cash
15 7 Shakin' Sawyer Brown
1 1 She and I Alabama
2 3 She Used to Be Somebody's Baby Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers
22 18 Shoe String Mel McDaniel
7 15 Since I Found You Sweethearts of the Rodeo
8 Slow Boat to China Girls Next Door
9 20 Somebody Wants Me Out of the Way George Jones
3 2 Sometimes a Lady Eddy Raven
5 3 Stand a Little Rain Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
12 5 Stand on It Mel McDaniel
4 11 Starting Over Again Steve Wariner
1 1 Strong Heart T. G. Sheppard
14 21 Super Love Exile
8 34 Sweeter and Sweeter The Statler Brothers
9 16 Ten Feet Away Keith Whitley
1 2 That Rock Won't Roll Restless Heart
9 9 That's How You Know When Love's Right Nicolette Larson with Steve Wariner
1 1 There's No Stopping Your Heart Marie Osmond
1 1 Think About Love Dolly Parton
17 20 Tie Our Love (In a Double Knot) Dolly Parton
10 11 Til I Loved You Restless Heart
1 1 Tomb of the Unknown Love Kenny Rogers
2 3 Too Many Times Earl Thomas Conley with Anita Pointer
1 1 Too Much Is Not Enough The Bellamy Brothers with The Forester Sisters
1 1 Touch Me When We're Dancing Alabama
1 Until I Met You Judy Rodman
10 Walk the Way the Wind Blows Kathy Mattea
3 2 We've Got a Good Fire Goin' Don Williams
8 7 What You'll Do When I'm Gone Waylon Jennings
1 1 What's a Memory Like You (Doing in a Love Like This) John Schneider
17 27 When It's Down to Me and You Charly McClain with Wayne Massey
20 33 When You Get to the Heart Barbara Mandrell with The Oak Ridge Boys
1 3 Whoever's in New England Reba McEntire
5 5 Will the Wolf Survive Waylon Jennings
10 13 Wine Colored Roses George Jones
16 19 Working Class Man Lacy J. Dalton
7 5 Working Without a Net Waylon Jennings
10 8 You Are My Music, You Are My Song Charly McClain with Wayne Massey
1 1 You Can Dream of Me Steve Wariner
9 You Can't Stop Love Schuyler, Knobloch & Overstreet
24 20 You Made a Rock of a Rolling Stone The Oak Ridge Boys
3 3 You Should Have Been Gone by Now Eddy Raven
4 4 You're Something Special to Me George Strait
1 1 You're Still New to Me Paul Davis with Marie Osmond
1 1 You're the Last Thing I Needed Tonight John Schneider
5 2 Your Memory Ain't What It Used to Be Mickey Gilley

Singles released by Canadian artists[edit]

US CAN Single Artist
91 9 Being a Fool Again Audie Henry
15 Call Me Up Rae Palmer
16 Fiddlin' Man Whiskey Jack
13 Forget About Me Anne Lord
4 He's My Gentle Man Audie Henry
10 Heads You Win (Tails I Lose) Anita Perras
8 Hot on the Heels of Love The Haggertys
6 I'll Never Get Over You Anne Lord
13 I'm Best at Lovin' You Murray McLauchlan
9 I'm Taking Care of Myself Carroll Baker
5 In My Arms Tonight Bootleg
9 It's Times Like This Carol Martyn
18 Love Crazy Gilles Godard
6 Love Sweet Love Terry Carisse
16 Lovin' the Night Away Terry Sumsion
1 1 Now and Forever (You and Me) Anne Murray
8 Pretty Diamond Ring Mercey Brothers
9 Reach Out and Touch Her Harvey Henry
14 Rise Against the Wind Dick Damron with Ginny Mitchell
19 Something Good Anita Perras with Tim Taylor
14 Stealer of Hearts Ronnie Prophet
17 Summer Nights The Ellis Family Band
6 Take a Little Chance on Love Mercey Brothers
15 Two Hearts in a Lonely Mind Jules
80 8 What If It's Right Family Brown
18 You Can't Hide from Love Stoker Bros

Top new album releases[edit]

US Album Artist Record Label
1 #7 George Strait MCA
16 American Faces John Conlee Columbia
1 Black & White Janie Fricke Columbia
22 Born Yesterday The Everly Brothers Mercury/PolyGram
15 Class of '55 Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis,
Roy Orbison & Johnny Cash
America/Smash
17 Countrified John Anderson Warner Bros.
7 Four for the Show The Statler Brothers Mercury/PolyGram
2 A Friend in California Merle Haggard Epic
16 From the Pages of My Mind Ray Charles Columbia
20 Girls Like Me Tanya Tucker Capitol
1 Greatest Hits Alabama RCA
2 Greatest Hits Exile Epic
1 Guitar Town Steve Earle MCA
1 Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc. Dwight Yoakam Reprise
9 Harmony John Conlee Columbia
13 Heroes Johnny Cash & Waylon Jennings Columbia
19 I Only Wanted You Marie Osmond Capitol/Curb
15 I Tell It Like It Used to Be T. Graham Brown Capitol
23 Judy Judy Rodman MTM
25 Just Can't Sit Down Music Mel McDaniel Capitol
21 Looking Ahead Billy Joe Royal Atlantic America
9 Love Will Find Its Way to You Lee Greenwood MCA
3 Love's Gonna Get Ya! Ricky Skaggs Epic
14 Lyle Lovett Lyle Lovett Curb/MCA
17 Merry Christmas Strait to You George Strait MCA
1 Montana Cafe Hank Williams, Jr. Curb/Warner Bros.
9 The O'Kanes The O'Kanes Columbia
12 On the Front Line Dan Seals Capitol
15 Out Among the Stars Merle Haggard Epic
8 Out Goin' Cattin' Sawyer Brown Capitol/Curb
13 Partners Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers Columbia
13 Partners Willie Nelson Columbia
9 Plain Brown Wrapper Gary Morris Warner Bros.
1 The Promiseland Willie Nelson Columbia
6 Rabbitt Trax Eddie Rabbitt RCA
8 Seasons The Oak Ridge Boys MCA
2 Something to Talk About Anne Murray Capitol
1 Storms of Life Randy Travis Warner Bros.
12 Straight to the Heart Crystal Gayle Warner Bros.
11 Surely You Joust Ray Stevens MCA
8 Sweethearts of the Rodeo Sweethearts of the Rodeo Columbia
17 Take the Long Way Home John Schneider MCA
16 They Don't Make Them
Like They Used To
Kenny Rogers RCA
9 Thirteen Emmylou Harris Warner Bros.
3 Too Many Times Earl Thomas Conley RCA
1 The Touch Alabama RCA
10 Twenty Years of Dirt Nitty Gritty Dirt Band Warner Bros.
13 Walk the Way the Wind Blows Kathy Mattea Mercury
1 What Am I Gonna Do About You Reba McEntire MCA
1 Wheels Restless Heart RCA
1 Whoever's in New England Reba McEntire MCA
1 Will the Wolf Survive Waylon Jennings MCA
5 Wine Colored Roses George Jones Epic

Other top albums[edit]

US Album Artist Record Label
34 All Tied Up in Love Ronnie McDowell MCA
53 American Vagabond William Lee Golden MCA
59 The Boys Are Back in Town The Maines Brothers Band Mercury/PolyGram
65 Chance Chance Mercury/PolyGram
50 Christmas Again The Oak Ridge Boys MCA
65 Christmas with Ronnie Milsap Ronnie Milsap RCA
49 Everybody Knows I'm Yours Jim Glaser MCA/Noble Vision
37 Fallin' for You for Years Conway Twitty Warner Bros.
47 Fire at First Sight The Kendalls MCA
29 Floridays Jimmy Buffett MCA
30 The Girls Next Door Girls Next Door MTM
48 Greatest Hits Vern Gosdin Compleat
27 Greatest Hits, Vol. II The Bellamy Brothers Curb/MCA
32 Highway Diner Lacy J. Dalton Columbia
29 Holly Dunn Holly Dunn MTM
26 It Still Rains in Memphis T. G. Sheppard Columbia
35 Killbilly Hill Southern Pacific Warner Bros.
26 L.A. to Miami Keith Whitley RCA
34 Marty Stuart Marty Stuart Columbia
62 Memphis Sessions Rick Nelson Epic
53 Moments Barbara Mandrell MCA
66 New Grass Revival New Grass Revival Capitol
29 New Moves Don Williams Capitol
40 One and Only Mickey Gilley Epic
35 Patty Loveless Patty Loveless MCA
27 Perfume, Ribbons and Pearls The Forester Sisters Warner Bros.
56 Portrait of a Singer Ray Price Step One
31 Radio Gospel Favorites The Statler Brothers Mercury/PolyGram
40 Reba Nell McEntire Reba McEntire Mercury/PolyGram
31 Repossessed Kris Kristofferson Mercury/PolyGram
57 Robin Lee Robin Lee Evergreen
40 Rose of My Heart Nicolette Larson MCA
39 Schuyler, Knobloch & Overstreet S-K-O MTM
70 The Shoppe The Shoppe MTM
31 Son of the South David Allan Coe Columbia
49 Starting New Memories Gene Watson Epic
38 Street Language Rodney Crowell Columbia
59 Thank God for the Radio…
And All the Hits
The Kendalls Mercury/PolyGram
35 That Feeling Inside Mark Gray Columbia
54 Think About Love Dolly Parton RCA
46 Tonight We Ride Michael Martin Murphey Warner Bros.
52 Too Old to Grow Up Pake McEntire RCA
28 When Love Is Right Charly McClain & Wayne Massey Epic
26 Wings Michael Johnson RCA
50 Winners Donna Fargo Mercury/PolyGram

On television[edit]

Regular series[edit]

  • Hee Haw (1969–1993, syndicated)

Specials[edit]

Births[edit]

Deaths[edit]

  • February 10 — Arthur E. Satherley, 96, music executive.
  • May 30 — "Papa Joe" Brown, 60, founding member of Canadian country group Family Brown.
  • June 20 — Whitey Ford, 85, beloved Grand Ole Opry comedian and storyteller.
  • June 25 — Jenifer Strait, 13, daughter of George Strait (car accident).
  • June 27 — Joe Maphis, 65, prolific guitarist and fiddler, prominently featured on the theme to "Bonanza" (cancer).
  • December 5 — Carmol Taylor, 53, songwriter.

Hall of Fame inductees[edit]

Country Music Hall of Fame inductees[edit]

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame inductees[edit]

Major awards[edit]

Grammy Awards[edit]

Juno Awards[edit]

Academy of Country Music[edit]

Canadian Country Music Association[edit]

Country Music Association[edit]

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]

External links[edit]