1963 in country music
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This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in 1963.
- March — The month marks a dark time for country music, as it lost no less than five people in a seemingly endless string of tragedies.
- * On March 5, three of the genre's top stars – Patsy Cline, Hawkshaw Hawkins and Cowboy Copas – are killed in a small plane crash near Camden, Tennessee, while on their way to Nashville from Kansas City, Kansas. The pilot, Cline's manager and Copas' son-in-law, Randy Hughes, is also killed.
- * En route to Cline's funeral, Jack Anglin – one half of the duo Johnnie & Jack – is killed in a car accident.
- * On March 29, Texas Ruby, of the duo Curly Fox and Texas Ruby, is killed in a trailer fire while Fox was performing on the Grand Ole Opry.
- July — The first issue of the Music City News is published. Its publisher is country music star Faron Young.
- August – Bradley Kincaid, a pioneer of the genre who had been popular on records and radio from the late 1920s until his retirement in 1950, made new recordings of 168 of his favourite songs – more than half of his known repertoire – at a five-day session for Bluebonnet Records in Fort Worth, Texas. 86 of these songs would be issued on seven LP's between 1963 and 1987, the remainder were issued on six Cassette Tapes in 1988.
- September 19 — The Jimmy Dean Show begins a three-year primetime run on ABC. The show — Dean's second go-around on television, following his 1950s series on CBS — is widely hailed by critics for its class treatment of top country stars of the day, many of whom were getting their first true national exposure.
- The Wilburn Brothers' TV show debuts in syndication, and features Loretta Lynn as regular vocalist. The show will air first-run episodes, primarily in rural and southern U.S. markets, through 1974 and, riding the heels of Porter Wagoner's weekly TV show, will spark a wave of successful (and a few not-so-successful) syndicated TV shows featuring top-name country stars of the day through the late 1970s and early 1980s.
Top hits of the year
(as certified by Billboard)
|Date||Single name||Artist||Wks. No.1||Notes|
|January 5||Ruby Ann||Marty Robbins||1|
|January 19||The Ballad of Jed Clampett||Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs||3|||
|April 13||Still||Bill Anderson||7||, 
|May 4||Lonesome 7-7203||Hawkshaw Hawkins||4||, [B]
|June 15||Act Naturally||Buck Owens||4||, [A]
|July 27||Ring of Fire||Johnny Cash||7||
|September 14||Abilene||George Hamilton IV||4||[A]|
|October 12||Talk Back Trembling Lips||Ernest Ashworth||1||[B]|
|October 19||Love's Gonna Live Here||Buck Owens||16|
Other major hits
|12||Bayou Talk||Jimmy C. Newman|
|20||Better Times a Comin'||Ray Godfrey|
|12||Building a Bridge||Claude King|
|13||Busted||Johnny Cash with Carter Family|
|9||Call Me Mr. Brown||Skeets McDonald|
|11||Can't Hang Up the Phone||Stonewall Jackson|
|14||Cigarettes and Coffee Blues||Marty Robbins|
|13||Cold and Lonely (Is the Forecast for Tonight)||Kitty Wells|
|3||Cowboy Boots||Dave Dudley|
|18||Crazy Arms||Marion Worth|
|6||Detroit City||Bobby Bare|
|5||Does He Mean That Much to You||Eddy Arnold|
|13||Don't Call Me From a Honky Tonk||Johnny & Jonie Mosby|
|9||Down by the River||Faron Young|
|18||Down to the River||Rose Maddox|
|2||Eight by Ten||Bill Anderson|
|2||End of the World||Skeeter Davis|
|7||Faded Love||Patsy Cline|
|14||Fool Me Once||Connie Hall|
|2||From a Jack to a King||Ned Miller|
|17||Going Through the Motions (Of Living)||Sonny James|
|12||Goodbye Kisses||Cowboy Copas|
|3||Happy Birthday||Loretta Lynn|
|11||Happy to Be Unhappy||Gary Buck|
|12||Head Over Heels in Love with You||Don Gibson|
|5||Hello Trouble||Orville Couch|
|13||Hey Lucille!||Claude King|
|14||I Can't Stay Mad at You||Skeeter Davis|
|7||I Take the Chance||Ernest Ashworth|
|18||I Wanna Go Home||Billy Grammer|
|9||I'm Saving My Love||Skeeter Davis|
|7||I've Enjoyed as Much of This as I Can Stand||Porter Wagoner|
|11||I've Got the World by the Tail||Claude King|
|17||In the Back Room Tonight||Carl Smith|
|3||Is This Me||Jim Reeves|
|18||Knock Again, True Love||Claude Gray|
|8||Leavin' on Your Mind||Patsy Cline|
|17||Let's Invite Them Over||George Jones and Melba Montgomery|
|11||Little Ole You||Jim Reeves|
|18||Lonely Teardops||Rose Maddox|
|14||Loving Arms||Carl Butler and Pearl|
|2||Make the World Go Away||Ray Price|
|9||The Man Who Robbed the Bank at Santa Fe||Hank Snow|
|12||Mary Ann Regrets||Burl Ives|
|2||The Matador||Johnny Cash|
|13||A Million Years or So||Eddy Arnold|
|9||The Minute You're Gone||Sonny James|
|2||Mountain of Love||David Houston|
|8||Mr. Heartache, Move On||Coleman O'Neal|
|20||My Baby's Not Here (In Town Tonight)||Porter Wagoner|
|16||My Father's Voice||Judy Lynn|
|2||Ninety Miles an Hour (Down a Dead End Street)||Hank Snow|
|13||Not So Long Ago||Marty Robbins|
|7||Not What I Had in Mind||George Jones|
|8||Old Showboat||Stonewall Jackson|
|13||The Only Girl I Can't Forget||Del Reeves|
|13||The Other Woman||Loretta Lynn|
|8||Pearl Pearl Pearl||Flatt & Scruggs|
|14||Please Talk to My Heart||Johnny "Country" Mathis|
|15||Robert E. Lee||Ott Stephens|
|4||Roll Muddy River||The Wilburn Brothers|
|7||Sands of Gold||Webb Pierce|
|3||Second Hand Rose||Roy Drusky|
|14||Shake Me I Rattle (Squeeze Me I Cry)||Marion Worth|
|12||Sheepskin Valley||Claude King|
|17||Shoes of a Fool||Bill Goodwin|
|3||Sing a Little Song of Heartache||Rose Maddox|
|2||Six Days on the Road||Dave Dudley|
|18||Somebody Told Somebody||Rose Maddox|
|17||A Stranger Was Here||Darrell McCall|
|5||Sweet Dreams||Patsy Cline|
|19||Sweethearts in Heaven||Buck Owens and Rose Maddox|
|5||T for Texas||Grandpa Jones|
|6||Take a Letter, Miss Gray||Justin Tubb|
|10||Tell Her So||The Wilburn Brothers|
|3||Thanks a Lot||Ernest Tubb|
|9||Those Wonderful Years||Webb Pierce|
|10||The Tip of My Fingers||Roy Clark|
|18||Unkind Words||Kathy Dee|
|7||Walk Me to the Door||Ray Price|
|17||The Way It Feels to Die||Vernon Stewart|
|3||We Must Have Been Out of Our Minds||George Jones and Melba Montgomery|
|15||We're the Talk of the Town||Buck Owens and Rose Maddox|
|13||We've Got Something in Common||Faron Young|
|20||What's in Our Heart||George Jones and Melba Montgomery|
|15||Wild Wild Wind||Stonewall Jackson|
|4||The Yellow Bandana||Faron Young|
|11||Yesterday's Memories||Eddy Arnold|
|5||You Comb Her Hair||George Jones|
|11||You Took Her Off My Hands (Now Please Take Her Off My Mind)||Ray Price|
|10||You're for Me||Buck Owens|
|12||Your Best Friend and Me||Mac Wiseman|
Top new album releases
|Blood, Sweat and Tears||Johnny Cash||Columbia|
|The Patsy Cline Story||Patsy Cline||Decca|
|Ring of Fire: The Best of Johnny Cash||Johnny Cash||Columbia|
Other top albums
|Buck Owens Sings Tommy Collins||Buck Owens||Capitol|
|Cattle Call||Eddy Arnold||RCA|
|Country Music Hootenanny||Various Artists||Capitol|
|Detroit City and Other Hits by Bobby Bare||Bobby Bare||RCA|
|End of the World||Skeeter Davis||RCA|
|Great Gospel Songs||Tennessee Ernie Ford||Capitol|
|The Guitar Genius||Chet Atkins||RCA|
|Our Man in Nashville||Chet Atkins||RCA|
|On the Bandstand||Buck Owens||Capitol|
|Songs I Love to Sing||Eddy Arnold||Capitol|
|Songs That Made Him Famous||Johnny Bond||Starday|
|Teen Scene||Chet Atkins||RCA|
|Tips of My Fingers||Roy Clark||Capitol|
|Yodeling Hits||Grandpa Jones||Monument|
- January 24 — Keech Rainwater, member of Lonestar.
- February 9 — Travis Tritt, country-rock influenced star starting in the early 1990s.
- February 17 – Larry the Cable Guy (born Daniel Lawrence Whitney), comedian and actor, member of Blue Collar Comedy with Jeff Foxworthy, Bill Engvall and Ron White
- July 31 — Chad Brock, rose to fame in the late 1990s.
- August 22 — Mila Mason, enjoyed fame in the late 1990s.
- September 6 — Mark Chesnutt, neotraditional country singer of the 1990s.
- September 30 — Eddie Montgomery, one half of Montgomery Gentry, older brother of John Michael Montgomery.
- November 1 — Big Kenny (born William Kenneth Alphin), one half of Big & Rich and key member of the MuzikMafia.
- December 3 — Ty England, contemporary-styled singer of the mid-1990s, and guitarist member of the Garth Brooks' band.
- December 16 — Jeff Carson, contemporary-styled singer of the mid-1990s.
- March 5 — Patsy Cline, 30, premier female country vocalist who became even more legendary after her death (plane crash).
- March 5 — Cowboy Copas, 49, country singer from the 1940s through 1960s, best known for his 1960 hit, "Alabam" (plane crash).
- March 5 — Hawkshaw Hawkins, 41, country singer since the 1940s, best known for his posthumous No. 1 hit, "Lonesome 7-7203" (plane crash).
- March 8 — Jack Anglin, 47, country entertainer since the 1930s, late of the duo Johnnie and Jack (with Johnnie Wright) (car accident).
- March 29 — Texas Ruby, 52, half of the comedy-old-time country duo Curly Fox and Texas Ruby (mobile home fire).
- August 27 – Jim Denny, 52, music executive.
Country Music Hall of Fame Inductees
There were no inductees in 1963.
- 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.