Wartrace, TN, January 26, 2011 – In the early morning of January 26, country music legend Charlie Louvin passed away at his home in Wartrace, Tennessee, surrounded by family. Louvin is survived by his wife Betty, and three sons, Charlie Jr. (Sonny), Glenn and Kenneth. A private funeral for Louvin will be held in Nashville, on Sunday, January 30.
Louvin had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in the summer of 2010 and had subsequently undergone surgery to help combat the disease. The surgery was limited in its success, but Charlie’s health was stable enough that he was able to enjoy his love of performing live up until the end of his life.
Louvin’s own words to Nashville newspaper The Tennessean in 2010 characterize the constant professionalism and work ethic he was renowned for within the industry, “Show business is all I really know how to do,” said Louvin. “and I would like for it to be the last thing I do.”
“I had the honor and pleasure to be Charlie Louvin’s manager,” Says Brett Steele. “Some artist’s greatest contribution can be the influence they have over other artists and Charlie’s reach was immeasurable from The Beatles to Gram Parsons. While The Louvin Brothers will be remembered as one of the greatest country duos in the history of country music Charlie’s solo career was just as successful and relevant. But his greatest legacy was Charlie Louvin the man, husband, father and friend. That outshines any of his musical contributions to our society. He will be greatly missed but never forgotten.”
Louvin, a Country Music Hall of Famer, was revered as a true icon of country music for decades. He began his career as one half of The Louvin Brothers, and has released over 20 albums spanning over forty years. His music had strong influence over an array of acclaimed artists including Emmylou Harris, Gram Parsons, and The Raconteurs. Louvin was the oldest living member of the Grand Ole Opry having been made a member in 1955.
In 2004, Livin’, Lovin’ Losin’: Songs of the Louvin Brothers musical tribute to the Louvin Brothers featuring James Taylor, Merle Haggard, Dolly Parton, and Johnny Cash won two GRAMMY® Awards for Best Country Album and, Best Country Collaboration.
In recent years, Louvin continued his solo work and enjoyed a revitalization of his career. In November of 2010 he released his final studio album The Battle Rages On, an emotional collection of war songs dating back to the American Civil War, which includes the talents of special guests Del McCoury and Jamie Dailey.
Fans have shown an outpouring of support and well wishes since word of Louvin’s passing was made public earlier today. The Louvin family wishes to extend its sincerest gratitude for this support in this very difficult time.