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Gene Watson's peers within the country music industry believe in the sheer talent of this unassuming man from east Texas, so much so that Gene is regarded by many of them as 'the singer's singer' - and rightly so!
All of Gene Watson's Peers who were contacted during 2006 were most gracious with their time and words. It is here, within this special part of the Gene Watson Fan Site, that you have an opportunity to read a quote from Mark Casstevens, which he submitted to this site on Thursday 19 October 2006.
Sean Brady would like to take this opportunity to say 'thank you' to Mark Casstevens who has made a special contribution to a unique part of this online 'celebration of a Lone Star Hero'.
This quote was submitted on Thursday 19 October 2006.
'I've had the privilege to play acoustic guitar behind Gene on a couple of recording projects and both were a treat.
It remains a career highlight to have worked with him on the arrangement when we recorded 'At Last' - what a vocal!
Gene's work belongs in a time capsule...the hardest thing would be to pick which performances'.
Thank you, Mark Casstevens, for your support of Gene Watson.
About Mark Casstevens...
Mark Casstevens is a Texan who moved to Nashville, when he was twenty-two years old. Among the career highlights of a guitar player in the Nashville studios was getting to meet musical heroes.
Mark Casstevens soon rubbed shoulders with the elite of Nashville musicians, including guitar/banjo player Bobby Thompson, Chet Atkins (Friday 20 June 1924 - Saturday 30 June 2001), Jerry Reed (Saturday 20 March 1937 - Sunday 31 August 2008) and drummer Larrie Londin (Friday 15 October 1943 - Monday 24 August 1992).
As a multi-instrumentalist specialising in acoustic guitar, Mark Casstevens has accompanied over 250 recording artists in Nashville studio sessions. He has played on ninety-eight No.1 singles on the Billboard country music singles chart and has added his talents to well over four hundred albums and the cumulative sales from those sessions is in the region of two hundred million units. The songs and albums have been awarded over twenty Grammy Awards.
Music Row magazine named Mark Casstevens winner in the Guitar category of their annual Studio Poll in 1993. In 2003, Mark Casstevens was voted 'Specialty Instrumentalist Of The Year' by the Academy of Country Music (ACM) for his multi-instrumental contributions to hit records.
The array of artists whose recordings Mark Casstevens has contributed to is an extraordinary list and includes the following array of country music stars:
Chet Atkins (Friday 20 June 1924 - Saturday 30 June 2001)
Baillie and the Boys
Brooks and Dunn (Kix Brooks and Ronnie Dunn)
T. Graham Brown
Johnny Cash (Friday 26 February 1932 - Friday 12 September 2003)
Beth Neilsen Chapman
Earl Thomas Conley
The Cox Family
Floyd Cramer (Friday 27 October 1933 - Wednesday 31 December 1997)
John Denver (Friday 31 December 1943 - Sunday 12 October 1997)
Freddy Fender (Friday 4 June 1937 - Saturday 14 October 2006)
Vern Gosdin (Sunday 5 August 1934 - Tuesday 28 April 2009)
Rebecca Lynn Howard
Chris Ledoux (Saturday 2 October 1948 - Wednesday 9 March 2005)
John Michael Montgomery
Michael Martin Murphey
Oak Ridge Boys
Buck Owens (Monday 12 August 1929 - Saturday 25 March 2006)
Johnny Paycheck (Tuesday 31 May 1938 - Wednesday 19 February 2003)
Webb Pierce (Monday 8 August 1921 - Sunday 24 February 1991)
Eddie Rabbitt (Thursday 27 November 1941 - Thursday 7 May 1998)
Jerry Reed (Saturday 20 March 1937 - Sunday 31 August 2008)
Jeannie C. Riley
Roy Rogers (Sunday 5 November 1911 - Monday 6 July 1998)
Billy Joe Royal
Dan Seals (Sunday 8 February 1948 - Wednesday 25 March 2009)
Ricky Van Shelton
Shel Silverstein (Thursday 25 September 1930 - Saturday 8/Sunday 9 May 1999)
Conway Twitty (Friday 1 September 1933 - Saturday 5 June 1993)
Dottie West (Tuesday 11 October 1932 - Wednesday 4 September 1991)
Keith Whitley (Thursday 1 July 1954 - Tuesday 9 May 1989)
Hank Williams Junior
Lee Ann Womack
Tammy Wynette (Tuesday 5 May 1942 - Monday 6 April 1998)
Mark Casstevens played guitar, on all tracks, on Tammy Wynette's highly acclaimed 'Higher Ground' (Epic Records, 1987), which was produced by Steve Buckingham.
Mark Casstevens played acoustic guitar on seven of the ten tracks ('At Last', 'A Gifted Hand', 'You Can't Get Arrested In Nashville', 'She's Leavin' Looking Good', 'I Catch Myself', 'Only Yesterday' and 'This Country's Bigger Than Texas') on Gene Watson's 'At Last' (Warner Bros. Records, 1991).