• The Original Gene Watson Fan Site

  • Gene Watson: 'Real Country Music' (Fourteen Carat Music, 2016)

  • Gene Watson: 'Back in the Fire & At Last' (Morello Records, 2016) / this album was officially released on Friday 11 November 2016

  • Gene Watson's Calendar

  • The Original Gene Watson Fan Site

  • Gene Watson Guitars by Summey

  • The Original Gene Watson Fan Site

  • The Original Gene Watson Fan Site

  • Gene Watson at The Opry in Nashville

  • The Original Gene Watson Fan Site

Management


Lytle Management Group
P.O. Box 128228
Nashville, TN 37212
Contact Sarah Brosmer
Telephone 615-770-2688

Bookings



Battle Artist Agency
8887 Horton Highway,
College Grove, TN
Contact Rob Battle
office: 615-368-7433
mobile: 615-957-3444

Adkins Publicity

Exclusive PR / Publicity Representation of Gene Watson / Contact Scott Adkins at Adkins Publicity in Nashville

For exclusive PR / publicity representation of Gene Watson, contact Scott Adkins at Adkins Publicity in Nashville.

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 2014, 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 John Conlee, which he submitted to this site on Saturday 7 June 2014.

Sean Brady would like to take this opportunity to say 'thank you' to John Conlee who made a special contribution to this unique part of this online 'celebration of a Lone Star Hero'.

Sean Brady would also like to say 'thank you' to Gerald Hodges, The Racing Reporter at race500.com, for his invaluable help in the acquisition of this Gene Watson 'Peer's Quote' from John Conlee.



John Conlee
This quote was submitted on Saturday 7 June 2014.

'Gene and I go back a long time.

He started a few years before I did, but we've run the road together so many times, especially in Texas.

I love Gene.

He's a one-of-a-kind singer, and we don't have those kind of folks any more.

His music is distinctive and original.

I wouldn't know how to describe his contribution to the music industry, except to say, he's one of the giants'.

Thank you, John Conlee, for your support of Gene Watson.

About John Conlee...

John Conlee was born on Sunday 11 August 1946 on a tobacco farm in Versailles, Kentucky. By the age of ten, John had begun singing and playing guitar, and later sang tenor in a barbershop quartet.

Born and raised in Kentucky farm country, John Conlee grew up plowing fields, slopping hogs, harvesting grain, raising tobacco and tending cattle. John began his crusade to save the family farm system several years ago, performing a concert in Omaha, Nebraska in June 1985 as a benefit for the National Farmers Organisation. When Willie nelson announced his plans for the Farm Aid concerts, John Conlee called and offered his services. John Conlee has since been part of nine Farm Aid concerts, which have raised $13m to aid the family farmer.

John Conlee did not immediately take up a musical career, instead becoming a licensed mortician, employed by Duell-Clark Funeral Chapel, 241 Rose Hill Avenue in Versailles, Kentucky, and later a disc jockey at radio station WLAC.

By 1971, John Conlee had moved to Nashville, in pursuit of a musical career.

John Conlee secured a recording contract with ABC Records in 1976 through Dick Kent, a disk jockey at WLAC-FM in Nashville, where John was working in the same capacity.

Dick Kent introduced John Conlee to ABC Records executive Jim Foglesong, who signed him to the label. John Conlee saw the release of three singles by July 1977. None of the singles charted, but ABC Records decided to re-release 'Backside Of Thirty' (written by John Conlee).

John Conlee charted for the first time in 1978 with 'Rose Colored Glasses' (written by John Conlee and George Baber); the track, which reached No.5 on the Billboard country music singles chart, was the title track of John Conlee's debut album, 'Rose Colored Glasses' (ABC Records, 1978), and became his signature song.

In October 1978, John Conlee saw the release of his debut album for ABC Records, 'Rose Colored Glasses' (ABC Records, 1978), which was originally released as ABC 1105 and re-issued as MCA-3281 and MCA-873; the album reached No.11 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart.

'Rose Colored Glasses' (ABC Records, 1978), which was produced by Bud Logan, included John Conlee's first two Billboard No.1 country music hit singles:

'Lady Lay Down' (written by Don Cook and Rafe VanHoy) (No.1 for one week in January 1979)
'Backside Of Thirty' (written by John Conlee) (No.1 for one week in May 1979)

John Conlee's debut album album for ABC Records, 'Rose Colored Glasses' (ABC Records, 1978), also included the following tracks:

'I'll Be Easy' (written by John Conlee)
'She Loves My Troubles Away' which was written by Rayburn Anthony and Max D. Barnes (Friday 24 July 1936 - Sunday 11 January 2004)
'Just Let It Slide', which was written by Arthur Leo 'Doodle' Owens (Friday 28 November 1930 - Monday 4 October 1999)
'Some Old California Memory', which was written by Arthur Leo 'Doodle' Owens (Friday 28 November 1930 - Monday 4 October 1999) and Warren D. Robb
'Hold On' (written by John Conlee and Dick Kent)
'Something Special' (written by Dave Loggins)
'Let Your Love Fall Back On Me' (written by John Conlee)

Musicians who participated in the recording sessions for 'Rose Colored Glasses' (ABC Records, 1978) included the following:

Larrie Londin (Friday 15 October 1943 - Monday 24 August 1992) (drums, percussion)
Joe Osborn (bass)
Ron Oates (keyboards)
John Propst (piano)
Steve 'Juke' Logan (saxophone)
Buddy Emmons (steel guitar)
Billy Sanford and Dale Sellers (guitars)
Buddy Spicher (fiddle)

John Conlee's 'Rose Colored Glasses' (ABC Records, 1978) featured Lea Jane Berinati, Mary Fielder, Janie Fricke and Ginger Holladay on backing vocals.

On Monday 5 March 1979, MCA Records absorbed ABC Records, two days after John Conlee's 'Backside of Thirty' entered the Billboard country music singles chart.

John Conlee's 'Backside of Thirty' was the last ABC Records release to reach No.1 on the Billboard country music singles chart.

It was also in May 1979 when the Academy of Country Music (ACM) named John Conlee 'Best New Male Vocalist'.

In August 1979, John Conlee saw the release of 'Forever' (MCA Records, 1979), which included two tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard country music singles chart:

'Before My Time' (No.2, 1979)
'Baby, You're Something', which was written by Curly Putman (Thursday 20 November 1930 - Sunday 30 October 2016), Rafe VanHoy and Don Cook (No.7, 1980)

John Conlee's 'Forever' (MCA Records, 1979) also included 'You Never Cross My Mind' (written by Deborah Allen).

John Conlee's 'Forever' (MCA Records, 1979) reached No.20 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1979.

In May 1980, John Conlee saw the release of 'Friday Night Blues' (MCA Records, 1980), which included three tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard country music singles chart:

'Friday Night Blues' (written by Sonny Throckmorton and Rafe VanHoy) (No.2, 1980)
'She Can't Say That Anymore' (written by Sonny Throckmorton) (No.2, 1980)
'What I Had With You', which was written by Curly Putman (Thursday 20 November 1930 - Sunday 30 October 2016) and Sonny Throckmorton (No.12, 1981)

John Conlee's 'Friday Night Blues' (MCA Records, 1980) also included the following tracks:

'Honky Tonk Toys', which was written by Arthur Leo 'Doodle' Owens (Friday 28 November 1930 - Monday 4 October 1999) and Judy Vowell
'Old Fashioned Love' (written by Don Cook and Jamie O'Hara)
'Misery Loves Company', which was written by Jerry Reed Hubbard (Saturday 20 March 1937 - Monday 1 September 2008)
'Let's Get Married Again' (written by Rory Bourke, Charlie Black and Jerry Gillespie)
'When I'm Out of You' (written by Sanger D. 'Whitey' Shafer and Sonny Throckmorton)
'We Belong in Love Tonight' (written by Mark Paden)
'Always True' (written by David Loggins)

John Conlee's 'Friday Night Blues' (MCA Records, 1980) reached No.16 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1979.

John Conlee's version of 'Friday Night Blues' was the first credit for session guitarist Brent Rowan, who soon became the only guitarist which John Conlee used under the production of Bud Logan.

Brent Rowan produced Gene Watson's 'In A Perfect World' (Shanachie Records, 2007), which was released on Tuesday 25 September 2007.

In July 1981, John Conlee saw the release of 'With Love' (MCA Records, 1981), which included two tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard country music singles chart:

'Could You Love Me (One More Time)' (No.26, 1981)
'Miss Emily's Picture', which was written by Red Lane (Thursday 2 February 1939 - Wednesday 1 July 2015) (No.2, 1981)

John Conlee's 'With Love' (MCA Records, 1981) reached No.22 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1981.


In 1981, John Conlee became a member of The Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.


In April 1982, John Conlee saw the release of 'Busted' (MCA Records, 1982), which included four tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard country music singles chart:

'Busted', which was written, in 1962, by Harlan Howard (Thursday 8 September 1927 - Sunday 3 March 2002) (No.6, 1982)
'Nothing Behind You, Nothing In Sight', which was written by Harlan Howard (Thursday 8 September 1927 - Sunday 3 March 2002) (No.26, 1982)
'I Don't Remember Loving You', which was written by Harlan Howard (Thursday 8 September 1927 - Sunday 3 March 2002) and Bobby Braddock (No.10, 1982)
'Common Man', which was written by Sammy Johns (Thursday 7 February 1946 - Friday 4 January 2013) (No.1 for one week in May 1983)

John Conlee's 'Busted' (MCA Records, 1982), which reached No.21 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1982, also included 'Two Hearts' (written by Ron Hellard, Michael Garvin and Bucky Jones).

In April 1983, John Conlee saw the release of his first 'Greatest Hits' (MCA Records, 1983), a compilation album, which included the following Billboard country music hit singles:

'Rose Colored Glasses' (written by John Conlee and George Baber) (No.5, 1978)
'Friday Night Blues' (written by Sonny Throckmorton) (No.2, 1980)
'Lady Lay Down' (written by Don Cook and Rafe VanHoy) (No.1 for one week in January 1979)
'She Can't Say That Anymore' (written by Sonny Throckmorton) (No.2, 1980)
'Baby You're Something', which was written by Curly Putman (Thursday 20 November 1930 - Sunday 30 October 2016), Rafe VanHoy and Don Cook (No.7, 1979)
'Backside of Thirty' (written by John Conlee) (No.1 for one week in May 1979)
'Miss Emily's Picture', which was written by Red Lane (Thursday 2 February 1939 - Wednesday 1 July 2015) (No.2, 1981)
'Busted', which was written by Harlan Howard (Thursday 8 September 1927 - Sunday 3 March 2002) (No.6, 1982)
'Common Man', which was written by Sammy Johns (Thursday 7 February 1946 - Friday 4 January 2013) (No.1 for one week in May 1983)
'I Don't Remember Loving You', which was written by Harlan Howard (Thursday 8 September 1927 - Sunday 3 March 2002) and Bobby Braddock (No.10, 1982)

John Conlee's first 'Greatest Hits' (MCA Records, 1983) compilation album reached No.17 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart in 1983.

In August 1983, John Conlee saw the release of 'In My Eyes' (MCA Records, 1983), which included four tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard country music singles chart:

'I'm Only In It For The Love' (written by Deborah Allen, Kix Brooks and Rafe VanHoy) (No.1 for one week in September 1983)
'In My Eyes' (written by Barbara Wyrick) (No.1 for one week in January 1984)
'As Long As I'm Rockin' With You' (written by Kieran Kane and Bruce Channel) (No.1 for one week in May 1984)
'Way Back' (written by Jerry Fuller) (No.4, 1984)

John Conlee's 'In My Eyes' (MCA Records, 1983) reached No.9 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart in 1983.

John Conlee dedicated the title track of 'In My Eyes' (MCA Records, 1983) to his wife Gale; John and Gale were married on Sunday 25 April 1982.

In October 1984, John Conlee saw the release of 'Blue Highway' (MCA Records, 1984), which included three tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard country music singles chart:

'Years After You' (written by Thom Schuyler) (No.2, 1984)
'Working Man' (written by Jim Hurt and Billy Ray Reynolds) (No.7, 1985)
'Blue Highway' (written by Don Henry and David Womack) (No.15, 1985)

John Conlee's 'Blue Highway' (MCA Records, 1984) also included Don Henry's 'De Island' (co-written with Billy Simon).

John Conlee's 'Blue Highway' (MCA Records, 1984) was his last studio album for MCA Records and reached No.14 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1984.

In October 1985, John Conlee saw the release of his second compilation album, 'Greatest Hits, Volume 2' (MCA Records, 1985), which reached No.33 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1985.

John Conlee's 'Greatest Hits, Volume 2' (MCA Records, 1985) included two previously unreleased tracks, 'Lifetime Guarantee' and 'Old School' (written by Russell Smith and Don Schlitz); the latter track reached No.5 on the Billboard country music singles chart in 1985.

In 1986, John Conlee moved to Columbia Records and saw the release, in February 1986, of his first album for the label, 'Harmony' (Columbia Records, 1986), which included three tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard country music singles chart:

'Harmony' (written by Jimbeau Hinson and Rick Ellsworth) (No.10, 1986)
'Got My Heart Set on You', which was written by Dobie Gray (Friday 26 July 1940 - Tuesday 6 December 2011) and Bud Reneau (No.1 for one week in September 1986)
'The Carpenter', which was written by Guy Clark (Thursday 6 November 1941 - Tuesday 17 May 2016) (No.6, January 1987)

John Conlee's 'Harmony' (Columbia Records, 1986) reached No.9 on the Billboard Top Country albums chart in 1986.

John Conlee's 'Harmony' (Columbia Records, 1986) also included 'Class Reunion' (written by Craig Morris and Don Henry), which Gene Watson also recorded and included on 'In Other Words' (Broadland International Records / Mercury Canada, 1992).

In September 1986, John Conlee saw the release of his second, and final, album for Columbia Records, 'American Faces' (Columbia Records, 1986), which included three tracks, which were hit singles on the Billboard country music singles chart:

'Domestic Life' (written by JD Martin and Gary Harrison) (No.4, 1987)
'Mama's Rockin' Chair' (No.11, 1987)
'Living Like There's No Tomorrow (Finally Got To Me Tonight)' (written by Jim McBride and Roger Murrah) (No.55, 1987)

John Conlee's 'American Faces' (Columbia Records, 1986) reached No.16 on the Billboard Top Country albums chart in 1987.

Following his departure from Columbia Records, John Conlee moved to the roster at 16th Avenue Records, which was a division of Opryland Music Group; John Conlee saw the release, in February 1989, of 'Fellow Travelers' (16th Avenue Records, 1989), which included three tracks which were hit singles on the Billboard country music singles chart:

'Hit The Ground Running' (written by Bob Fisher and Rick Giles) (No.43, 1988)
'Fellow Travelers' (written by Wayland Patton and Jim Rushing) (No.48, 1989)
'Hopelessly Yours', which was written by Keith Whitley (Thursday 1 July 1954 - Tuesday 9 May 1989), Curly Putman and Don Cook (No.67, 1989)

John Conlee's 'Fellow Travelers' (16th Avenue Records, 1989) also included the following tracks:

'Where are the Pieces of My Heart' (written by Hugh Prestwood)
'River of Time' (written by Larry Cordle and Jim Rushing)
'Until You were Gone' (written by Rory Bourke and Mike Reid)
'I Had The Time & Money Too' (written by Hugh Prestwood)
'Knowin' You were Leavin' (written by Mike Reid and Tommy Rocco)
'Don't Get Me Started' (written by Hugh Prestwood)
'Almost Free' (written by Hugh Prestwood)

John Conlee's 'Fellow Travelers' (16th Avenue Records, 1989) reached No.60 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in 1987.

John Conlee: 'Live at Billy Bob's, Texas' (Smith Music Group Records, 1999)

In April 1999, John Conlee saw the release of 'Live at Billy Bob's, Texas' (Smith Music Group Records, 1999); this 'live' album included 'Doghouse' (written by Kenny Beard, John Bicknell and Michael Grady), which reached No.61 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart, when it was released as a single on 16th Avenue Records, in 1990.

On Tuesday 25 November 2003, John Conlee saw the release of 'Classics' (Rose Colored Records, 2003), a collection of twenty-two of his classic songs, including three new tracks. All tracks had been digitally remastered.

On Tuesday 8 March 2005, Craig Morgan saw the release of 'My Kind of Livin' (Broken Bow Records, 2005); one of the tracks included on the album was 'Blame Me' (written by Craig Morgan, Phil O'Donnell and Tim Owens), which featured guest vocals from John Conlee and Brad Paisley.

On Tuesday 29 August 2006, John Conlee saw the release of 'Country Heart' (Varese Sarabande Records, 2006), which included sixteen tracks, nine of which were previously unreleased.

John Conlee's 'Country Heart' (Varese Sarabande Records, 2006) included the following tracks:

'She Woke Up Leavin', which was written by Kent M. Robbins (Wednesday 23 April 1947 - Saturday 27 December 1997) •
'Hit The Ground Running' (written by Bobby Fisher and Rick Giles)
'River Of Time' (written by Jim Rushing)
'Country Heart' (written by Larry Byrom) •
'Fellow Travelers' (written by Wayland Patton and Jim Rushing)
'Indian Head Penny', which was written by Guy Clark (Thursday 6 November 1941 - Tuesday 17 May 2016) and Verlon Thompson) •
'I Had The Time & Money Too' (written by Hugh Prestwood)
'Black Label, White Lies' (written by Scotty Wiseman) •
'Doghouse' (written by Kenny Beard and Michael Grady)
'Midnight's Murder On Me', which was written by Kent M. Robbins (Wednesday 23 April 1947 - Saturday 27 December 1997) •
'Until You were Gone' (written by Rory Bourke and Mike Reid)
'I'm Not That Good At Goodbye', which was written by Bob McDill and Don Williams (Saturday 27 May 1939 - Friday 8 September 2017) •
'Hopelessly Yours', which was written by Don Cook, Curly Putman (Thursday 20 November 1930 - Sunday 30 October 2016) and Keith Whitley (Thursday 1 July 1954 - Tuesday 9 May 1989)
'I Can't Stand to Watch My Old Flame Burn' (written by Curtis Wright) •
'Nothing's Changed', which was written by Kent M. Robbins (Wednesday 23 April 1947 - Saturday 27 December 1997) •
'Love Stands Tall', which was written by Steve Dean, Sam Hogin (1950 - Monday 9 August 2004) and Wayland Holyfield •

Tracks indicated by • were recorded in 1990 and were previously unreleased.

John Conlee: 'Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus' (RCR, 2006)

On Tuesday 5 September 2006, John Conlee saw the release of 'Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus' (Rose Colored Records, 2006).

Dion Pride recorded John Conlee's 'Rose Colored Glasses' and included the track on 'Fourteen Carat Mind' (Dion Pride Music, 2011).

John Conlee is a lot like the songs of which he sings. John Conlee lives a domestic life with his wife Gale and has three children, Rebecca, Jessica and Johnny.

During the 1970s and 1980s, John Conlee achieved a level of success which he sustained by simply being himself and by making records that the listening public could relate to.

John Conlee performing at 37th Annual Hank Williams Festival in Georgiana, Alabama on Friday 6 June 2014

Photo courtesy of Gerald Hodges, The Racing Reporter For The Best in Racine News & Books at race500.com

Connect with John Conlee at johnconlee.com

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Since February 1998, England-based Hux Records have been specialists in releasing classic archive recordings.

Gene Watson Fan Site