Country music songwriter Red Lane has died at the age of 76. According to reports, Lane passed away on Wednesday evening after suffering a long illness.
A 1993 inductee in the Nashville Songwriters’ Hall of Fame, Lane was best known for the songs he wrote for country music superstars, including Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson, George Strait, and Tammy Wynette.
Born Hollis Rudolph DeLaughter, Red Lane was a native of Zona, Louisiana. As his father was also a musician, he learned to play guitar when he was only 10-years-old.
— billboard (@billboard) July 2, 2015
Although he proved to be a talented guitar player and songwriter, Lane put his music career on hold to join the United States Air Force. Following his discharge in 1958, Red Lane toured with several different bands.
As reported by Country Music Television, the legendary songwriter got his big break in 1964 when he was hired to play with Justin Tubb.
Lane eventually signed a contract with RCA, and released four singles. Unfortunately, he was not commercially successful with his own music. Instead, he will always be remembered for the songs he wrote for other musicians.
As reported by Taste of Country, Red Lane wrote hit singles for John Conlee, Vern Gosdin, Dottie West, and Keith Whitley. He also filled in as a session musician for Bobby Bare, Clarence Brown, Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson, and Waylon Jennings.
Music Row reports Lane wrote hundreds of songs. However, “Till I Get It Right,” which was originally sung by Tammy Wynette, reached number on the Billboard charts, and was later covered by Bob Dylan, Kenny Rogers, and Trisha Yearwood.
In addition to music, Red Lane also co-wrote several “Ride This Train” skits for the Johnny Cash Show.
We lost one incredible songwriter yesterday! He was just brilliant! Rest in Peace Red Lane!!! pic.twitter.com/z3FrxUlaS7
— Steve Wariner (@stevewariner) July 2, 2015
Although he was a well-respected musician and songwriter, Lane was also quite passionate about aviation. While in the Air Force, he hoped to be come a pilot. Unfortunately, as he was color blind, he was prohibited from flying. Instead, he was trained as an airplane mechanic.
Red Lane was never granted a pilot’s license. However, he eventually purchased a DC-8 plane and converted it into a home.
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