1961 in country music

Last updated

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in 1961.


List of years in country music (table)


No dates

With just a $1,500 budget, bronze plaques honoring each of the singers would be cast, a tradition that continues today.

Top hits of the year

Number one hits

United States

(as certified by Billboard)

DateSingle NameArtistWks. No.1Spec. Note
January 9 North to Alaska Johnny Horton 5 [B]
February 27 Don't Worry Marty Robbins 10
May 8 Hello Walls Faron Young 9
  • Young's first Billboard Number One since "Country Girl" in 1959.
July 10 Heartbreak U.S.A. Kitty Wells 4 [B]
August 7 I Fall to Pieces Patsy Cline 2 [1] [A]
August 21 Tender Years George Jones 7 [2]
September 25 Walk on By Leroy Van Dyke 19 [2] [C]
November 20 Big Bad John Jimmy Dean 2 [A]
  • [1] No. 1 song of the year, as determined by Billboard .
  • [2] Song dropped from No. 1 and later returned to top spot.
  • [A] First Billboard No. 1 hit for that artist.
  • [B] Last Billboard No. 1 hit for that artist.
  • [C] Only Billboard No. 1 hit for that artist to date.

Other major hits

8Backtrack Faron Young
9Be Quiet Mind Del Reeves
5Beggar to a King Hank Snow
18 Big, Big Love Wynn Stewart
7Big River, Big Man Claude King
16Black Land Farmer Frankie Miller
4The Blizzard Jim Reeves
14 Blue Blue Day The Wilburn Brothers
14Conscience I'm Guilty Rose Maddox
16Cozy Inn Leon McAuliffe
11Crazy Bullfrog Lewis Pruitt
15 Did I Ever Tell You George Jones and Margie Singleton
14 Diggy Liggy Lo Rusty & Doug
14Don't Let Your Sweet Love Die Reno and Smiley
14Everybody's Dying for Love Jimmy C. Newman
16 Family Bible George Jones
9Flat Top Cowboy Copas
2 Foolin' Around Buck Owens
15Forever Gone Ernest Ashworth
20Forget the PastFaron Young
12From Here to There to You Hank Locklin
10Go Home Flatt & Scruggs
11 The Hands You're Holding Now Skeeter Davis
12Hangover Tavern Hank Thompson
7Happy Birthday to MeHank Locklin
5Heart Over Mind Ray Price
4Hello Fool Ralph Emery
7How Do You Talk to a Baby Webb Pierce
5I Dreamed of a Hill-Billy Heaven Tex Ritter
12I Love You Best of All The Louvin Brothers
15I Want to Live AgainRose Maddox
9I Went Out of My Way (To Make You Happy) Roy Drusky
10I'd Rather Loan You OutRoy Drusky
4I'll Just Have a Cup of Coffee (Then I'll Go) Claude Gray
17In Memory of Johnny Horton Johnny Hardy
3It's Your World Marty Robbins
11Kisses Never Lie Carl Smith
14Kissing My PillowRose Maddox
11 Last Date Floyd Cramer
5Let Forgiveness InWebb Pierce
20Lonelyville Ray Sanders
4 Loose Talk Buck Owens and Rose Maddox
10 Louisiana Man Rusty & Doug
7Loving You (Was Worth This Broken Heart) Bob Gallion
8Mental CrueltyBuck Owens and Rose Maddox
3My Ears Should Burn (When Fools Are Talked About)Claude Gray
5 My Last Date (With You) Skeeter Davis
7Odds and Ends (Bits and Pieces) Warren Smith
13 Oh Lonesome Me Johnny Cash
7 Oklahoma Hills Hank Thompson
17One Grain of Sand Eddy Arnold
14One Step Ahead of My PastHank Locklin
20One Way StreetBob Gallion
10 Optimistic Skeeter Davis
19The Other Cheek Kitty Wells
11Please Mr. Kennedy Jim Nesbitt
9 Po' Folks Bill Anderson
12Polka on a BanjoFlatt & Scruggs
15 Ragged but Right Moon Mullican
11The Restless OneHank Snow
9 Right or Wrong Wanda Jackson
8 San Antonio Rose Floyd Cramer
2 Sea of Heartbreak Don Gibson
16Shorty Jimmy Smart
10 Signed Sealed and Delivered Cowboy Copas
20Sleep, Baby, Sleep Connie Hall
9 Sleepy-Eyed John Johnny Horton
3Soft RainRay Price
16Stand at Your WindowJim Reeves
12Sunny TennesseeCowboy Copas
6 Sweet Dreams Don Gibson
3Sweet LipsWebb Pierce
20Sweethearts AgainBob Gallion
20There Must Be Another Way to LiveKitty Wells
16Thoughts of a Fool Ernest Tubb
2 Three Hearts in a Tangle Roy Drusky
9Three Steps to the Phone (Millions of Miles) George Hamilton IV
14Through That DoorErnest Tubb
13To You and Yours (From Me and Mine)George Hamilton IV
10Too Many Times Don Winters
13Twenty-Fourth HourRay Price
2Under the Influence of LoveBuck Owens
9 Walk Out Backwards Bill Anderson
5Walking the StreetsWebb Pierce
15What Would You DoJim Reeves
6When Two Worlds Collide Roger Miller
2 Window Up Above George Jones
8 Wreck on the Highway Wilma Lee and Stoney Cooper
14You Don't Want My LoveRoger Miller
4 You're the Reason Bobby Edwards
14 You're the Reason Hank Locklin
16 You're the Reason Joe South
10Your Old Love Letters Porter Wagoner

Top new album releases

SingleArtistRecord Label
At the Golden Nugget Hank Thompson Capitol
Buck Owens Buck Owens Capitol
Buck Owens Sings Harlan Howard Buck OwensCapitol
Chet Atkins' Workshop Chet Atkins RCA
Cowboy Copas Sings the Songs That Made Him Famous Cowboy Copas Starday
Got You on My Mind Jean Shepard Capitol
Here's the Answer Skeeter Davis RCA
Hank Snow Souvenirs Hank Snow RCA
Chet Atkins in Hollywood Chet AtkinsRCA
Let's Make Memories Tonight Eddy Arnold RCA
A Man and His GuitarChet AtkinsRCA
The Most Popular Guitar Chet AtkinsRCA
Our Favorite Folk Songs The Browns RCA
Patsy Cline Showcase Patsy Cline Decca
Right or Wrong Wanda Jackson Capitol
San Antonio Rose Ray Price Columbia
The Wild, Wicked But Wonderful West Johnny Bond Starday
The Versatile Burl Ives Burl Ives Decca



Country Music Hall of Fame Inductees

Major awards

Grammy Awards

See also

Further reading

Related Research Articles

Hank Snow Country musician

Clarence Eugene "Hank" Snow was a Canadian-American country music artist. Most popular in the 1950s, he had a career that spanned more than 50 years, he recorded 140 albums and charted more than 85 singles on the Billboard country charts from 1950 until 1980. His number-one hits include the self-penned songs "I'm Moving On", "The Golden Rocket" and The Rhumba Boogie and famous versions of "I Don't Hurt Anymore", "Let Me Go, Lover!", "I've Been Everywhere", "Hello Love", as well as other top 10 hits.

Ernest Tubb American singer and songwriter of country music

Ernest Dale Tubb, nicknamed the Texas Troubadour, was an American singer and songwriter and one of the pioneers of country music. His biggest career hit song, "Walking the Floor Over You" (1941), marked the rise of the honky tonk style of music.

Hank Thompson (musician) American country musician

Henry William Thompson was an American country music singer-songwriter and musician whose career spanned seven decades.

Lefty Frizzell Country music singer-songwriter

William Orville "Lefty" Frizzell was an American country music singer-songwriter and honky-tonk singer.

Jimmie Rodgers (country singer) American country singer

James Charles Rodgers was an American singer-songwriter and musician who rose to popularity in the late 1920s. Widely regarded as "the Father of Country Music", he is best known for his distinctive rhythmic yodeling. Unusual for a music star of his era, Rodgers rose to prominence based upon his recordings, among country music's earliest, rather than concert performances – which followed to similar public acclaim.

Kitty Wells American country music singer

Ellen Muriel Deason, known professionally as Kitty Wells, was an American pioneering female country music singer. She broke down a barrier to women in country music with her 1952 hit recording "It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels", which also made her the first female country singer to top the U.S. country charts and turned her into the first female country superstar. “It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels” would also be her first of several pop crossover hits. Wells is the only artist to be awarded top female vocalist awards for 14 consecutive years. Her chart-topping hits continued until the mid 1960s, paving the way for and inspiring a long list of female country singers who came to prominence in the 1960s.

Knowles Fred Rose was an American musician, Hall of Fame songwriter, and music publishing executive.

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in the year 1975.

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in the year 1978.

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in the year 1979.

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in 1966.

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in 1965.

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in 1964.

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in 1962.

It Wasnt God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels 1952 song performed by Kitty Wells

"It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels" is a 1952 country song written by J. D. "Jay" Miller, and originally recorded by Kitty Wells. It was an answer song to the Hank Thompson hit "The Wild Side of Life."

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in the year 1955.

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in the year 1954.

Floyd Tillman was an American country musician who, in the 1930s and 1940s, helped create the Western swing and honky tonk genres. Tillman was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1970 and the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1984.

See also: 1920 in country music and the List of years in country music

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in the year 1927.