Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

TRAVIS, Randy

(b Randy Bruce Traywick, 4 May '59, Marshville NC) Country singer with sepulchral voice and ballad style. Sang country with older brother Ricky. A tearaway youngster, he dropped out of school in the ninth grade and was often in trouble with the law. Lib Hatcher ran a country music night club where he worked in the kitchen and sang; she testified on his behalf the last time he got in trouble and began managing him (after they'd been together twelve years they got married). He performed as Randy Traywick '77--80, recorded for Paula Records '78; moved to Nashville '81 and worked at Hatcher's Nashville Palace. As Randy Ray he released album Randy Ray Live '84. Signed to Warners '85 and changed name to Randy Travis; debut album Storms Of Life was a spectacular no. 1 country hit in the USA '86, with four top ten country singles, incl. 'On The Other Hand' and 'Diggin' Up Bones' at no. 1. Always And Forever '87 was also no. 1; both albums went platinum (1m copies), still unusual for country at the time. Travis, whose appeal to the country audience lies in its essentially conservative taste, was the first of the successful 'New Traditionalists' and opened the floodgates for Alan Jackson, Garth Brooks, Clint Black etc. Between '86 and '92 he had 14 no. 1 country hits incl. 'Forever And Ever Amen' (CMA Single of the Year '87), 'Deeper Than The Holler', 'Hard Rock Bottom Of Your Heart', 'Look Heart, No Hands'. Heroes And Friends '90 was a duet set featuring George Jones, Dolly Parton, Merle Haggard etc. He teamed with Jackson to co-write 'Forever Together' no. 1 '91 and also co-wrote Jackson's 'She's Got The Rhythm (And I Got The Blues)' no. 1 '92. Sidestepped into acting appearing in TV mystery series Matlock, made-for-TV movies At Risk, Dead Man's Revenge, Frank And Jesse etc. Success on singles chart dropped off mid-'90s, though he returned to no. 1 with 'Whisper My Name' '94 and albums all continued to be hits, incl. Old 8 ]multi[ 10 '88, No Holdin' Back '89, High Lonesome '91, Wind In The Wire '93, This Is Me '94, Full Circle '96 all on WB. TRENET Charles (b '13, Narbonne, France; d 18 Feb. 2001) Singer, songwriter. Published first poems at age 15; intended to be a painter, met Johnny Hess and teamed as vocal duet Charles et Johnny, successful until both drafted; worked solo after WWII, internationally popular. His poems made natural lyrics; he wrote over 500 songs, words and music for most of them, of which the best-known is 'La Mer' '38 ('Beyond The Sea' '47, English words by Jack Lawrence; lovely instrumental arr. by Percy Faith '49, hit single by Bobby Darin '60); 'Boum!' won Grand Prix du Disque '38 ('When our hearts go boom!'); also 'Vous Qui Passez Sans Me Voir' '36 (co-written with Hess; 'Why Do You Pass Me By' '36 with words by Desmond Carter, 'Passing By' '47 with words by Lawrence); 'L'Ame des PoŠtes' ('At Last! At Last!' '51, sung by Tony Martin, English words by Florence Miles; more literally 'The Poets' Dream' '59 by Mal Peters); 'Que Reste-il de Nos Amours' '46 ('I Wish You Love' '55, words by Albert A. Beach aka Lee Wilson, sung by Keely Smith and Felicia Saunders; USA top 30 hit '64 by Gloria Lynne). Many Trenet compilations from EMI France; also Boum! on ASV UK.