Randy Owen

portraitrandyBorn and raised in Welland, Ont., Randy's award-winning broadcasting career began with two consecutive awards for the top mark in radio class at Niagara College. While a first year college student, he began working evenings and weekends at 1470 CHOW, his hometown country music station. Eventually, Randy worked his way to mid-day announcer and music director.

Randy spent nine years working afternoon drive at CKGL in Kitchener and went on to become music director. In 1988, he became the first (and only) person to win both national Canadian country music awards (RPM Big Country Awards, Canadian Country Music Association) for on-air personality in the same year.

In 1997, Randy hosted the popular cross-Canada country music request show "Cryin'', Lovin'' or Leavin''" via satellite for three years.

Randy came to Tillsonburg and Country 107.3 in October 2007, bringing a wealth of experience and love of country music, from the classics to today's hits.

Other career highlights include emceeing a concert in October 2009 at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, serving as the voice announcer for the Ontario country music awards show, and inducting guitar great Wendell Ferguson into the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame.

Randy has interviewed a long list of country music personalities, including Johnny Cash, Johnny Reid, Garth Brooks, Gord Bamford, Vince Gill, Terri Clark, Faith Hill, Paul Brandt, Waylon Jennings, Shania Twain, George Jones and many, many more! And you may catch him singing a Cash or Haggard song at a jam or concert in the area.

Join Randy weekdays from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm.

A Model Artist

Randy Owen
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Happy 32nd birthday today to singer/songwriter Brittany Brodie!  From Mount Forest, Ont., she was a model as a child, doing photo shoots for a modelling agency owned by her mom (and she still models).  Inspired by different styles of music, she grew up listening to traditional country music, later listening to contemporary artists like The Dixie Chicks, Rascal Flatts and Lee Ann Womack.  Earlier this year, she sang with Vince Gill's group, The Time Jumpers, in Nashville and recently completed a cross-Canada radio tour to promote her current single, "I Do."
Brittany Brodie
Brittany Brodie
Also Celebrating Birthdays Today:  Canadian singer/songwriter Aiden McGill turns 44 (he played trumpet in the school band); and producer musician Jim Ed Norman turns 69 (in addition to producing the "Urban Cowboy" soundtrack album and several artists, including Canadians Anne Murray and Chris Cummings, he played piano on several early Eagles albums, among them "Desperado," "One of These Nights" and "Hotel California."
Also Born on This Date:  Canadian singer/songwriter Smiley Bates in 1937, in Kirkland Lake, Ont. (he died in 1997); and singer/fiddle player Stoney Cooper, of the husband-and-wife duo Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper, in 1918, in Harman, West Virginia (he died in 1977).
Passages:  musician and producer John Jennings in 2015, of kidney cancer at age 61 (he produced albums by such artists as Mary Chapin Carpenter, George Jones, The Rankin Family and many others); pop and country singer, songwriter and actor Sheb Wooley in 2003, of leukemia at age 82; Ken Marvin, the first Lonzo of the Lonzo & Oscar country comedy duo, in 1991 at age 67; and bluegrass banjo player Don Reno in 1984, of heart failure at age 57; Virgil "Doyle" Wilburn, of The Wilburn Brothers, in 1982, of cancer at age 52.
Welcome to the Hall:  one year ago today, Randy Travis appeared at his induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville.  Still recovering from a life-threatening stroke three years earlier, he sang "Amazing Grace," bringing the stunned crowd to tears.  Fiddler Charlie Daniels and record producer Fred Foster were also inducted into the Hall.
More Inductions:  five years ago today, Darius Rucker became a member of the Grand Ole Opry, just the third black performer after DeFord Bailey and Charley Pride; and six years ago today, Garth Brooks and Alan Jackson were inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, along with songwriters John Bettis, Thom Schuyler and Allen Shamblin (Taylor Swift won Songwriter/Artist of the Year for the fourth time and Kimberly Perry, of The Band Perry, won Song of the Year for "If I Die Young").
Sold:  on this date in 1994, Conway Twitty's multi-million dollar estate and tourist attraction known as Twitty City was auctioned off in Hendersonville, Tenn.  Many of his belongings were sold, too.  A judge had ordered the auction after a dispute over Conway's will among three of his children and his widow.  Conway had died the year before.  The Trinity Broadcasting Corporation had bought the estate, using it mainly for their Sunday broadcasts.  They stopped giving tours of his mansion last year.
Party Participants:  on this date in 1976, singers/songwriters Rosanne Cash and Rodney Crowell met at a party.  They later married and collaborated on several projects together in the 1980's before divorcing in 1992.
And 24 years ago today, a 66-year-old man collapsed with a heart attack in the lobby of Boxcar Willie's theater in Branson, Missouri.  His life was saved when CPR was performed on him until paramedics arrived.  The man who did the life-saving CPR was Boxcar Willie!
Last Updated ( Monday, 16 October 2017 08:10 )

Passing the Torch?

Randy Owen
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On this date in 1975, Charlie Rich, the previous year's winner of the Country Music Association's Entertainer of the Year award, read the list of nominees and then set fire to the card with the winner's name on it before announcing the name of the winner!  John Denver, the winner, was linked via satellite to the show and was unaware of what had just happened.  He graciously accepted the honour.  Some people interpreted the act as a statement against the growing influence of pop music on country music.  Charlie was blacklisted from future CMA award shows and later admitted to being on prescription medication and under the influence of gin and tonic.
Charlie Rich
Charlie Rich
Charlie Rich
Charlie Rich
Celebrating Birthdays Today:  singer/songwriter Rhett Akins, Thomas Rhett's dad, turns 48 (a successful solo artist in the 1990's, he's written or co-written several hits like Blake Shelton's "Boys 'Round Here" and "Honey Bee," Jon Pardi's "Dirt on My Boots" and Dustin Lynch's "Small Town Boy"); John Wiggins, of the brother/sister duo The Wiggins, turns 55; singer and actress Marie Osmond turns 58 (she was born on her dad's 48th birthday!); and singer/songwriter Lacy J. Dalton turns 71.
Passages:  singer Stevedore Steve, whose real name was Steven Foote, died one year ago today in Saint John, New Brunswick, at age 80 after suffering from stomach cancer (his 1967 novelty song, "Lester the Lobster," was a huge Canadian hit); and Big Slim, The Lone Cowboy, whose real name was Harry C. McAuliffe, in 1966 (he was a huge star on the WWVA Wheeling Jamboree and was a huge influence on Hank Snow).
Happy Anniversary:  26 years ago today, singer Kelita Haverland married musician Gord Lemon.
Awards:  last year, Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize in literature, the first time in the 115-year history of the award it was given to someone primarily considered to be a musician; in 2013, Taylor Swift won her record sixth Songwriter/Artist of the Year award from the Nashville Songwriters Association International (she beat the previous record of five wins, held jointly by Vince Gill and Alan Jackson); and in 2008, Alan Jackson won the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) Songwriter/Artist of the Year award, while Reba McEntire received their Golden Note award presented to those who've achieved extraordinary career milestones.
Acquittal:  18 years ago today, singer Johnny Rodriguez was acquitted of murdering a man he accused of breaking into his home in Sabinal, Texas, the previous year.  During the seven-day trial, the defense argued Johnny had acted in self-defence.
Concerts:  six years ago today, the CMT Hitlist Tour, featuring Deric Ruttan, Aaron Lines and Dean Brody, played Cowboys nightclub in London, Ont. (I had already seen the show a few days earlier in Brantford and was in the audience for the London show); and eight years ago today, Keith Urban and Vince Gill co-hosted an all-star concert (Faith Hill, Brad Paisley and Taylor Swift were among the performers) to raise money for the Country Music Hall of Fame (the "We're All for the Hall" concert raised over $300,000).
And on this date in 1951, Lefty Frizzell had four of the Top 10 hits on the Billboard Country chart, the only artist to achieve such a feat.  Among them was "Always Late," later covered by Dwight Yoakam.
Last Updated ( Friday, 13 October 2017 09:42 )

The Fiddlin' Dixie Chick

Randy Owen
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Happy 48th birthday today to Martha "Martie" Erwin of The Dixie Chicks!  Born in York, Pennsylvania, she was married to Ted Seidel from 1995-1999 and married Gareth Maguire in 2001.  A national fiddling champion when she was a teenager, Martie plays several other instruments including the mandolin.  She also wrote or co-wrote such Chicks' hits as "Cowboy Take Me Away," "Ready to Run" and "You Were Mine."  The Dixie Chicks' album, "DCX MMXVI Live," consisting of two CD's of live recordings from their tour last year and a DVD of concert footage, and is in stores now.
Dixie Chicks
Dixie Chicks
Also Celebrating Birthdays Today:  Ontario guitarist Kyle Renton turns 18 (he's impressed delegates at the last Country Music Week events in Saskatoon and London during hotel lobby jams); Invictus Entertainment Group Vice President Rob Cyrynowski turns 48; and actress, model and singer Susan Anton turns 67.
Also Born on This Date: harmonica player and percussionist Terry McMillan, who also played on recording sessions for Garth Brooks, Johnny Cash, Ray Charles, Kenny Chesney, The Dixie Chicks, Merle Haggard, Emmylou Harris, Waylon Jennings, George Jones, Reba McEntire, Roy Orbison, Dolly Parton, Randy Travis and Trisha Yearwood, in 1953 (he died in 2007).
Passages:  The Charlie Daniels Band's keyboard player, Joel "Taz" DiGregorio, in 2011, in a single-vehicle crash in Cheatham City, Tenn. (he co-wrote their signature song "The Devil Went Down to Georgia"); singer/songwriter John Denver in 1997, in the crash of his experimental fiberglass plane in Monterey Bay, Cali.; and rock and roll star Gene Vincent in 1971, of a bleeding ulcer at age 36 (his most famous hit, "Be-Bop-A-Lula," had peaked at #5 on the country charts in 1956).
Happy Anniversary:  singer Thomas Rhett and his wife, Lauren, celebrate their fifth wedding anniversary today.  Earlier this year, they became parents with the birth of one daughter and the adoption of another.
Bitter End:  eleven years ago today, singer Sara Evans quit "Dancing With the Stars" and filed for divorce from her husband of 13 years.
Debuting at the Top:  six years ago today, eighteen-year-old "American Idol" winner Scotty McCreery's debut album, "Clear as Day," debuted at the top of the Billboard 200 Album chart, making him the first country artist to debut on that chart with their first studio album and the youngest male to debut at #1 with his first album.
Twice is Nice:  three years ago today, Taylor Swift was named Billboard magazine's "Woman of the Year."  She had previously won it in 2011, making her the first person to win the award twice!
More Awards:  seven years ago today, Loretta Lynn received a special presentation of the Recording Academy President's Merit Award at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville in honour of her career and contributions to country music; and eight years ago today, Chet Atkins and Charlie Daniels were inducted into the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum.
Taylor Made:  four years ago today, Taylor Swift opened her own education center, cutting the ribbon in Nashville.  Three classes were going on even as it was opening.
Last Updated ( Thursday, 12 October 2017 08:18 )

Gene Watson: The Singer's Singer

Randy Owen
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Happy 74th birthday today to singer Gene Watson!  Born in Palestine and raised in Paris (both are towns in Texas, BTW), he's worked professionally since the age of 13.  Gene has had almost 50 singles on the country music charts from 1975-1997, including hits written by Canadians like the late Ray Griff and Dallas Harms.  Never straying from his traditional country sound, he's also had a lifelong love of cars, getting a job picking up scrap metal at a car junkyard before he was a teenager.  In his teens, Gene and his brother got paid to sing at a local show, receiving a standing ovation.  He says, "I was hooked on the notion I could get paid for doing a little singing to help pay for a car."  IMO, he's a prime candidate for induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame and should have been inducted a long time ago.  Happy birthday, Gene!
Gene Watson
Also Celebrating Birthdays Today:  northern Ontario singer/songwriter Cory Marquardt turns 28 (listen for some new music from Cory coming soon); southern Ontario singer/songwriter Shawn Brush (nicknamed The Krooked Cowboy) marks another year around the sun; singer/songwriter Todd Snider turns 51; Canadian country singer Susan Tyler turns 53; singer/songwriter/guitarist J.K. Gulley is another year older (he's been the longtime bandleader for Canadian country legend Carroll Baker); Paulette Carlson, lead singer with the group Highway 101, turns 65; and London, Ontario singer/songwriter Les Holmes adds another candle to his birthday cake.
Also Born on This Date:  singer/songwriter Dottie West, who had a successful solo career and duet career with Kenny Rogers and the late Jim Reeves, in 1932 (she died in 1991 at age 58 of injuries she had received in a car accident).
Passages:  influential Acadian musician Herb LeBlanc in 2009, at age 81 of cancer; singer/songwriter Tex Williams in 1985, at age 68 of lung cancer (his biggest hit, "Smoke!  Smoke!  Smoke!  (That Cigarette)" in 1947 is believed to be the first million-seller for Capitol Records);
Inducted:  35 year ago today, Lefty Frizzell, Marty Robbins and Roy Horton were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame; Kitty Wells and Paul Cohen were inducted into the Hall on this date in 1976.
Songwriters:  two years ago today, Rosanne Cash, Mark James (who wrote or co-wrote "Suspicious Minds" and "Always on My Mind" recorded by Elvis Presley), Even Stevens (who co-wrote several hits by Eddie Rabbitt) and Craig Wiseman (who's written or co-written #1 hits recorded by artists like Blake Shelton, Kenny Chesney and Toby Keith) were inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame.
She Did It "Swift-ly":  six years ago today, Billboard magazine named Taylor Swift their "Woman of the Year" (making her the youngest person, at age 21, to receive the award).
On the Road:  six years ago today, the CMT Hitlist Tour, featuring Deric Ruttan, Aaron Lines and Dean Brody, played at the Sanderson Centre in Brantford, Ont.
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 11 October 2017 08:10 )

Tabloid Tanya

Randy Owen
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Happy 59th birthday today to singer Tanya Tucker!  Born in Seminole, Texas, she was only 13 when she had her first hit, "Delta Dawn," in 1972.  In the early 1980's, she briefly explored a rock career before returning to country music.  Her celebrity status resulted in many tabloid stories, some of which were true, including a tempestuous relationship with the late Glen Campbell.  In her book, "Nickel Dreams," which was actually written by a friend, Tanya mentioned going on double-dates with O.J. and Nicole Brown Simpson, and dating actors Don Johnson and Desi Arnaz, Jr., who, she said, had to clear it with his therapist first.  In spite of her past wild lifestyle, Tanya has become a devoted mom and has had over 65 singles on the country music charts, including ten #1 hits.
Tanya Tucker
Tanya Tucker
Also Celebrating a Birthday Today:  singer/songwriter John Prine turns 71 (a former Chicago mailman, he was discovered by Kris Kristofferson).
Also Born on This Date:  Quebec country singer Roland Lebrun in 1919 (especially popular during World War II, he died in 1980).
Passages:  singer/guitarist Cal Smith in 2013, at age 81 (he was a member of Ernest Tubb's Texas Troubadours band before pursuing a solo career); and distiller Jack Daniels in 1911, at age 65 (needless to say, the drink that bears his name has inspired many country songs).
Wardrobe Malfunction:  29 years before the famous Janet Jackson Superbowl wardrobe malfunction, there was another one on the Country Music Association Awards.  It was 1975 and as she was being named Entertainer of the Year, Dolly Parton's dress popped open.  She borrowed a fur from an audience member to cover up!
Happy Anniversary:  singer/songwriter Victoria Banks and David Petrelli were married six years ago today!
Past Performances:  two years ago today, Brett Kissel kicked off his "Airwaves" tour at the Norfolk County Fair & Horse Show in Simcoe, Ont.  The show featured a special surprise guest...George Canyon, who did three songs with Brett.  Earlier in the day, I gave Brett an old Johnny Cash tour jacket I used to have.  And three years ago today, Gord Bamford performed at the fair.  I was the MC for both shows.
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 10 October 2017 08:16 )

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