Jan’s Fan Page
Sharing and Caring Annual Boat Ride for
On Friday, September 5, 2008, Jan had the pleasure of
participating in the Sharing and Caring Annual Boat Ride for
Hospitalized Veterans held onboard the Gateway Clipper in
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Jan was invited to participate in the
event by musicians Perry Pinto and Dale Vincent, and she had a
wonderful time meeting with and performing for the Veterans group.
Dale and his wife Randy graciously hosted Jan's stay for the weekend
and provided her with a tour of several local landmarks.
Dale and his wife Randy are shown in a photo with Jan at the
Fallingwater home designed by architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Bass
player Perry Pinto is also shown with Jan at the magnificent home
which was built, partly over a waterfall, in the 1930's. In addition
to the Veterans group and to Dale, Randy, and Perry, Jan also
extends her thanks to Karen Jones from the North Hills School
District who is shown in a photo with Jan aboard the Gateway
Recording “Those Were The Days”
At the invitation of Dolly Parton and as part of the ‘Opry
Gang’, Jan had the pleasure of recording the fun song “Those
Were The Days”. The recording session was held on July 1, 2005,
at the The Tracking Room located at 2 Music Circle East in
Nashville. The song is the title track on Dolly’s CD which was
released on October 11, 2005. Some of you may remember that Mary
Hopkin had a big hit and gold record with “Those Were The Days”
in 1968. The melody of the song is actually based on the
traditional Russian folk song “Dear For Me”.
The photo below was taken at Dolly’s recording session. In the
photo are (top row, left to right) Porter Wagoner, engineer Patrick
Murphy, Billy Walker, Mel McDaniel, Jimmy C. Newman, Jack Greene,
George Hamilton IV, (bottom row, left to right) session leader Kent
Wells, George Jones, Pam Tillis, Jeannie Seely, Dolly Parton, Brenda
Lee, and Jan Howard. Dolly provided each artist with a signed copy
of the photo and CD.
Scenes From 2004 “Jan Howard Day” In West
Around The World With Jan
Jan’s music has been included frequently on the playlists
of FM radio station 103.8 BREST in France. (Please
check out www.frequencemutine.fr.st).
Thanks to DJ Alain Demers at the radio station.
Jan’s boxed set containing 81 recordings was reviewed (with
four stars) in the November 2003 issue of Country Music People
magazine which is published in London, England.
(Please check out www.countrymusicpeople.com.)
Thanks to Al Moir for the review and to Ivan Martin for sending
a copy of the magazine. Al described the boxed set as “a
must-have item for all Jan Howard fans.”
Shown to the right is a poster promoting Jan’s appearance
in Norway when she performed there in January
and February of 2003 with Jack Greene and Jeannie Seely. Jan has
traveled overseas on numerous tours throughout her career Thanks
to all the fans who have attended Jan’s shows in foreign
countries, as well as right here in the USA.
Jan recently received a very complimentary letter from Sheldon
Olson, a fan who lives in Ontario, Canada. Sheldon
recently read Jan’s autobiography Sunshine and Shadow and
highly praised Jan for her book. He also recalled how he and his
sister Kelly used to sing ”Dis-Satisfied” to an eight-track
tape copy of Jan and Bill’s duet hit. He even found the
eight-track tape and kindly sent it to Jan who didn’t have
her own copy. Thanks Sheldon.
Jan at Dollywood
Jan performed for several weeks at Dollywood in 2003. Shown below
are a couple photos from Randy Parton's 'Country State of Mind'
show during which Jan sang a fun duet of "Dis-Satisfied"
with Jimmy Bryant. The photos were taken by Ann Allen (shown with
Jan) who lives in nearby Sevierville. Ann attended many of Jan's
Dollywood shows throughout the season and has been a longtime
fan and friend.
A Salute to Goldie Hill Smith
At the 5th Annual Golden Voice Awards held on June 5, 2003, during
Fan Fair, Jan Howard received the Female Vocalist Golden Voice
Although she was extremely honored to be named Female Vocalist,
Jan felt compelled to call Goldie Hill Smith to the stage and
present the award to her instead. “She’s one of my
favorite people and a very close friend,” noted Jan, “and
I think she deserves some much overdue recognition.”
Goldie Hill got her start on the Louisiana Hayride in 1953 as
part of her older brother Tommy’s band. Billed as “The
Golden Hillbilly,” she scored a huge hit on Decca with her
single, “I Let The Stars Get In My Eyes” (the answer
song to “Don’t Let The Stars Get In Your Eyes”
by Slim Willet and by Skeets McDonald). Goldie’s record
stayed at No. 1 for three weeks on the Billboard country charts.
Goldie later scored hit duets with Justin Tubb (including the
Top 5 “Looking Back To See) and with Red Sovine (including
“Yankee, Go Home” – which was also recorded
by Wynn Steward and Jan Howard).
In 1957 Goldie married country singer Carl Smith. She made a
comeback in the late 1960s as Goldie Hill Smith and recorded two
albums for Epic. Following Carl’s retirement from music
in the late 1970s, he and Goldie stayed on their horse farm outside
Franklin, Tennessee and the two began to show horses professionally
during the course of the decade. Goldie and Carl had three children
together – Carl Jr., Larry, and Lori.
Although her career was far too short in the opinion of many
fans, Goldie Hill Smith nevertheless etched an indelible mark
in country music history and is remembered by Jan and countless
others as a great singer – as well as a beautiful and warm
independent feature film Changing Hearts - in which Jan Howard
appears as Mrs. Jenkins of the Women's Baptist League - is now
available on Video and DVD.
Proceeds from the movie will help non-profit organizations dedicated
to cancer research, education, and support.
Current Trivia Questions:
Question: In the 2003 book titled Finding Her Voice: Women
In Country Music by Mary A. Bufwack and Robert K. Oermann, a listing
is provided of female artists with the most Top 10 records. Jan Howard
is included on the list with a No. 25 ranking, tied with Lee Ann Womack,
Suzy Bogguss, Jody Miller, and Jeannie C. Riley. What is the number
of Top 10 records that all of these ladies share?
Answer: Jan Howard, Lee Ann Womack, Suzy Bogguss,
Jody Miller, and Jeannie C. Riley have each accumulated six Top 10 records
on the Billboard country singles charts.
Question: In the same book, Jan
is included among a list of female country performers who made the national
charts past the age of forty. How old was Jan Howard when her last record
Answer: Jan was 48 years old when her last charted
single, “To Love A Rolling Stone”, debuted on the Billboard
Previous Trivia Questions and Answers:
Question: Jan was looking through some old photos and found this one
taken with her good friend Jeannie Seely. The photo was actually part
of a Christmas card that was sent by Jeannie to Jan. Can you identify
the location where the photo was taken, as well as the year?
Answer: The photo was taken in 1987 at the Bull Pen
Lounge, part of the famous Stock-Yard Restaurant that is still located
on Second Avenue in Nashville. (To those who have been there, the stone
wall in the photo is a good clue to the location.) The unique building
was the former home of a bank, a barbershop, a saloon, livestock trading
companies, and many other interesting endeavors.
Question: On January 13, 1971, Jan Howard was a special guest
on “The Johnny Cash Show”. What Canadian-born artist was
also a guest on that same show?
Answer: Gordon Lightfoot, born in Orilla, Ontario, Canada, was a
guest on the same Johnny Cash TV show. Although known mainly as a folk-pop
singer, songwriter, and guitarist, Gordon placed several songs on the
Billboard country charts from 1974-86, including the Top 15 hit "Sundown",
a gold single that went to No. 1 on the pop charts.
Question: Can you identify the location where this photo was
taken of Jan sometime in 2003?
Answer: The photo was taken on May 4, 2003, during a red carpet
ceremony at the entrance to the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.
The evening event was a Medallion Ceremony to honor the 2002 Hall of
Fame inductees, Bill Carlisle and Porter Wagoner. The building in the
background was the clue – it is the Hilton Hotel located across
from the Hall of Fame in downtown Nashville.
Question: With what vocal group did Jan record a 1961 Capitol
45 rpm record containing the songs “Looking Back” and “See
One Broken Heart”?
Answer: Jan recorded that record – along with many others
– with The Jordannaires, members of the Country Music Hall of
Question: Many country artists – including Patsy Cline,
Hank Snow, Floyd Cramer, Earl Scruggs, and Jan Howard – have lived
in the Nashville suburb of Madison. What street address in Madison was
the former home of Jan Howard?
Answer: As noted in her autobiography, Jan’s former address
was 1017 South Graycroft, just a couple doors down from George and Anna
Following are questions that Jan has received:
I saw a “Jan Howard, Realtor” business
card for sale on e-bay. Was that you on the card?
Yes, that was me. In the late 70's I obtained my real estate license.
Since I had to have a broker and Corky knew some people at Lakeside
Realtors in Hendersonville, that's where the license was placed. I actually
sold a few houses (including Jimmy Capp's home in Mt. Juliet) but it
didn't take me long to realize that selling homes was not for me –
especially when people would bring me sacks of tapes to listen to. My
license is in retirement and will stay there, but I still pay my dues.
As Tammy said when asked why she kept her cosmetology dues paid..."you
never know when this job will be end". A funny thing though is
that I was so determined to pass that really hard test, I took a real
estate course for three months. Then the week before the exam I studied
five hours a night for seven nights then took a weekend crash course.
The test was supposed to last about two hours with no break. Well, I
was in there for four hours. Since most everyone had gone by then, I
felt really stupid. Later I found out I had taken the Broker's test
as well as the Affiliate Broker's. Then I got called to appear before
the Grand Jury because I had received the fourth highest score ever.
Do you have a favorite memory of June Carter Cash as either
an entertainer or a person?
My favorite memories of June Carter Cash are as a kind, caring person…a
fun-loving individual who always had a smile and a helping hand. As
an entertainer she was unbeatable. She was definitely loved by audiences
all over the world.
One of my favorite recordings is "Where No One Stands
Alone". How did you choose that song to record?
The first time I heard “Where No One Stands Alone”,
I knew that song was special. It was a Don Gibson recording. It was
a favorite of all three of my sons, and if they asked me to sing a song
– whether it was on stage or at home – it was always “Where
No One Stands Alone”. The lyrics have helped me through many bad
times in my life. When I was deciding on songs for the “For God
And Country” album, that song was a MUST.
Where did you make your first demo recording?
Actually the demo for “Mommy For A Day” was made in
the bathroom of our little apartment in Gardena, CA. The echo was better
there. Harlan stood with one foot propped on the commode, played his
three chords on the guitar, and I stood in the shower. We had a Wolensack
tape recorder. The demo was pretty bad, but it got the job done. Kitty
Wells recorded the song and the rest is history.
During what years did you perform on Bill Anderson’s
I think it was 1966 to 1973. When I first began the show it was
done in Charlotte, NC. After that we filmed in Windsor, Ontario for
six months. The last location was at WSIX in Nashville.
While taking a Grayline tour in Nashville and going by the
National Cemetery, the bus driver said he thought Jan Howard’s
son was the last soldier buried there. Is that correct?
Yes, that's what I was told. It was meant to be. When Jimmy was
home on leave before going to Vietnam we were in his car and stopped
for a red light at the corner of the cemetery. He looked over at a big
tree standing there and said “that's got to be the most peaceful
spot on earth”. He's buried about twenty feet from that tree.
I read that you’ve received several awards associated
with your Veterans efforts including the “Distinguished Patriot
Medal”. Were you involved with the Veterans Memorial?
I’ve received awards from many different veterans organizations,
each of which I'm honored. Most are associated with Vietnam Veterans.
I was contacted when the idea of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington
first began. I and many military figures did press conferences for Time,
Newsweek, The Washington Post, New York Times, and other media for support
of the idea. Letters about the Memorial were sent out on my personal
stationary asking for donations. I also did many radiothons all over
the country. After many meetings the design was chosen. I don't want
this to sound as if I was the only one involved....there were many who
gave their time, support and money to achieve the end result...an awesome
sight. Over fifty-eight thousand names are on the Wall, each of whom
paid the ultimate price for freedom.
When was the “Jan Howard Expressway” dedicated
in West Plains?
The Jan Howard Expressway was dedicated in September of 1971. Bill
Anderson and I did a complete show that night at the fairgrounds...it
was a kind of "This is your life...JAN HOWARD". Many of my
family members were there. And a man in the audience taped the whole
show and sent it to me. I even have congratulation cassettes from people
who couldn't be there including Tex Ritter.
Do you remember the first time you sang in front of a live
I had never sung in front of a live audience before Wynn Stewart
and I recorded “Yankee Go Home”. After that when Harlan
and I went to see Wynn perform he'd always ask if I'd sing with him.
I had such horrible stage fright it got to where about the time I knew
he was going to ask me to sing, I'd make some excuse to leave. Then
when I recorded “Pick Me Up On Your Way Down” and it began
to get some local air play It happened more often. I was afraid to go
anywhere. Even after I recorded “The One You Slip Around With”.
Then one night while visiting Town Hall party where many of our friends
were performing I heard my name called...it was Joe Maphis introducing
me. Someone pushed me toward the stage but I swear I don't remember
The first REAL audience was Lubbock, TX. In California I was working
as a secretary earning $85.00 a week before taxes. One day someone called
and asked me do a three day tour with Wynn in Texas and Colorado Springs.
When they said they'd pay me $250.00 a day I said yes. But that first
night in Lubbock Johnny Horton literally pushed me on stage. Seems like
I was pushed a lot...but I was heading for the door. All I could think
was" what am I doing here?" Archie Campbell was also on the
show. When he was on I stood in the back of the auditorium and listened
to him do “Trouble In The Amen Corner”...you could hear
a pin drop. I was fascinated. The next night was Amarillo then Colorado
Springs. Later two more shows were added...Kansas City, KS and Tulsa,
OK. That was all in 1959. Upon returning to California I did another
show with Buck Owens and Wynn...the disk jockey who was the MC introduced
me as Mrs. Harlan Howard. He knew Harlan's name because by that time
Ray Price had recorded “Heartaches By The Number” and Harlan
was the writer.
Is that you singing “Mama sang tenor”
on Johnny Cash’s No. 1 hit “Daddy Sang Bass”?
Yes. Carl Perkins wrote the song. He called one night at ten o'clock
and asked if I'd come to the studio where Johnny Cash was recording
and sing one line. Said he couldn't hear anyone but me doing it. Coming
from Carl that was a great compliment. I rushed right over. The Statler
Brothers were there and we all sang together...but that one line was
mine alone. I understand there have been many contests on radio stations
as to who sang that line....they've guessed everyone BUT me.
When you recorded “Evil On Your Mind”, did you
think it would be as big of a hit record as it was? Congratulations
on it being included in the new book as one of the 500 greatest country
singles of all time. Wasn’t it also nominated for a Grammy Award?
I had a good feeling about the song when I first heard it. And after
we made the demonstration record I took it immediately to Owen Bradley
(my producer) and said "this is a hit"....he agreed. It was
nominated for a Grammy in 1966.
I heard Jeannie Seely mention something on the Opry about the
two of you being “centerfolds”. Was she just kidding?
Actually it’s true….our pictures and ads are in the
center of the 2003 Ernest Tubb Record Shop Catalog. We said, "finally....we
made the centerfold!”
If you had the opportunity to choose any artist(s) to become
the newest member(s) of the Grand Ole Opry, who would you pick?
Now you've put me on the spot. But since my opinion wouldn't help
or hurt anyone to be made a member of the Opry, I'll leave that to the
"powers that be" and keep my fingers crossed.
Do you watch any of the shows like Star Search, American Idol,
or Nashville Star? What advice would you give to anyone trying to get
I have never watched any of the shows you mentioned. And the business
is so different from when I started it's hard to give advice. But I'd
say make sure it's what you really want to do, have faith in yourself
and your ability, work to be the best that you can be and don't take
"no" for an answer. Sing every chance you get....you never
know when the right person will be listening.
Do you have a favorite golf course?
Because of golf tournaments, I've had the opportunity to play on
some really great courses. It's hard to choose just one. I belong to
Springhouse (the Opryland Course) and really like Cole Park Golf Course
on Fort Campbell, KY. But frankly, and I've said this before, I'm not
that good a golfer. My handicap is two; my clubs and golf. But I love
the game and keep trying!
I had the pleasure of seeing you perform on the Opry with Jeannie
Seely and Rita Coolidge. The three of you have written some great songs
and were previously married to three of country music’s most famous
songwriters – Harlan Howard, Hank Cochran, and Kris Kristofferson.
Have you ever thought about doing a movie or play together? It would
be a great idea.
No, we haven't. But, I agree it would be one heck of a movie. Something
to think about.
I enjoy the new recipe page on your web site. What’s
your very favorite dessert?
My favorite dessert???? Let's see….coconut meringue pie, blackberry
cobbler, custard pie....the list is way too long. I try not to eat any
very often….once past the lips forever on the hips....or waist.
Do you have any favorite songs that you haven't recorded but would
like to in the future?
I sure do. "Take Me As I Am" has always been a favorite.
"Somebody's Always Saying Goodbye" and "Think I'll Go
Somewhere And Cry Myself To Sleep" also come to mind. These are
just three songs of many.
What are some of your favorite restaurants in the Nashville
Mario's is a great Italian restaurant, as is Valentino's. Nick and
Rudy's is also very good. Arnold's is a "meat and three" but
you'll always get great home cookin'. I love the Belle Meade Buffet
vegetables and salads. And I have to add Sperry's
among my top three choices.
We recently heard Tanya Tucker thank you during an
interview for allowing her to sing on the last Opry show at the Ryman
in 1974. What's the story behind that?
Tanya was about thirteen or fourteen I believe, and Delta Dawn was
getting a lot of airplay. She and her Dad were backstage at the Ryman.
I asked if she was going to sing and when she said they didn't have
room for her, I asked the manager if I could give her one of my spots.
He said if it was okay with me it was okay with him. As I expected,
the audience loved her. I'm honored that she remembers.
Do you have a most embarrassing moment on stage that
is now funny to look back on?
There have been several
most of which are SO embarrassing they
don't need repeating. It's a case of "I guess you had to be there
What is your reaction to recently being voted among
the Top 15 Most Influential Women in Country Music [by a Internet Poll
conducted by www.takinthecountryback.com]?
I didn't know I was. But if so, that's a great compliment and I'm
Do you have any favorites among the current country
Several. But, the ones I like the most are the ones with their own
style and sound
the ones I can identify the minute I hear their
voice. One such new young artist is Josh Turner. I may adopt him.
What is your favorite vacation spot?
For the past few years I've gone with Bobby and Jeannie Bare to Sanibel
Island, Florida, for a week or so in January or February. I love it
there. But, if possible, I try to make every trip a mini-vacation no
matter where it is. I believe in making the most of every day...the
place doesn't matter.
When did you first start playing golf and who got you
interested in the game?
I first began seriously learning to play golf about 1987. I had
spent the previous year and a half writing my book and didn't have time
for anything else. My son, Jimmy, was an avid (and very good) golfer...he
had played since he was thirteen. One day I went with him to the course
and tried to hit a ball now and then until he said "Mom, I have
a great idea...why don't you go take a lesson and let me play golf".
I knew I wasn't ready. But the first time I EVER hit(?) a ball was when
we were taping The Bill Anderson Show from Hounds Ear, N.C. Bill and
I decided to tackle the course. I purchased a box of twelve brand new
balls. On the last hole the green was on the other side of a small lake
into which I hit all twelve balls. That was the last of golf for several
years. But, once I began to play I loved it and now spend every minute
possible playing. Even though it's frustrating when I goof up, I love
Do you have a favorite memory or story regarding Patsy
I was a Patsy Cline fan long before we ever met. We met in the women's
dressing room ( which was the restroom) at the Ryman when I first came
to Nashville and began appearing on the Opry. Because I was so shy (believe
it or not) I wouldn't introduce myself. She thought I was conceited
and told me so in no uncertain words. My shyness left and I fired back
at her. She laughed as only Patsy could and said "You're alright,
honey. We're gonna be good friends" - and from then on we were.
I loved her for the person she was; good hearted and loyal. She loved
her family, she loved to laugh and she loved to sing. I'm so glad her
music is timeless.
In your book you talk about living in many different
places. How many times would you estimate you moved before finally settling
Heaven only knows. I went to a small school for a short time and
can't count that high.
Have you ever appeared in any theater productions or
I studied acting for two years and would really like to pursue that
part of the business. I've auditioned several times and have come close,
but close only counts in hand grenades and horseshoes. But the only
time I've ever done anything of that sort was recently when Jeannie
Seely, Rita Coolidge and I were cast in a movie now called "Changing
Hearts" staring Faye Dunaway, Tom Skerritt, Lauren Holly, Ian Somerhalder
and Janet Carroll. The last I heard it was to be released soon on the
big screen, Lifetime Network, and DVD. It was fun, interesting and hard
work, but I'd do it again in a New York minute. I learned a lot and
have a new respect for the people "behind the scenes". I've
thought about doing local theater and I may yet....who knows???