Hit country songwriter Red Lane visits the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in 2010 for an in-depth, one-on-one interview, part of the Museum's Poets & Prophets series featuring legendary songwriters.
Lane launched his songwriting career in the mid-1960s, with stars including Faron Young, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, Eddy Arnold, and Conway Twitty ultimately recording his songs. Among the Red Lane compositions that became hits: Merle Haggard’s “My Own Kind of Hat,” Waylon Jennings’s “Walk On Out of My Mind,” Willie Nelson’s “Blackjack County Chain,” George Strait’s “Tell Me Something Bad about Tulsa,” Conway Twitty’s “Darling, You Know I Wouldn’t Lie,” and Tammy Wynette’s “‘Til I Get It Right.”
Red Lane's musical beginnings were primarily as a guitarist, playing in bands in Phoenix (where he met another up-and-coming artist, Waylon Jennings), in Indiana, and later, in Nashville. But Willie Nelson's early recordings helped inspire a shift from guitarist to songwriter-guitarist, Lane explains during the two-hour program, and Nelson's music continued to influence Lane's songwriting through the decades.
When Red Lane moved to Nashville in 1964, he recalls, his music career picked up quickly: Faron Young had a #11 hit with their co-written song “My Friend on the Right”; country star Justin Tubb brought Lane to perform on the Grand Ole Opry; and soon after, Lane began a longstanding collaboration with future Country Music Hall of Fame member Dottie West, who recorded a long list of Lane compositions, including “Clinging to My Baby’s Hand,” “It’s Dawned on Me You’re Gone,” “Come See Me and Come Lonely,” and “Country Girl.”
Red Lane briefly explored a solo career—signing to RCA and scoring a Top 40 hit with “The World Needs a Melody”—but, he explains, the life of a songwriter ultimately held more appeal.
"I dedicated my whole life to writing," Lane says.
Alongside discussion of his songs and his music career, the Red Lane Poets & Prophets interview also touches on other parts of his colorful story—including Lane’s home, a converted 1958 DC-8 passenger jetliner, and a local charitable effort he contributed to in the 1970s, assisting the Nashville police department with a camp for at-risk youth.
The program also includes family photos and rare audio and video clips from the Museum’s Frist Library and Archive.
Find out more about the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum's public programs: https://countrymusichalloffame.org/plan-your-visit/exhibits-activities/public-programs/
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