Music News

Opry star Jan Howard passes away at 91

Joel Dennis

Joel DennisGrand Ole Opry star Jan Howard passed away Saturday, at the age of 91. 

The Missouri native was twice nominated for a Grammy, for “Evil on Your Mind” in 1966 and “My Son” in 1968, the latter a tribute to the child she lost in Vietnam. While “Evil” became her biggest hit, she also scored top twenty singles with “The One You Slip Around With,” “Bad Seed,” and “Count Your Blessings, Woman.”

Formerly married to legendary songwriter Harlan Howard, Jan sang the demos for classics like “I Fall to Pieces,” becoming close friends with icons like Patsy Cline and Dottie West along the way. She also had a long association with Johnny Cash and the Carter Family. In fact, it’s Jan who utters the “Mama sang tenor” line on Cash’s “Daddy Sang Bass” from 1969.

Howard penned her autobiography, Sunshine and Shadow, in 1987, while simultaneously becoming revered as one of the Grand Ladies of the Grand Ole Opry. 

Graveside services for the 49-year member of the Opry will be private, with a public memorial to be held later.

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