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Music Row Report All Rights Reserved
has an 8:30 a.m. March 22, 2022 court date following Barker's arrest on a charge of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon on SARA EVANS. Barker's January 15, 2022 arrest on the felony charge was likely precipitated by Evans' August, 2021 divorce filing.
Randy wrote, or otherwise had a hand in the writing of, every song on
the collection. From the poignant to the wryly humorous to the
philosophical, Huston draws his listeners into a shared "cowboy way" experience, enlisting co-writers KRISTIN HARRIS, DUKE SUNDT and JIM JONES for good measure.
I "met" RALPH EMERY when, as a suburban Minneapolis teenager listening through the static
to a certain Nashville clear-channel radio station, I called into
Ralph's late-night radio show, chatting with him "live" on the air.
I got to know Emery while hanging out at WSM Radio and TV during
the early '70s. Given my Radio-TV degree, at a time when college
graduates were scarce among WSM hires, I hoped to land a daytime
air shift on the former or an entertainment reporter position with
the latter's news division.
At the time women weren't even considered for such
positions, though Ralph put me to work during Opry Star Spotlight, answering the request line on those nights when JOHN RIGGS (a/k/a "Ralph Emery's John") wasn't available.
I have many fond memories of stayin' up with Ralph and having a "front
row seat" when country-music's A-listers came to Knob Road to plug
their latest recordings.
I remember one occasion during those years when Ralph agreed to an
interview. It would be on Emery's clock, which meant after Ralph
signed off from his overnight radio shift and before he signed on to
the early-morning WSM-TV show bearing his name.
One of my (less than) brilliant questions concerned what Ralph did between those (ungodly) hours.
Emery's response? "I wouldn't ask you that question."
Most recently, Ralph graciously contributed a blurb for a book for which I served as TOMMY CASH's ghostwriter, he (along with Tom and Tommy) was a reference for my 2021 Country Radio Hall of Fame nomination and, of course, Ralph and I were in touch in the wake of Tom Hall's death.
Lind is alleged to have called the FBI's National Threat Center,
boasting of his threat to the Center's operator, indicating Lind's
intention was based on the fact that "I just sold my soul to Luke
Wilcoxon notes "Based on the content of the
conversation... it appears that if Lind was contacted [sic] by someone
claiming to be Luke Bryan" or, "if Lind felt that he (Lind) heard
a voice which he interpreted as Luke Bryan, he would act on those
The additional explanation, rationalization or excuse for such deviant behavior may stem from a September 17, 2021 Luke Bryan Miller Family Farm concert in Baltimore, Ohio where, after initially grinning from ear-to-ear when inexplicable chants of "F (spelled out) Joe Biden"
rang out, Bryan told the chanters "Well, that's not nice," plucking his
guitar to the beat of the chants before adding "Oh, I love you all."
reports that a seven-bedroom, 13,831 square-foot home- complete
with a commercial elevator, vault room, sauna and putting green - on
land once owned by EDDY ARNOLD
closed in December 2021 for $10.3 million! (The price tag represents
the sale of the home alone- not the lot on which is sits, one of several lots
overseen by Arnold's grandson/record label owner/ real estate developer
Now that I
have the official results, I am sadly (with a mixture of frustration,
anger and disbelief, though, honestly, not shock) the first journalist
confirm that TOM T. HALL's grisly cause of death was a
self-inflicted shotgun wound to the head (via the mouth).
Suicide runs in families, including Hall's, but there were other
reasons for Tom's decision. One of the biggest, in my opinion,
was Hall's beginning to lose his mobility. (Tom died less
than three months after his 85th birthday. I wonder if Hall was
aware that, according to the most recently available data- compiled in
2017- from the Society of Actuaries and the Social Security Administration, the average life expectancy for a person who is alive at age 85 is 92 years of age.)
Beyond that, if you're looking for reasons, there were any number of them stemming from Tom's
acknowledged history of mental illness. Hall's depression, in
turn, impacted the way Tom lived his life. He chose to surround himself with a host of
apparently saw him as a meal ticket affording them "bragging rights"
and, in their estimation, nothing more.
There were others in his life to whom Tom chose not to listen
(including approximately a handful of
well-meaning, caring people, some of whom should have put themselves
first long before they did) that had me relying on my intuition (my
having known Tom, one of my mentors- though he preferred to introduce
me to others as his "friend"- all of my adult life and the majority of
before I received the facts. (Efforts to do what Hall's enablers
did best- hide- in this case, what turned out to be the first hints of
Tom's slowly-developing mild cognitive impairment- began during the 2015
LOUISE SCRUGGS Memorial Forum,
before a diagnosis could be confirmed. Again, given Hall's peculiarly unexplained
absence, and my presence, at the event that featured a video of an interview Tom granted for the occasion, replete with jump cuts, I was on to the staging secrecy, if only that, and so noted publicly at the time.)
Then there are those uninvestigated (for what seems like obvious reasons) thefts from the Country Music Hall of FameLibrary's Tom T. Hall vertical file...
Here is a G-rated summary of nine (9) pages of otherwise lurid,
graphic details (and methodology sadly familiar to Tom and what remains of his family),
that Report readers would expect from a thorough investigation, and to
which I am
privy: The 911 call was placed at 11:15
a.m. on August 20, 2021 and paramedics arrived 18 minutes later.
The toxicology report suggests that at, at the time of his death, at least one (metabolizing) drug
designed to aid in alcohol withdrawal and anxiety management was in
Tom's system. (I earned Hall's ire nearly a half-century ago when,
naive and otherwise barely out of my teens, I wrote him an ill-advised, but
well-meaning and heartfelt letter, beginning "It's not my place to tell
you this but, since those whose place it is will not do so, you are an
As if I was giving Tom information he didn't already know and he would abstain forevermore as a result. Right?
Hey, no one knew what an "intervention" was in those days, let alone how to plan one. And I'd never heard of Al-Anon
nor suspected a Vitamin B-12 deficiency, not to mention the
relationship between chronic anxiety and the buildup of amyloid plaques.
As I noted, apparently erring, in a Legacy.com
remembrance (ever mindful of posting guidelines, with which, given the
delay in publication of the post, I thought I had unintentionally violated, I posted
another memory), I thought Tom had succeeded in recovery. It never
occurred to me that he may have lapsed decades later, and, even though
I knew Hall had been on hunting trips in the distant past, that he
owned a gun.
Those who did know about such a lethal combination should have sounded an alarm.
That said, as those who knew him best would expect, Tom left no note.
I never believed that the 2012 incident (not to mention earlier, suppressed incidents at his former Brentwood, Tennessee office) occurred as it was reported and
subsequently adjudicated, given Hall's organization's prior
history with the Williamson County Sheriff's Office. (I was very public about my feelings in my
reporting of the Fox Hollow shooting at the time. Had that
incident, and prior incidents, been responsibly handled, sans enabling,
Tom would have been forced to make better decisions.)
As a 2021 graduate of The Davidson County Sheriff's Office's Citizens Academy,
my skepticism has been reinforced by the WCSO's evasion and lack of
responsiveness in its handling of Tom Hall's death, beginning with an
unwillingness/inability to explain why, given the findings I have
reported (which it does not dispute) as it informed me, most recently on November 24,
2021, the investigation remains "open."
It must be noted that there is a possibility that Hall was aware of an
subsequently botched) investigation (having nothing to do with the WCSO) that was underway in the months
prior to his death, the details of which will likely surface during an
upcoming election cycle, perhaps as opposition research. If that
is the case, voices more
powerful than my own will establish that there are bungling enablers
with (if only figuratively) blood on their hands.