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Don Williams, Singer of Plain-Spoken Country Songs, Dies at 78

Singing in a warm, undulating baritone, he made marital fidelity not just appealing but sexy — as exciting, in its way, as the themes of cheating and running around that defined the classic honky-tonk music of the 1950s and ’60s.

Written by Mr. Williams and Wayland Holyfield, the song was also on the album “Rough Mix,” recorded later that year by Mr. Townshend, of the Who, and his fellow British rocker Ronnie Lane, of the Faces.

His unfussy aesthetic — at once simple and, in its elemental way, profound — would go on to influence, among others, the Country singer-songwriters Alan Jackson, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Brad Paisley and Kathy Mattea.

“When I was growing up, I used to listen to Ray Price, Johnny Cash and Jim Reeves,” Mr. Williams recalled in a 1995 interview with the British magazine Country Music International.

Don Williams, left, with the actor Claude Akins at the Country Music Awards in Los Angeles in 1979.Credit Associated Press His survivors include his wife of 57 years, the former Joy Bucher; and their two sons, Gary and Timmy; and four grandchildren.

READ MORE (New York Times)

  • Country Music Hall of Famer Don Williams dead at 78USA TODAY
  • Don Williams, Legendary and Unassuming Country Singer, Dies at 78Variety
  • Don Williams dead; country singer dubbed 'the Gentle Giant' was 78Newsday
  • Don Williams, country music's Gentle Giant, has
  • Country music legend Don Williams – the 'Gentle Giant' – dead at 78The Mercury News
  • Don Williams, Laid-Back Country Legend, Is Dead At 78Texas Public Radio
  • Don Williams, country music's 'gentle giant,' dead at 78The Tennessean
  • Don Williams, Country's 'Gentle Giant,' Dead at
  • Country's "Gentle Giant" Don Williams dies at 78Reuters

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Don Williams, Singer of Plain-Spoken Country Songs, Dies at 78


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