BcMHoF - BCMHoF logo

Click on the name to read more about our British Country Music Hall of Fame members and the reason why they have been awarded the highest honour.

In 2006 a meeting was held in the Roadhouse just off junction 28 on the M1 with Rob Davis, publisher and then editor of Cross Country and now this Country music website. The purpose was to set up a form of recognition for people who had provided something above the norm on behalf of Country music in the British Isles – England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. It was agreed to call it the British Country Music Hall of Fame, a not for profit body. There were to be no boundaries as regards gender nor age other than being born in the British Isles. It would be open to performers, solo or as a group, musicians, songwriters, promoters, agents, publicists, radio/tv presenters and journalists. Open to those alive or who had passed on.
In order to make it viable we agreed to also resurrect the then defunct British Country Music Association providing annual awards for Country music. The selection for the Hall would be by unnamed persons selecting to the above criteria. This has worked admirably until 2018, by this time Rob Davis had stepped down from the BCMA board and it was agreed with the current BCMA to transfer the running of the Hall to the CCN with Jim Duncan being the curator of the Hall.
Cross Country is the only publication that publishes the full list on a regular basis. If you wish to read why, or don’t know who they are, then you can read all about them here – just click on the name below their portrait.
The British Country Music Hall of Fame is for an exclusive group of people and each year more well known advocates of Country music will be inducted at the Cross Country NAM (CCN) Awards Show.
We are always open to suggestions of who should be inducted so if you think you know of anyone then send an email to rob.cc.editor@gmail.com.

BcMHoF - 001 Keith Manifold
BcMHoF - 002 Ben Rees
BcMHoF - 003 Cal Ford
BcMHoF - 004 Campbell Baxter
BcMHoF - 005 Kenny Johnson
BcMHoF - 006 West Virginia
BcMHoF - 007 Tony Hadlow
BcMHoF - 008 Sarah Jory
BcMHoF - 009 Chris Bev Jackson
BcMHoF - 010 Tony Best
BcMHoF - 011 Sue McCarthy
BcMHoF - 012 Kelvin Henderson
BcMHoF - 013 Wally Whyton
BcMHoF - 014 John C King
BcMHoF - 015 Gerry Ford
BcMHoF - 016 Raymond Froggatt
BcMHoF - 017 Miki Griff 2008
BcMHoF - 019 Bob McKinlay
BcMHoF - 020 Ed Pearson
BcMHoF - 021 The Hillsiders
BcMHoF - 022 Albert Lee
BcMHoF - 023 Mike Storey
BcMHoF - 024 Iona Boggie
BcMHoF - 025 Charlie Landsborough
BcMHoF - 026 Jon Derek
BcMHoF - 027 Bob Harris
BcMHoF - 028 Tony Byworth
BcMHoF - 029 Frank Jennings
BcMHoF - 030 Philomena Begley
BcMHoF - 031 Johnny Larkin
BcMHoF - 032 Vic Woodhouse
BcMHoF - 033 Stu Stevens
BcMHoF - 034 Alf Roberts
BcMHoF - 035 Lloyd Coles
BcMHoF - 036 Jackie Storrar
BcMHoF - 037 Stu Page
BcMHoF - 038 Geordie Jack
BcMHoF - 039 Darren Busby
BcMHoF - 040 Lyn Jones
BcMHoF - 041 Ron Jones 2017
BcMHoF - 042 Susan McCann 2017
BcMHoF - 043 Gordon Davies 2017
BcMHoF - 044 Jim Duncan 2017
BcMHoF - 045 Lonnie Donegan
BcMHoF - 46 Aubrey Lovejoy Hall
BcMHoF - 047 Alan Cackett
BcMHoF - 048 Brian Golbey
BcMHoF - 049 Gary Perkins
BcMHoF - 050 Mervyn J Futter
BcMHoF - 051 Dave Sheriff
BcMHoF - Roger Wild bcmhof
BcMHoF - Rob Davis bcmhof
BcMHoF - Texas Gun bcmhof
BcMHoF - Malc Allan bcmhof
BcMHoF - John Stubby Stubbs bcmhof
BcMHoF - John Aston bcmhof
BcMHoF - Nicky James bcmhof
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September 2006

Keith Manifold

Keith had established himself as a leading face on the country and western scene in a career which spanned 40 years and included 18 albums. He shot to fame as the ‘yodelling milkman’ – a reference to one of his early jobs – starring in the 1974 series of TV’s Opportunity Knocks, which was won by Lena Zavaroni.He was one of the first British artists to be sponsored to complete a Nashville album featuring stars including the Jordanaires, John Gimble and Charlie McCoy.
Keith, from Buxton in Derbyshire sang his songs at clubs and festivals. Keith would be a singing compere at festivals he organised and he often encouraged others. His daughter, Louise, became part of his act and his wife, Alice, was always giving support. Keith suffered a massive heart attack when setting up for a show and died doing what he loved most.

September 2006

Ben Rees

Ben, known as the gentle giant, came from Runcorn and later lived in Warrington. He learnt his trade around the clubs in Liverpool, Manchester and north Wales and as his smooth baritone voice got better known he travelled all over the UK and to working holidays in Europe. He became the mainstay of the north Wales festival held in Llandudno each August. As a memorial to his awesome talent they have named the bar as Ben’s Bar for the annual festivals where he would sing until the small hours with all the other acts.

September 2006

Cal Ford

Cal Ford worked from Swansea to cover most of the UK from the late fifties until his early death.
He sang the songs of Johnny Cash, Hank Williams and Jimmie Rodgers and had a tremendous following, entertaining four and five nights a week with no rhythm box or backing tracks.
His son, Ian Cal Ford continues to keep his memory alive as he performs.

September 2007

Campbell Baxter

For 52 years Campbell has been touring the British Isles and is able to play for listeners at clubs, line dance venues and provide hoe-down music for the western clubs. His voice and enthusiasm continued undaunted right up to when he retired. A good guitar player he has, over the years, recorded a considerable collection of albums in his own studio. Known as a perfect country gentleman, even after the tragic death of his son he found strength to grieve privately and still entertain others.each August. As a memorial to his awesome talent they have named the bar as Ben’s Bar for the annual festivals where he would sing until the small hours with all the other acts.

September 2007

Kenny Johnson

Kenny Johnson started in the Liverpool club and pub circuit as a rock ‘n’ roll band before forming the internationally renowned Hillsiders with five others. The band played the famous Wembley festivals backing visiting American stars and in their own right. This got them a regular spot on 1970s television and they played in America performing at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville when it was still the Grand Ole Opry.
When he left the Hillies he formed one of the UK¹s premier bands, Kenny Johnson & Northwind playing all the major venues and festivals. Kenny also performed both as a solo artist and as a duo.
His knowledge of Country music also got him the Country slot on BBC Radio Merseyside which broadcasts weekly. He had been with the BBC for over 25 years.
He had released many albums and cds, his biggest hit is his song, City Lights.

September 2007

West Virigina

Arthur & Keith Thornhill, Mike Brown and Tony Peck make up West Virginia from Liverpool. As a band that has been together with very little personnel changes for nearly 30 years, they have now expanded into the holiday market.
To work this they created their own roster of artists operating as Cloud 9 Entertainments to help keep the club scene alive.
Over the years they have produced some very good albums both on vinyl and then on cd format. Now mainly working as a duo (The Thornhills) they are very much in demand on both the festival and club circuit.

September 2007

Tony Hadlow

Tony from Lytham, created an almost unique venue at Lytham St Annes, nr Blackpool catering for Country fans who liked to travel and camp for music weekends and most touring American and European artists got bookings when they come into the country.
After long negotiations he had been able to provide the north west with a very special place to be entertained.
Tony and his family were keen to encourage new bands and performers as well as the established circuit artists.
They were always ready to assist any charity show or organisation.

September 2007

Sarah Jory

Sarah is from Newark in Nottinghamshire. As one of the top five steel guitar players in the world the awesome talent of this young lady started at the age of eight when she had her first paid gig.
She was also steel guitar player in Van Morrison’s band. Sarah has recorded many times in Nashville and is on first name terms with top session talent.
She has many instrumental albums and has taken to singing with her band and is in constant festival demand both in the UK and on the Continent.
Among her many career highlights was opening for Eric Clapton at the Point in Dublin.

September 2007

Chris & Bev Jackson

From Stapleford, Nottingham, Chris & Bev were inducted as a partnership for their belief in the Country music scene. They encourage both young acts to perform and youngsters to embrace the music. They are best known for the promotion of the Americana International music festival which was held at the Newark Showground which attracted in excess of 40,000 people each year to enjoy the top American acts mixing their music on the main stage with the cream of the UK performers.
They acknowledged the input of rockabilly and the skill of singer/ songwriters while still finding space for the Country music line dancers.
Travelling to many events in the UK, USA and the Continent they were amongst the top talent spotters in the United Kingdom.

September 2007

Tony Best

From Shrewsbury, Tony was a long serving musician, club promoter and the first person to develop and present Country music holidays before creating Tony Best Leisure, one of the most successful Country holiday companies in Europe and the UK.
He had, for a long time, his own record label with a strong roster of artists.
His club in Shrewsbury was held each week and was regularly sold out, being the most popular in the Shropshire area.
Tony sadly passed away in February 2018.

September 2007

Sue McCarthy

Sue who lived in Petersfield, Hampshire was inducted into the British Country Music Hall of Fame for services to British Country music. Sue was the co-owner and editor of Southern Country magazine, set up to cover the south of the UK from Coventry down.
The encouragement to all venues to write their reports regularly was also a great spur to bands to get good reviews and get better known. This also encouraged clubs to book acts they had seen mentioned at other venues. Blowing that gentle breeze of publicity on all the many gig albums released by the bands gave them a noticeboard that had been missing from the scene.
Sue set up the UK Radio Awards in conjunction with the many local radio stations broadcasting a Country show. The UK Radio Awards take place at .Lakeside venue, Surrey every February. Sue was a very respected journalist who had a fair eye and ear when reviewing shows.

September 2008

Kelvin Hendrson

Born and raised in Bristol, Kelvin Henderson, during his promotion time, brought Guy Clark and Towns Van Zandt to Bristol.
From the early 70s Kelvin always had a band that was made up of cutting edge musicians. When most acts were aspiring to change the Bedford to a Transit he had a Plaxton 28 seater tour bus. A regular at Wembley and Peterborough festivals, he played the Albert Hall in the famed Festival of British Country concert during the 80s.
Kelvin was the producer/presenter of My Kind Of Country on BBC South & West that was syndicated over five local stations from Cornwall to Gloucester to Southampton. He dominated the airwaves. When the Association of British Country Broadcasters was formed, he was elected chairman, gaining it recognition from the CMA.
His shows always drew the aficionados of Country to them because of the variety of music he sang with his baritone voice.

September 2008

Wally Whyton

Wallace Victor Whyton was born on 29th September 1929 in London. He started work in advertising before forming the Vipers in 1956, landing the plum residency at the 2i’s Coffee shop in Soho, the equivalent to the Bluebird Café in Nashville – Cliff Richard and the Dakotas, Tommy Steele, Adam Faith and most of the emerging pop stars all played there. Sir George Martin, later of Beatles fame, was his record producer. Their big hit was Don’t You Rock Me Daddy-O – next to Lonnie Donegan they were the top skiffle band.
Wally moved into tv where he did the Small Time, Lucky Dip and Tuesday Rendezvous (the Beatles made their second tv appearance on the show, singing Love Me Do). Then followed the Five o’Clock series including Ollie and Fred’s Five o¹Clock Club. He created the puppet caricatures Ollie Beak (the Owl) and Fred Barker doing both voices. Muriel Young and Bert Weedon were on the show. Wally always sang a song while playing guitar. He later did Time For A Laugh on Granada tv.
From the 1960s until the 1990s he presented BBC Country show, gaining such an audience that it went to two-hour slots. He was rated by many as the finest Country presenter in the UK ever. During this time he recorded an album of Children’s Songs of Woody Guthrie and wrote the conservation anthem, Leave Them A Flower. He attended all the major festivals in London and Peterborough where everybody knew him. Most of the stars guesting on his show. Wally Whyton died on 22nd January 1997.

September 2008

John C King

John C King has been hailed as a British Country music legend by his peers and is well respected on the Country music scene.
As his children grew, he formed the John C King Family Band who were possibly one of the most popular bands on the circuit through the 80s and mid 90s.
John C King is now a solo artist once again with his guitar and drum machine and still has his rich Country music voice and entertains dancer and listener alike with his mix of pure Country.

September 2008

Gerry Ford

Gerry has won four Album of the Year awards and two Single of the Year awards. He has had five of his own songs nominated as Country Song of the Year, recorded 16 albums, appeared on most of the important Country festivals in the UK, including Wembley and has performed in Norway, Sweden, Holland, Germany, Ireland, Australia, USA and on the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville on 21 occasions. His 21 year broadcasting career included Radio Forth in Edinburgh, 15 years with BBC Radio Scotland, his own series on BBC Radio 2 and guest presenter on Radio 2¹s Country Club on numerous occasions.
He had his own Country music programmes on Glasgow Country 105 and Clan FM and has made many tv appearances. His accomplishments also include winning the CMA(GB) Country DJ of the Year award twice (plus two further nominations) and various Country dj awards and nominations from other organisations plus numerous Club awards as Artist/ Entertainer/Band of the Year.

September 2008

Raymond Froggatt

A chance meeting with guitar virtuoso Hartley Cain led to the formation of a rock band. He rapidly built up a large fan base around the Midlands, London and Germany.
The rock career lost momentum when the major album Rogues & Thieves did not take off but he did get on Top Of The Pops as part of his mate, Roy Wood¹s band, The Move. Gradually his music became more Country and he was invited by Mervyn Conn to be part of the famed Wembley Festivals. Mervyn Conn backed two albums recorded in Nashville with the Jordanaires and Hargus Pig Robbins. The first, Southern Fried Frog was and still is a massive seller. Froggie did and still does sing 99 percent of his own material and he has the largest following of any UK artist. His autobiography, Raymond Who?, is a great read. UK singers cover more of his songs than any other writer. When he released Don’t Let Me Cry Again, Terry Wogan played it every day for a fortnight but unfortunately a distribution blip stopped it being a major pop hit.
After fighting health problems he is still a major player on the UK Country scene having played with most of the major American artists including Tina Turner who recorded one of his songs. Raymond Froggatt is the only UK artist to have played the Albert Hall, London Palladium and the Birmingham Symphony Hall. He is one of an elite band who can have a theatre tour each year.

September 2008

Miki & Griff

Meeting in 1947, they were the perfect husband and wife duo who respected each other.
Joint presidents of fellow Hall of Fame member, Tony Best’s Lazyacre, they typified easy listening Country. Barbara, a Scot from Ayrshire, raised on the Isle of Bute adopted the name Miki.
As husband and wife they first worked with Max Bygraves as comedians and singers. Moving their singing to Country, they based their style on the Louvins¹ and the Everly Brothers¹ harmonies.
The king of skiffle, Lonnie Donegan, heard them and invited them to join his roadshow and tv shows. Lonnie got them a contract with the mighty Pye label.
Their big hits included Hold Back Tomorrow, Rocking Alone (In The Old Rocking Chair), A Little Bitty Tear and I Wanna Stay Here were during the 50s and 60s.
They backed Lonnie on his eponymous album and he played on two of their EPs. They also had a big hit in the 70s with Bob Dylan’s Blowing In The Wind. In 1964 they became the first UK Country act to play the Grand Ole Opry at the Ryman Theatre and in the 70s they toured with many visiting American Country stars. Barbara Miki Griffiths died at their Twickenham home in May 1989 and Griff on 24th September 1995.
In 2002 Castle Records released a cd of all their recordings.

September 2009

Bob McKinlay

Bob McKinlay was a Wigan based country singer from the 70s until he retired. He performed solo, duo, trio and with his band, Dixie Fried.
He was noted for his fine delivery style with ballads and in rockabilly songs. He wrote some very successful songs including his English Born Dixie Fried signature number which was a firm festival favourite.

September 2009

Ed Pearson

Ed was a veteran performer of both his own and British country writers, has appeared at most major events either solo or with his band Memphis Roots.
His natural wit and quick thinking meant he was always in demand as a compere and host at large events. He is one of the vanguard of British artists.

September 2009

The Hillsiders

One of the most important British bands ever. In the 70s they brought British Country regularly to the tv screens backing touring American stars as well as performing in their own right.
They were among the first to appear in Nashville and were regular performers on the Wembley festivals.

October 2010

Albert Lee

Albert Lee was born during World War II in Leominster, Shropshire. His pianist father taught Albert from the age of seven and by the time he had mastered the piano, rock ¹n¹ roll had arrived. He then went on to learn the guitar from the records of all the American stars from Buddy Holly, Gene Vincent, Rick Nelson and later James Burton and Chet Atkins.
Albert was session man and top sidesman, playing with Jimmy Page before his Led Zeppelin days. His first number one came as part of Chris Farlowe¹s Thunderbirds. He then discovered Country music and backed all the American touring stars including George Hamilton IV and Skeeter Davis. He was also the main guitarist in Jon Derek¹s Country Fever.
In the 1970s he was a major part of Head Hands & Feet with the elite of London musicians including Dave Peacock of Chas & Dave. Albert Lee currently tours, when in the UK, with Hogan¹s Heroes and also played in Bill Hyman¹s Rhythm Kings. Check his recent cds, Heartbreak Hotel on Sugar Hill (2003) and his compilation, The Road Runner on a 2008 Castle Records¹ release.

October 2010

Mike Storey

Mike Storey will, perhaps, be best remembered for his part in the Mike & Margaret Storey Entertainments Agency, based in Longwood, Huddersfield from where he placed Country artists in venues all over the UK. Always trying to raise the bar, he was one of the first agents dealing with the rising Country market. He fought the prejudices of bookers who only wanted to deal direct with the artist, failing to recognise the advantage of a good company with a great portfolio of stars.
He died peacefully in his sleep on November 26th 2005.

October 2011

Iona Boggie

In the years since the creation of the British Country Music Hall of Fame there have only been three ladies joining the illustrious ranks of heroes and legends, Sarah Jory, Bev Jackson and the late Sue McCarthy. The list now extends to four with the induction of Iona Boggie from the heart of Welsh speaking Wales.
Born in the small village of Nantille, her singing started in the local chapel where her crystal clear vocals and diction meant she was always taking all the solos. In her teens she started to play guitar to accompany herself on the growing number of bookings.
While training to be a primary school teacher at Bangor University she first met her soon to be husband, Scotsman Andy Boggie who was studying French. They started playing together in 1979 and married in 1980. Andy has become fluent in Welsh, both speaking and singing.  They travelled extensively all over the UK during the 1980s, clocking up over 35,000 miles some years.
Iona was a regular nominee for Best Female Country Artist and in 1987 they picked up the Best Duo award. Iona¹s natural ability to speak Welsh and sing all the Country songs in Welsh led to a very long contract with Sain Records which in turn attracted the attention of the Welsh television channel S4C where she and Andy are regular performers.
Iona is the only Welsh artist to have sung at the Grand Ole Opry, the Bluebird Café and the Station Inn in Nashville in her native tongue.
For 15 years they ran the theatre based festival at the Cymru Theatre in Llandudno, having a long association with lots of visiting American Country stars.
As part of their involvement in County music, Iona has toured and also organised Country music themed trips to the USA, Canada, most of Europe and to places as diverse as North Africa and New Zealand ensuring that the Welsh brand of Country music was spread worldwide. After 32 years on the road, Iona is still touring as the Iona & Andy Country duo. A highlight was to perform on a Welsh television show with last year’s British Country Music Hall of Fame inductee, Albert Lee. The duo’s autobiography, Llwybrau Breuddwydion (Paths Of Dreams) was published in 2007 by Gwasg Gomer.

October 2011

Charlie Landsborough

Charles Alexander Landsborough is the youngest of 11 children. Due to the bombing raids over Birkenhead, Charlie’s mother, Aggie was moved to Wrexham. Like St Patrick, another of Ireland’s legends, he was born in Wales but it was back to the family house of music for his raising. His father was a singer around the clubs and his brothers all played guitars and, being merchant seamen, all brought the latest music home.
Charlie learnt Hank Williams and Gracie Fields songs and while at grammar school Charles’ brother taught him to play and sing, he had long hair even back then.
From school he was dipping into various jobs during the day and playing guitar at night. With the Navy recruiting office closed Charlie walked around the town and joined the Army and was posted to Germany where he supplemented his wages by playing in various styles of music bands around the clubs.
Leaving the Army, he ended up as a postman in Coventry before going back to Germany for some more band work. At this time he married Thelma and then decided to settle down. After a wide range of jobs, he finally became a teacher. This was the creation point for Charlie the Country singer, first as a writer and later a singer.
1994 was the year his songs began to gain recognition and with three children to support he needed success. Ritz Records signed him as a writer for their star, Daniel O’Donnell and realised he could also sing very well in his own right. It was a career turning moment when George Hamilton IV introduced him to a packed Wembley arena as the writer of My Forever Friend.
As a writer he was always listening to people and it was a question a little girl asked her father at a bus stop that gave Charlie his signature song, the number one hit that knocked Garth Brooks off the top of the Irish chart, What Colour Is The Wind. It is a song that brings tears every time it’s sung on his twice yearly theatre tours of the UK, annual tours in Australia, Canada and America.
The pinnacle of his year is the annual concert in Liverpool playing to a 4,000 sell-out audience and backed by the full Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. After playing Birmingham’s Symphony Hall, Charlie has won most of the awards applicable to a Country star.

September 2012

Jon Derek

Jon Derek won a talent show on Radio Luxemburg at the age of 17 and formed his first band, Black Stetson, which metamorphed into Johnny & The Hayriders. He attracted the attention of the BBC with appearances on shows like Easy Beat, Country Time and eventually playing on Brian Mathews Saturday Club. This made him an obvious choice to open for Jim Reeves when he toured the UK.
In 1964 he turned professional and changed the name again to The Flintlocks. Jon joined Jamie Gunn and Jerry Hogan picking up another identity change to Jamie, Jon & Jerry, touring with Clodagh Rodgers, Carl Perkins and Hank Locklin. At this time a young Albert Lee, who is also a Hall of Fame member, joined the band. This evolved into the Jon Derek Band backing Clodagh Rodgers on her television shows.
By 1968 this had become the renowned Jon Derek & Country Fever, still with Albert Lee on lead guitar. They toured with nearly every American star who toured the UK and Europe, from Bobby Bare and Charley Pride to a massive 32 date tour with Slim Whitman.
With almost Hollywood good looks and a brilliant voice, during the 70s Jon Derek dominated the British Country scene. A regular at the now increasingly popular Wembley festivals, including the European shows, in 1977 he had a double single released on Decca. One side was a cover of the then rising star, Don Williams, ‘Til All The Rivers Run Dry which had Don’s approval when they toured together.
Jon Derek (1941- 2011).

September 2012

Bob Harris

The history of Country music on BBC national broadcasting goes back to the 1940s when all the bandleaders had their photographs up the main staircase at Bush House when it was referred to as hillbilly music. The BBC turned to their top specialist presenter, Bob Harris after his days on Radio One presenting very listenable late night music.
He carried the iconic music through onto television with the Old Grey Whistle Test where he was introducing the nation to the Country rock sounds of Poco, The Eagles, The Byrds and Pure Prairie League, highlighting their lead singer, Vince Gill, New Riders Of The Purple Sage, the legendary Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris to name a few.
Whispering Bob Harris was still carrying the nickname from the early days and he became the voice of Country music in the UK where stars and newcomers alike all accepted invitations to guest on his Thursday night show.
Voted International Broadcaster for 2004 by the CMA, he also appeared on the panel of the Americana Music Awards in 2008 and he gained a Fellowship at the University of Northampton.
Bob Harris describes Nashville as his spiritual home and, with visits to Austin and the clubs of North Carolina, a close run second.

September 2012

Tony Byworth

In 1969 Tony bought a ticket to go on the first BCMA trip to Nashville as a founding member. Wanting to help, he suggested he would try and get some media attention. It resolved in him getting a spot with Wally Whyton on Country Meets Folk which led to him becoming the UK correspondent for Billboard Magazine.
By 1970 he had quit his sales job and became a fully fledged journalist. As well as Billboard he wrote for Record Mirror, CMP, Sounds and various other publications. In 1977 he became the editor of Country Music People, a job he held until 1983 when he teamed with Richard Wootton and launched the most successful PR company in the UK dealing with Country music.
Tony Byworth’s journalistic skills were put to full use in his contributions to many books on Country music, including writing five in his own right. As PR manager for Ritz Records he was responsible for Hall of Fame member, Sarah Jory’s first recording visit to Nashville, as well as promoting Daniel O’Donnell in the USA.
Tony has also been honoured by the CMA for services to Country music. It was on one such trip last year he discovered Will Banister and started his career in the UK.
In honour of his 70th birthday, the Texas Flag was flown over the State Capitol building in Austin for his work in promoting Texas music.
With many American awards to his credit, it’s been many years since the journalistic awards of the 70s to being inducted into the British Country Music Hall of Fame in 2012.

November 2013

Frank Jennings

One of the very successful band leaders from the 1970s, Frank was born in London at the end of World War II, his parents came from Ireland and encouraged him in music. It was a short step from traditional Irish music sung at home and in the clubs to Country music.
He achieved national recognition as a winner of Opportunity Knocks in the 70s with his band, Syndicate. Frank Jennings Syndicate were one of the first UK bands to get a major label deal and he released a series of successful singles on EMI, Columbia and One Up labels. Titles like A Good Love Is Like A Good Song in 76, his Christmas single, Silent Night in 77, while 78 saw Me And My Guitar, Everybody Needs A Rainbow and the One Up album, Ponderosa Country (with them all posing on a large steam roller on the cover).
He released, Yesterday Today And Tomorrow which realised four top 10 hits on the Hotdisc top 40 and UK Country Radio top 10 chart. Two hit the top spot, Matamoros and Born And Raised In Black And White.
During his long career he has recorded at Abbey Road for EMI and also in Nashville, where he appeared on the Grand Ole Opry, he has also appeared at the London Palladium.
He toured in the UK opening for major artists, including Don Williams and the legendary, Tammy Wynette. 
Frank Jennings joined the British Country Music Hall of Fame in 2013.

November 2013

Philomena Begley

Philomena Begley was born in Pomeroy in County Tyrone, Ulsteron October 20th 1942. Her first job on leaving school was in a shirt factory before answering a dare from her mates on a night to sing with a ceilidh band led to getting the offer to join them. After a change of name for the band to Country Flavour her 50 year musical career was underway.
After her previous three records, Philomena was in the studio again in 1970 to record Here Today Gone Tomorrow which peaked at number seven on the Irish chart. In 1974 she left Country Flavour and formed The Rambling Men and 1975 saw the start of the duet period with Ray Lynham, their song, My Elusive Dreams getting a mention for them in the Pogues’ hit, A Pair Of Brown Eyes.
The same year Philomena covered Blanket On The Ground which peaked at number five, ahead of Billie Jo Spears in Ireland. They later became very close friends and toured together.
Her first tour in the USA was in 1977 and the following year she joined Porter Wagoner on the Grand Ole Opry.
Her music has taken her to be guest on the St Patrick’s Day parade in New York City and singing in the Carnegie Hall with appearances at the Wembley, Peterborough and other major festivals.
With over 20 albums in her back catalogue, another best seller was How I Love To Sing The Old Songs on H&H Music. The opening track, I Ain’t Over The Hill says it all for this Queen of Irish Country. 

November 2013

Johnny Larkin

Johnny Larkin, performer, agent, promoter, charity fundraiser is the oldest induc