Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Don Gibson's Grave - Shelby, N.C.

A few days ago Sue and I took a drive to Shelby, N.C. to visit the grave of one North Carolina’s premier compose/singer/songwriters, Don Gibson. You may not know the name offhand if you are not a country music fan, but you know his songs. Elvis did rather well with “I Can’t Stop Loving You” and I’m sure that made Mr. Gibson very happy. And his list of songs goes on and on, touching 2 decades, and influencing the direction of country music, keeping it grounded to its roots.

I took one of my guitars with me to play and did a credible version of 2 of his songs which are favorites of mine, “Sea of Heartaches” which was written by Paul Hampton and Hal David and first recorded by Mr. Gibson in 1961.  I also did a bit of “I Can’t Stop Loving You”; the lyrics are posted in brass at the base of the other side. It was fairly easy to figure out, and I hope I did it justice!

The actual monument, which is made of green Jade from Asia, is about 15 foot tall and contains everything you want to know about his music and career. Apparently, he was also a Mason.

On the way out we spied this unusual looking stone just a few rows over from Mr. Gibson’s grave. It sports a fiddle and the Atlanta Georgia Music Hall of Fame logo, so I had to take a look at the other side to see what was what.

This is the obverse side of the marker which lists her name and dates of birth. Of course now I have to find her music on You Tube and be thankful to Don Gibson for having inadvertently introduced me to another great artist in the chain that makes music the veritable river that it is. For more about Mr. Gibson’s life go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don_Gibson

Hopefully, the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame, located in Kannapolis, will soon have a guitar form the Gibson family to grace their wonderful collection of memorabilia of native North Carolina’s most beloved musical artists. Although he was inducted into the Hall several years ago, his space there contains only a plague at the present time. Hopefully; with time; that will change.

There is also a Don Gibson Theatre located in downtown Shelby, which houses most of his guitars and stage outfits. It is also a functioning musical venue which seats 4,000 people and hosts some of the leading country artists of the present day. Their site is at http://dongibsontheater.com/

And to view more about the NC Music Hall of Fame in Kannapolis, and the many varied artists who originated here, go to their website at; http://northcarolinamusichalloffame.org/

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