Harlan Howard

Real Name:
Harlan Perry Howard
Profile:
Prolific American songwriter, principally in country music (September 8, 1927 - March 3, 2002).

In a career spanning six decades, Howard wrote a large number of popular and enduring songs, recorded by a variety of different artists. Howard was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1997.
Howard was born in 1927 in Detroit, Michigan, and grew up on a farm in Kentucky. As a child he listened to the Grand Ole Opry radio show. In later years Howard recalled the personal formative influence of country music:

I was captured by the songs as much as the singer. They grabbed my heart. The reality of country music moved me. Even when I was a kid, I liked the sad songs… songs that talked about true life. I recognised this music as a simple plea. It beckoned me.

Howard completed nine years of formal education, though he was an avid reader. When he was 12 years of age Harlan began writing songs, "an enthusiasm fuelled by an appetite for books and an ear for a telling phrase.”

After serving as a paratrooper with the United States Army, he went to Los Angeles, California, hoping to sell his music.

He did manual labor while writing songs and pushing his finished material. Eventually he sold some of his compositions and, after a few minor successes, his song, "Pick Me Up on Your Way Down", recorded by Charlie Walker, went to No. 2 on the country music charts in late 1958. A year later Ray Price had a major country hit with "Heartaches By The Number"; simultaneously a pop version of the song performed by Guy Mitchell went to No. 1 on the pop chart. Buoyed by these two major hits, Howard moved to Nashville, Tennessee in 1960. Bringing along a large portfolio of compositions, he signed a contract with Acuff-Rose Music. Howard's songs were so immediately successful that in 1961 alone he had 15 of his compositions on the country music charts, earning him ten BMI awards. Among his biggest hits was "I Fall to Pieces", co-written with Hank Cochran and recorded by Patsy Cline. Cline also recorded his "He Called Me Baby", which was later a #1 C&W hit for Charlie Rich as "She Called Me Baby". He also wrote the classic Kingston Trio song "Everglades", and the song "Busted", originally a hit for both Ray Charles and Johnny Cash and later a hit for John Conlee who's used the song to create awareness for Feed the Children.

Howard formulated the oft-quoted definition of a great country song: "Three chords and the truth."

Howard was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1973 and the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1997. He died in 2002, aged 74, and was buried in Nashville City Cemetery.
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Albums

Harlan Howard - Harlan Howard Sings Harlan Howard album art Harlan Howard Harlan Howard Sings Harlan Howard (Album) Capitol Records US 1961 Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - Billboard Award Album album art Harlan Howard Billboard Award Album (Album) Monument US 1965 Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - Mr. Songwriter album art Harlan Howard Mr. Songwriter RCA US 1967 Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - Down To Earth album art Harlan Howard Down To Earth RCA US 1968 Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - To The Silent Majority With Love. album art Harlan Howard To The Silent Majority With Love. Nugget (3) US 1971 Sell This Version
TLP-0001 Harlan Howard - Nashville's Master Songwriters Sing Their Hits album art Harlan Howard / Allen Reynolds / John Schweers / Danny Dill Harlan Howard / Allen Reynolds / John Schweers / Danny Dill - Nashville's Master Songwriters Sing Their Hits(LP) Triple I Records TLP-0001 US 1977 Sell This Version

Singles & EPs

Harlan Howard - We're Proud To Call Him Son / Legion Of The Lost album art Harlan Howard We're Proud To Call Him Son / Legion Of The Lost (Single) Capitol Records US 1961 Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - I Ain't Got Nobody / Ramblin' Son-Of-A-Gun album art Harlan Howard I Ain't Got Nobody / Ramblin' Son-Of-A-Gun (Single) Capitol Records US 1962 Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - Wishin' She Was Here (Instead Of Me) album art Harlan Howard Wishin' She Was Here (Instead Of Me) (Single) Capitol Records US 1962 Sell This Version
4928 Harlan Howard - My Baby's His Baby Now album art Harlan Howard My Baby's His Baby Now(7") Capitol Records 4928 US 1963 Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - The Deepening Snow album art Harlan Howard The Deepening Snow (Single) Monument US 1964 Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - Time To Bum Again album art Harlan Howard Time To Bum Again (Single) Monument US 1964 Sell This Version
45-907 Harlan Howard - Busted / The Everglades album art Harlan Howard Busted / The Everglades(7", Promo) Monument 45-907 US 1965 Sell This Version
45-919DJ Harlan Howard - Another Bridge To Burn album art Harlan Howard Another Bridge To Burn(7", Single, Promo) Monument 45-919DJ US 1966 Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - Take It And Go album art Harlan Howard Take It And Go (Single) RCA Victor US 1967 Sell This Version
47-9352 Harlan Howard - It's Nothing To Me album art Harlan Howard It's Nothing To Me(7") RCA Victor 47-9352 US 1968 Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - Sunday Morning Christian / That Little Boy Who Follows Me album art Harlan Howard Sunday Morning Christian / That Little Boy Who Follows Me (Single) Nugget (3) US 1971 Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - What's Left Of Me album art Harlan Howard What's Left Of Me Monument Record Corp. US Unknown Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - Where Were You When I Was Young / Old Podner album art Harlan Howard Where Were You When I Was Young / Old Podner RCA Victor US Unknown Sell This Version
Harlan Howard - Uncle Sam (I'm A Patriot) album art Harlan Howard Uncle Sam (I'm A Patriot) (Single) Nugget Records (2) US Unknown Sell This Version

Compilations

MILL 5001 Harlan Howard - Singer And Songwriter album art Harlan Howard Singer And Songwriter(LP, Comp) Mill Records MILL 5001 Sweden 1981 Sell This Version