Sign up for newsletter

Manager, musician Tillman Frank dies

Thursday, October 26, 2006 – Tillman B. Franks, who performed on the original Louisiana Hayride and also managed Johnny Horton and David Houston, died Thursday after a lengthy illness at 86.

Franks was born in Arkansas, but grew up in Shreveport at 2. By 14, he learned how to play guitar. During World War II, while on the island of Saipan, he was part of a band called the Rainbow Boys, which also included Pete Seeger.

Franks played standup bass for the Bailes Brothers on the hayride's first broadcast on April 3, 1948.

Franks performed as a bassist after the war with Webb Pierce. He later managed Pierce, Horton, Slim Whitman, Jimmy and Johnny, Billy Walker and others.

Franks also wrote or co-wrote are "Honky Tonk Man," "North to Alaska," "Springtime in Alaska" and "How Far is Heaven."

Franks was a passenger in the 1960 crash that killed Horton. Franks was badly injured in that accident and had a scar on his forehead from the accident.

Editorial: Walking the talk – When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: Drive-By Truckers finds little to celebrate – While introducing "Guns of Umpqua," off the new "American Band" album, Drive-By Truckers' Patterson Hood wondered out loud - in a profanity-laced observation - why he can never seem to see a flag not at half-mast anymore. "We can do better, people!" he admonished the crowd. In an election year with two of the most... »»»
Concert Review: Simpson rides the night out in style – Sturgill Simpson came to Beantown with a deserved music reputation after three albums and a well-received, albeit quite adventurous release earlier this year, "A Sailor's Guide to Earth." He doesn't have hits per se or much of a commercial presence. His rep has been built on quality. While the Kentuckian's first two discs... »»»
Subscribe to Country News Digest Country News Digest      Follow Country Standard Time on twitter CST      Visit Country Standard Time on Facebook CST

Elsewhere in the news

Currently at the CST blogs

For Shires, home is where the family lies Mercy Rose Isbell recently celebrated her first birthday and, ironically, the album she helped inspire has just been released. Synchronicity is a beautiful thing. Mercy Rose is, of course, the daughter of singer/songwriters Jason Isbell and Amanda Shires, two of the most gifted Americana artists working today... ... »»»