Gene Watson's Peers within the country music industry believe in the sheer talent of this unassuming man from east Texas, so much so that Gene is regarded by many of them as 'the singer's singer' - and rightly so!
All of Gene Watson's Peers, who were contacted during 2011, were most gracious with their time and words.
It is here, within this special part of The Gene Watson Fan Site, that you have an opportunity to read a quote from Freddie Hart, which he submitted to this site on Wednesday 12 October 2011.
Sean Brady would like to take this opportunity to say 'thank you' to Freddie Hart who made a special contribution to this unique part of this online 'celebration of a Lone Star Hero'.
This quote was submitted on Wednesday 12 October 2011.
'Over the years, I've done shows with Gene Watson and found he is a very down to earth person and is as real as pure water.
He loves to meet fans and treat them like he should.
A great singer and wonderful entertainer who is under rated and should be given more credit.
Gene has really paid his dues and I'm proud to know him as a friend'.
Thank you, Freddie Hart, for your support of Gene Watson.
About Freddie Hart...
Freddie Hart was born Frederick Segrest on Tuesday 21 December 1926, to a sharecropper family in Lochapoka, Alabama and spent his childhood in nearby Phoenix City, Alabama along with his fourteen siblings.
Freddie Hart learned to play guitar when he was five years old and quit school by the time he was twelve. When he was fifteen years old, Freddie Hart lied about his age in order to join the United States Marine Corps during World War II, seeing combat action on Guam and Iwo Jima.
Following the war, Freddie Hart lived in California where he taught classes in self-defence at Los Angeles Police Academy.
Freddie Hart got an early career break when Carl Smith (Tuesday 15 March 1927 - Saturday 16 January 2010) recorded his song 'Loose Talk' (co-written with Ann Lucas) in 1955; the track, which was included on 'Carl Smith' (Columbia Records, 1955), was No.1 on the Billboard country music singles chart for seven weeks in January / February 1955.
Patsy Cline (Thursday 8 September 1932 - Tuesday 5 March 1963) recorded Freddie Hart's 'Lovin' in Vain' and included the track on 'That's How My Heartache Begins' (Decca Records, 1964); the track was the 'B' side of Patsy's hit single 'I Fall to Pieces', which was written by (No.1 on the Billboard country music singles chart in 1961).
George Jones (Saturday 12 September 1931 - Friday 26 April 2013) recorded Freddie Hart's 'My Tears are Overdue' and included the track on 'George Jones Sings More New Favourites' (United Artists Records, 1964); the track reached No.15 on the Billboard country music singles chart in 1964.
Porter Wagoner (Friday 12 August 1927 - Sunday 28 October 2007) recorded Freddie Hart's 'Skid Row Joe' and included the track on 'Confessions of a Broken Man' (RCA Records, 1966); the track reached No.3 on the Billboard country music singles chart in 1966.
During the early 1950s, Freddie Hart and his family moved to California to further the growing country music scene there.
In 1951, Freddie Hart joined Lefty Frizzell's band for a year.
It was through Lefty Frizzell (Saturday 31 March 1928 - Saturday 19 July 1975) that Freddie Hart obtained his first recording contract with Capitol Records in 1953; he released several singles, including his version of 'Loose Talk', but none of these singles were successful.
In 1958, Freddie Hart signed with Columbia Records and scored his first Billboard country music singles chart hit with 'The Wall', which reached No.24 in 1959.
Freddie Hart's biggest hit single for Columbia Records was 'The Key's in The Mailbox', which reached No.18 in 1960.
The tracks, 'Loose Talk', 'The Wall' and 'The Key's in The Mailbox' were subsequently included on 'The Spirited Freddie Hart' (Columbia Records, 1962).
Loretta Lynn recorded Freddie Hart's 'Loose Talk' (co-written with Ann Lucas) and included the track on 'Before I'm Over You' (Decca Records, 1964).
In 1965, Freddie Hart signed with Kapp Records, where he scored several Billboard Top 40 country music hit singles between 1965 and 1968; the biggest of these hit singles included 'Hank Williams' Guitar' (No.23, 1965), 'Born a Fool' (No.21, 1968) and 'Togetherness' (No.24, 1968).
In 1969, Freddie Hart re-signed with Capitol Records and soon became a part of the Bakersfield sound by signing up with the song-writing and management company of Buck Owens (Monday 12 August 1929 - Saturday 25 March 2006).
In early 1970, Freddie Hart scored a Billboard Top 30 country music hit single with 'The Whole World's Holdin' Hands', which reached No.27; the track was included on 'The New Sounds of Freddie Hart' (Capitol Records, 1970).
Freddie Hart's song 'Togetherness', which was a hit for him in 1968, became a Billboard Top 15 country music hit single for Buck Owens (Monday 12 August 1929 - Saturday 25 March 2006) & Susan Raye in the summer of 1970. Freddie Hart also scored several minor country music hit singles during the year.
In 1971, Freddie Hart released a song which he wrote called 'Easy Loving', which was first recorded in the summer of 1969; the track was included on 'California Grapevine' (Capitol Records, 1970).
Released in the summer of 1971, 'Easy Loving' rapidly began climbing the Billboard charts; by September 1971, it was at the top of the Billboard country music singles chart (No.1 for three weeks in September / October 1971) and reached No.17 on the Billboard pop music singles chart in 1971. The track was also played on adult contemporary radio stations, earning a position on Billboard's Easy Listening survey.
'Easy Loving' ultimately won Freddie Hart numerous awards from both the Academy of Country Music (ACM) and the Country Music Association (CMA). The song sold over one million copies and was awarded a 'Gold' record by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in November 1971.
The album of the same name, 'Easy Loving' (Capitol Records, 1971), also achieved 'Gold' status and the song also won a Grammy Award for Freddie Hart.
Loretta Lynn & Conway Twitty (Friday 1 September 1933 - Saturday 5 June 1993) recorded Freddie Hart's 'Easy Loving' and included the track on 'Lead Me On' (MCA Records, 1971).
Eddy Arnold (Wednesday 15 May 1918 - Thursday 8 May 2008) recorded Freddie Hart's 'Easy Loving' and included the track on 'Loving Her was Easier' (RCA Victor Records, 1971).
Ferlin Husky (Thursday 3 December 1925 - Thursday 17 March 2011) recorded Freddie Hart's 'Easy Loving' and included the track on 'Just Plain Lonely' (Capitol Records, 1972).
Following the success of 'Easy Loving', Freddie Hart and his backup band, The Heartbeats, enjoyed a string of Billboard Top 5 country music hit singles, including the following:
'My Hang-up is You' (No.1 for six weeks in March / April 1972)
'Bless Your Heart' (No.1 for two weeks in August 1972)
'Got The All-overs For You' (No.1 for three weeks in December 1972)
'Super Kind of Woman' (No.1 for one week in April 1973)
'Trip to Heaven' (No.1 for one week in August 1973)
'Hang in There Girl' (No.2, 1974)
'The Want-to's' (No.3, 1974)
'My Woman's Man' (No.3, 1974)
'The First Time' (No.2, 1975)
'I'd Like to Sleep Till I Get Over You' (No.5, 1975)
'The Warm Side of You' (No.6, 1975)
Freddie Hart has been referred to, by many fans, as 'The Heart & Soul of Country Music'.
With the success of 'Easy Loving' and other songs which he had written, plus a popular concert attraction on the road, Freddie Hart became independently wealthy and owned a song-writing company, a school for the blind, a trucking company, along with a chain of martial arts studios - his hobby was as a master of karate.
By 1976, Freddie Hart continued to have major Billboard country music hit singles, although now his streak of Top 10 country music hit singles were replaced by a streak of Top 20 and Top 30 hits; these hit singles included the following:
'You are The Song Inside of Me' (No.11, 1976)
'That Look in Her Eyes' (No.11, 1976)
'Thank God She's Mine' (No.11, 1977)
'The Pleasure's Been All Mine' (No.13, 1977)
'Toe to Toe' (No.21, 1978)
'Wasn't It Easy Baby' (No.28, 1979)
Freddie Hart's last Billboard Top 10 country music hit single was 'Why Lovers Turn to Strangers' in 1977, which reached No.8.
In 1980, Freddie Hart signed with Sunbird Records, where he immediately scored a Billboard Top 20 country music hit single with 'Sure Thing', which reached No.15.
Freddie Hart followed this up with three Billboard Top 40 country music hit singles; 'Roses are Red' (No.33, 1980), 'You're Crazy, Man' (No.31, 1981) and 'You were There' (No.38, 1981).
The release of these tracks ended Freddie Hart's days as a major country music artist.
In 1985 and 1987, Freddie Hart enjoyed a couple of minor hits on El Dorado Records and 5th Avenue Records, with his last hit being 'The Best Love I Ever Had' in 1987, which reached No.77.
Rosie Flores recorded Freddie Hart's 'Lovin' in Vain' and included the track on 'Rosie Flores' (American Beat Records / Reprise Records, 1987).
Kate Brislin & Katy Moffatt recorded Freddie Hart's 'It Takes One to Know One', which was co-written with Harlan Howard (Thursday 8 September 1927 - Sunday 3 March 2002), and included the track on 'Sleepness Nights' (Rounder Records, 1996).
In 2001, Freddie Hart was inducted into Alabama Music Hall of Fame.
Deke Dickerson recorded Freddie Hart's 'Snatch It & Grab It' and included the track on 'Number One Hit Record!' (Hightone Records, 1998); the track was subsequently included on 'My Name is Deke' (Hightone Records, 2005).
Freddie Hart retains a large following in Europe and the United States, where he continues to perform at music festivals, universities, churches and industry events.
On Tuesday 21 April 2009, Jesse Winchester (Wednesday 17 May 1944 - Friday 11 April 2014) saw the release of 'Love Filling Station' (Appleseed Recordings, 2009); one of the included tracks was Freddie Hart's 'Loose Talk' (co-written with Ann Lucas), which featured guest vocals from Claire Lynch.
• Visit Freddie Hart's Official Site at mreasylovin.com