Gene Watson Peer’s Quote from Tony Martin: April 2018

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 2018, 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 Tony Martin, which he submitted to this site on Wednesday 4 April 2018.

Sean Brady would like to take this opportunity to say ‘thank you’ to Tony Martin who made a special contribution to this unique part of this online ‘celebration of a Lone Star Hero’.

Tony Martin



Tony Martin
This quote was submitted on Wednesday 4 April 2018.

‘Over the last forty-five years, I’ve watched Gene Watson churn out memorable hit after hit, with perfect pitch, timing and lyric interpretation.

If this man doesn’t belong in The Country Music Hall of Fame, nobody does.

Let’s make room for a good man!’

Thank you, Tony Martin, for your support of Gene Watson.

About Tony Martin…

Tony Martin

Tony Martin attended South Pittsburg High School in South Pittsburg Tennessee.

After moving to Mobile, Alabama Tony Martin formed Plum Loco band and later performed as a solo artist.

Tony Martin is an international recording artist and a singer / songwriter, who has enjoyed numerous No.1 records in the European Country Music Charts.

Tony Martin is known for a highly regarded chart single, ‘Something Nice About The Rain’, which was written and produced by mega songwriters Milton Brown and Steve Dorff.

Tony Martin is best known in the United States for his sports songs, which were written for ESPN, including ‘Omaha’, a commemorative to College World Series in Omaha, Nebraska and a Peyton Manning tribute in 1997 which Manning still today counts as his favourite.

Tony Martin’s main influences were Merle Haggard (Tuesday 6 April 1937 – Wednesday 6 April 2016) and Ray Charles (Tuesday 23 September 1930 – Thursday 10 June 2004).

In his early days, in the early 1970s, Tony Martin enjoyed playing mostly Merle Haggard (Tuesday 6 April 1937 – Wednesday 6 April 2016) songs with Kenny Berry and Mike Headrick in and around the South Pittsburg area of Tennessee.

Tony Martin: 'Back To Bakersfield' (Sweet Lake Records / Hitsound Records, 1993)

In 1993, Tony Martin saw the release of ‘Back To Bakersfield’ (Sweet Lake Records / Hitsound Records, 1993), which was produced by Mike Headrick, at Mikron Studio in South Pittsburg, Tennessee, and included the following tracks:

‘All By Myself Again’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and  Lonnie Williams

‘It Must Have Been Something I Drank’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and Lyndia J. Shafer

‘Give My Heart A Break’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019), Rick Williamson and Lonnie Williams

‘I’ll Sleep Tight Tonight’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019), Lyndia J. Shafer and Lonnie Williams

‘Go Ahead & Leave Me, It’s Okay’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019), Lyndia J. Shafer and Lonnie Williams

‘Think I’ll Step Out & Two-Step Tonight’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and Warren D. Robb

‘Love Sometimes Paints A Rainbow’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and Lyndia J. Shafer

‘My Temperature Rises When The Sun Goes Down’ (written by Mike Headrick)

‘You’ve Already Said Goodbye’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and Rick Williamson

‘I’m Takin’ Me Away From You’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and Lonnie Williams

‘It’s Gonna Be Love’ (written by Benny Berry)

‘I’ll Have To Let You Go’ (written by Benny Berry)

‘Back To Bakersfield’ (written by Mike Headrick)

Personnel involved in the recording of Tony Martin’s ‘Back To Bakersfield’ (Sweet Lake Records, 1993) included the following:

Tony Martin (vocals)
Don Barrett and Larry Crew (bass)
Jimmy Hyde (drums)
Gene Sisk and Gary Smith (keyboards)
Tim Starnes (harmonica)
Hank Singer (fiddle)
Don King (acoustic rhythm guitar)
Mike Headrick (guitar, steel guitar, Fretted Dobro)
Benny Berry and Frankie Hyatt (background vocals)

Tony Martin: 'Little Dutch Maiden' (Sweet Lake Records, 1995)

In 1995, Tony Martin saw the release of ‘Little Dutch Maiden’ (Sweet Lake Records, 1995), which included the following tracks:

‘It’s Much Too Late To Start Quittin’ Now’
‘Little Dutch Maiden’ (written by Tony Martin)
‘Memories of Home’
‘Move Over, Sir’
‘Things To Do Before I Die’
‘Rain Delay’
‘It Might As Well Rain’
‘Whodunnit’
‘I’m Alive’

‘The Bottle Let Me Down’, which was written by Merle Haggard (Tuesday 6 April 1937 – Wednesday 6 April 2016)


‘Long Black Veil’, which was written by Marijohn Wilkin (Wednesday 14 July 1920 – Saturday 28 October 2006) and Danny Dill (Friday 19 September 1924 – Thursday 23 October 2008)

‘Maybe, Maybe Not’

Tony Martin: 'I'll Meet You in Texas' (Bob Grady Records, 1996)

In 1996, Tony Martin saw the release of ‘I’ll Meet You in Texas’ (Bob Grady Records, 1996), which included the following tracks:

‘Honky Tonkin’ Love Affairs’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and Lonnie Williams

‘If Leavin’ Was Easy’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and Lonnie Williams

‘Highway of Love’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and Dallas Frazier (Friday 27 October 1939 – Friday 14 January 2022)

‘What Did You Expect Me To Do’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019)

‘Back In Tupelo’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and Lonnie Williams

‘Palace Walls’

‘Just In Time For The Blues’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and Lonnie Williams

‘Where Love Started Out’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019) and Lonnie Williams

‘Please Don’t Do That Anymore’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019)

‘Sour Grapes’

‘It’s All Over Town’, which was written by Sanger D. ‘Whitey’ Shafer (Wednesday 24 October 1934 – Saturday 12 January 2019)

‘She’s In Texas Tonight’

Tony Martin: 'Stronger Than That' (Country Discovery Records, 2002)

In 2002, Tony Martin saw the release of ‘Stronger Than That’ (Country Discovery Records, 2002), which included the following tracks:

‘The Moon Won‚Äôt Glow’
‘Woman Enough’
‘Don’t Cry’
‘Stronger Than That’
‘Free To Love Someone Again’
‘You Can‚Äôt Go Back’
‘I Should Have, But I Didn’t’
‘Promise Me The Moon’
‘California Blind’
‘It Hurt Me To Tell You A Lie’
‘Houston Before Dawn’
‘Your Love Was Meant For Him’

Personnel involved in the recording of Tony Martin’s ‘Stronger Than That’ (Country Discovery Records, 2002) included the following:

Tony Martin (vocals, background vocals)
Mike Headrick (guitar, Dobro, steel guitar)
Kenny Berry (bass)
Bob Courter (drums, percussion)
Joe Caverlee (fiddle)
Tim Atwood (piano, keyboards)
Scott Monroe (saxophone)
Jackie Harling (background vocals)

Tony Martin

On Saturday 29 June 2013, Tony Martin staged a reunion concert at Princess Theatre, 215 Cedar Avenue, in South Pittsburg, Tennessee; the concert featured Tony Martin, along with Kenny Berry, Mike Headrick and Bob Courter, and commenced at 7:00pm.

Tony Martin had such a soft spot for his early days in the early 1970s, in and around the South Pittsburg area of Tennessee playing mostly songs associated with Merle Haggard (Tuesday 6 April 1937 – Wednesday 6 April 2016), with Kenny Berry and Mike Headrick, that he threw a big party just so he could do it again.

The set list featured songs by Merle Haggard (Tuesday 6 April 1937 – Wednesday 6 April 2016), and hit songs associated with George Jones (Saturday 12 September 1931 – Friday 26 April 2013), along with Tony Martin original material, including ‘Peyton Manning, Do We Love You’ and ‘Little Dutch Maiden’.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v=h9tpiGEgrKA

In 2016, Tony Martin performed, on keyboards and vocals, at ‘Live at The Tower Stage’ at The 20th Annual Cornbread Festival in South Pittsburg, Tennessee, accompanied by Mike Headrick (guitar), Kenny Berry (bass guitar and background vocals) and Ernie McCoy (drums).

Leona Williams

At the time of the acquisition of this Gene Watson ‘Peer’s Quote’, in April 2018, Tony Martin was collaborating with Leona Williams, the third wife of Merle Haggard (Tuesday 6 April 1937 – Wednesday 6 April 2016).  Leona Williams and Merle Haggard married on Saturday 7 October 1978, and divorced in 1983.  Tony Martin was writing with Leona Williams and recording a duet album.

Tony Martin continues to work with his long time collaborator, the renowned Mike Headrick, who is an acclaimed songwriter, producer, record label owner, along with being one of the most respected steel guitarists, and most versatile musician, in the country music field.

Tony Martin currently lives in Mobile, Alabama.

Tony Martin

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