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 by The Gene Watson Fan Site, during 2014, 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 Ramey, which he submitted to this site on Thursday 31 July 2014.
Sean Brady would like to take this opportunity to say ‘thank you’ to Tony Ramey who made a special contribution to this unique part of this online ‘celebration of a Lone Star Hero’.
This quote was submitted on Thursday 31 July 2014.
‘Gene Watson is a hero of mine, and one of the last of the great country crooners from an era when country music had colour and texture, diversity, realness, and an authentic American conscience.
Gene’s music is as timeless and as vibrant as it always has been.
His voice and his songs will live forever’
Thank you, Tony Ramey, for your support of Gene Watson.
About Tony Ramey…
Tony Ramey hails from Kenova, West Virginia. A poet at heart, Tony Ramey began writing at the young age of ten.
When he was sixteen years old, Tony Ramey learned to play guitar and put his words to music, and sang and wrote his way through the Master’s program in English Literature at Marshall University: ‘I played through the weekends to cover books, have spending money, and get a relief of the rigors of the undergrad and masters program. I was always serious about my music and my writing, but I never planned to ‘go into the music business’. I had been around it growing up, so playing music was a way of life’.
Tony Ramey cut his musical teeth in the Tri-State area of Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia playing in country cover bands. During that time, Tony Ramey performed more than one hundred dates a year, opening for legendary and iconic country music artists, including Billy Ray Cyrus, Dan Seals (Sunday 8 February 1948 – Wednesday 25 March 2009), Reba McIntyre, Lorrie Morgan, George Jones (Saturday 12 September 1931 – Friday 26 April 2013), Keith Whitley (Thursday 1 July 1954 – Tuesday 9 May 1989) and Glen Campbell (Wednesday 22 April 1936 – Tuesday 8 August 2017).
In 1995, Tony Ramey was encouraged to come to Nashville by legendary record producer Buddy Cannon, who has produced albums for Kenny Chesney, Sammy Kershaw and George Jones (Saturday 12 September 1931 – Friday 26 April 2013), amongst others, and with whom Tony Ramey would collaborate in the studio in the early days of his country music career.
His Nashville run saw Tony Ramey in and out of record label offices negotiating deals that never quite came to fruition, all the while writing hits for publishers on Music Row, and recording his original music in studios all over Nashville: ‘I worked with some talented, good people there, and I still do from time to time. Even most of the label folks there are just plain good folks who still love great music, but they always seemed under the gun by the business-as-usual corporate climate. I would get close to firmin’ up a deal with a company – even go in the studio to record sides for a project – and somebody in New York or Los Angeles would pull the plug on this or that division’.
‘By the time I was a ten year veteran of the town, there were fewer than five majors left. A slew of artists and writers were set free and floundering without deals, and I was still where I had always been, with a loyal publisher (George Strait and Erv Woolsey’s company, Muy Bueno Music) walkin’ on the fringes because I was writin’ what I thought was real country music and tryin’ to live up to the songs that I had grown up listening to, the ‘Amarillo By Morning’ and ‘He Stopped Loving Her Today’ kind of songs’.
‘I’ll never forget the long conversations I had with the guys who wrote the big hits for Ronnie Milsap, George Strait, Garth Brooks, and the list goes on. Sittin’ in a room writin’ with them was great, but talkin’ to them about the power of a song was just as good, confirmin’ the beliefs I had about the ‘magic’ a song has and the power it possesses (or could possess) to change a person’s heart and mind forever’.
Tony Ramey has had hit songs and ‘Gold’ and ‘Platinum’ record awards for songs on albums recorded by George Strait, Trisha Yearwood, Doug Stone, Craig Morgan, John Michael Montgomery, Easton Corbin, Alabama, Johnny Lee, Aaron Watson and Jason Meadows, and a host of others.
After fourteen years of part-time touring and full-time writing, Tony Ramey decided to relocate in Texas, where the live music scene is vibrant and accessible to plenty of genres, including Tony’s brand of country. ‘Texas was a place I’d had my eye on for a few years. The live music venues are plentiful, the people still love the kind of heartland country music I do, and the new landscape is somethin’ that I had needed, creatively, for a while’.
‘Movin’ was less about gettin’ out of Nashville and more about goin’ somewhere new to recharge. A writer needs a change of scenery after bein’ in one place for a long time, and I was ready to get back to the country-side and touring’.
Tony Ramey has also recorded and seen the release of five records as an independent artist and currently travels all over the country playing and singing his songs.
No other artist has done so much in such a short time – Tony Ramey has been a college professor, an award-winning literary scholar, an award-winning songwriter and is one of the most successful artists on the Texas music scene. Tony Ramey’s repertoire of songs reaches over 1,800 in number and his songwriting career spans sixteen years as a professional.
Johnny Bush (Sunday 17 February 1935 – Friday 16 October 2020) recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Tonight Her Memory’s Raisin’ Hell’ and included the track on ‘Honky Tonic’ (BGM Records, 2004).
On Tuesday 16 November 2004, Tony Ramey saw the release of ‘Places’ (Music Mill Records, 2004), which included the following tracks:
‘Watertower Skyline’ (written by Trey Matthews and Tony Ramey)
‘This Ain’t California’ (written by David Chamberlain, Trey Matthews and Tony Ramey)
‘Bluer Than The Grass’ (written by Trey Matthews, Tony Ramey and John Schweers)
‘Human Being (A Fool)’ (written by Kelly Kenning, Trey Matthews and Tony Ramey)
‘If You’re Gonna Get Lost’ (written by Tony Ramey)
‘Let Me Be Lonely’ (written by Tony Ramey)
‘Lines’ (written by Willis R. Nance and Tony Ramey)
‘Broke Down In Georgia’ (written by Mickey Cates and Tony Ramey)
‘That’s How I Was Raised’ (written by Tony Ramey and Trent Tomlinson)
‘Dreaming Enough To Get Me By’ (written by Trey Matthews and Tony Ramey)
‘West Texas Lonely’ (written by Tony Ramey and John Schweers)
‘Closer To The Truth’ (written by Michael Bornheim and Tony Ramey)
‘Finer Things’ (written by Scott Davis, Kevin Mason and Tony Ramey)
‘Scars’ (written by Tony Ramey)
‘Feels Like Home To Me’ (written by Neal Coty and Tony Ramey)
‘Pray Hard’ (written by Brad Adkins and Tony Ramey)
On Thursday 30 March 2006, Tony Ramey saw the release of ‘Tony Ramey’ (Eversong Music Records, 2006), which included the following tracks:
‘The Side of Me You Need’
‘I’ll Call You’
‘Give It To Me Straight’
‘You Can Hear A Heart Break’
‘Lie To Me’
‘Daddy Had A Cane Pole’
‘I Can’t Turn It Off’
‘Heaven Is Her’
‘Heroes In The Field’
On Thursday 9 July 2009, Tony Ramey saw the release of ‘Is It Worth My Broken Heart’ (Eversong Music Records, 2009), which included the following tracks:
‘Get Away With It’
‘That Ain’t Livin’
‘If You Love Long Enough’
‘Baby, You’re Beautiful’
‘Love Goes A Long Way’
‘Is It Worth My Broken Heart’
‘More To Her’
‘Never Been To Texas’
‘My Back Yard’
‘I Love You’
Based outside of Dallas, Tony Ramey has been playing shows from north to south Texas, Louisiana, Tennessee and all over the Midwest since his move there from Nashville in 2011.
Fans are quick to say that Tony Ramey feels his music more deeply and performs it with more soulfulness than most other blues artists on Bourbon Street.
Katrina Elam recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Second Chance’ (co-written with Clay Mills and Irene Kelley) and included the track on ‘Pure Country 2: The Gift’ (WaterTower Music, 2011).
In 2012, Tony Ramey was featured on a Curb Records soundtrack album, ‘The Last Ride’ (Curb Records, 2012), which was released in the Fall of 2012; the movie was released in theaters in June 2012.
‘The Last Ride’ was a new independent movie about the life of Hank Williams (Monday 17 September 1923 – Thursday 1 January 1953). The movie, which starred Henry Thomas, Jesse James, Fred Dalton Thompson and Kaley Cuoco, focused on the period when Hank Williams was getting his life back in order.
In late 1952, Hank Williams (Monday 17 September 1923 – Thursday 1 January 1953) had arranged several New Year’s shows in West Virginia and Ohio. Hank Williams never got there; somewhere on that last highway, the country music legend passed away on New Years Day, in 1953, in the back of his powder blue Cadillac, carrying only his guitar and a notebook full of unfinished songs. Hank Williams was twenty-nine years old.
Inspired by the mysterious final days of Hank Williams’ life, ‘The Last Ride’ is the story of that final drive through the bleak Appalachian countryside of 1950s America. The movie soundtrack, which was released on Curb Records, played an integral role in the telling of this story, and included the following tracks:
‘The Last Ride Theme’ / this track was performed by Benjy Gaither
‘Hey, Good Lookin’ / this track was performed by Jett Williams
‘Honky Tonk Man’ / this track was performed by Russ Taff
‘Keep On The Sunny Side’ / this track was performed by Rebecca Frasier
‘I Will Marry You’ / this track was performed by Wes Hampton
‘It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels’ / this track was performed by Sarah Johns
‘Cold, Cold Heart’ / this track was performed by Doug Anderson
‘The Swing Low Sweet Chariot’ / this track was performed by Clyde Wright & The Incredible Golden Gates
‘I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry’ / this track was performed by Michael English
‘Longing’ / this track was performed by Jett Williams
‘Footprints’ / this track was performed by Benjy Gaither
‘I’m Winging My Way Back Home’ / this track was performed by The Blackwood Brothers
‘I Can’t Help It (If I’m Still In Love With You’ / this track was performed by Jett Williams
‘On Down The Road’ / this track was performed by Val Storey
‘Chino’ / this track was performed by Nathan Young
‘Ilene’ / this track was performed by Nathan Young
‘What Ya Gonna Do’ / this track was performed by Nathan Young
‘Tennessee Waltz’ / this track was performed by Nathan Young
‘O Come Angel Band’ / this track was performed by The Isaacs
‘Hank Williams’ Blues’ / this track was performed by Jett Williams
‘The Night Hank Williams Came To Town’ / this track was performed by Johnny Cash (Friday 26 February 1932 – Friday 12 September 2003) & Waylon Jennings (Tuesday 15 June 1937 – Wednesday 13 February 2002)
‘The Last Ride’ / this track was performed by Tony Ramey
On Wednesday 24 April 2013, Tony Ramey saw the release of ‘Once Again’ (Dig It Deep Records, 2013), which included the following tracks:
‘You Got Me’
‘What Do You Say?’
‘The Last Ride’
‘When My Baby Comes Around’
‘But For Love’
‘Rainy Day Song’
‘Baby That’s You’
‘Thy Sins for Thee’
‘The Last Ride’ (Reprise)
On Saturday 11 May 2013, Tony Ramey saw the release of ‘Throwback’ (Dig It Deep Records, 2013), which included the following tracks:
‘Dig It Deep’
‘There’s A Song For That’
‘That’s A Man’
‘When I’m Gone’
‘Fly Away In My Mind’
‘Love Don’t Get Old’
‘Matthew, Mark & Luke’
‘That’s Just A Woman’
‘It’s Been A While’
‘Livin’ On Sunshine’
On Monday 21 July 2014, Tony Ramey saw the release of ‘The Bible, Bottle & The Gun’; a single which featured guest vocals from Willie Nelson.
At the time of the acquisition of this ‘Peer’s Quote’ about Gene Watson, in July 2014, Tony Ramey was based out of Dallas, Texas and was a Ford Motor Company branded artist.
John Michael Montgomery recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘I Don’t Want This Song To End’ (co-written with Nettie Musick) and included the track on ‘Leave A Mark’ (Atlantic Records, 1998).
Doug Stone recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Make Up In Love’ (co-written with Danny Orton) and included the track on ‘Make Up In Love’ (Atlantic Records, 1999); the track reached No.19 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart in 1999.
Craig Morgan recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Something To Write Home About’ (co-written with Craig Morgan) and included the track on ‘Craig Morgan’ (Atlantic Nashville Records, 2000); the track reached No.38 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks Chart in 2000.
Trisha Yearwood recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Second Chance’ (co-written with Irene Kelley and Clay Mills) and included the track on ‘Inside Out’ (MCA Nashville Records, 2001).
The Stevens Sisters (Beth & April Stevens) recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Lonesome Wind’ (co-written with Kevin Mason and Scott Davis) and included the track on ‘Little By Little’ (Rounder Records, 2002).
Trent Tomlinson recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Country Is My Rocl’ (co-written with Trent Tomlinson) and included the track on ‘Country Is My Rock’ (Lyric Street Records, 2006).
Cole Degges & The Lonesome recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Twelve Ounces Deep’ (co-written with Trey Matthews) and included the track on ‘Cole Degges & The Lonesome’ (Columbia Nashville Records, 2007).
George Strait recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Hot Grease & Zydeco’ (co-written with Gordon Bradberry) and included the track on ‘Twang’ (MCA Nashville Records, 2009).
Clinton Gregory recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Too Much Ain’t Enough’ (co-written with Trey Matthews and Earl Clark) and included the track on ‘Too Much Ain’t Enough’ (Melody Roundup Music Records, 2012).
Aaron Watson recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Summertime Girl’ (co-written with Aaron Watson, Jon Wolfe and Roger Springer) and included the track on ‘Real Good Time’ (Big Label Records, 2012).
Alabama recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘That’s How I Was Raised’ (co-written with Charley Stefl, Skip Sasser and Trent Tomlinson); the track was produced by Harold Shedd and was included on ‘Alabama & Friends’ (Show Dog Records / Universal Music Records, 2013), a various artists Alabama tribute album.
Collin Raye recorded Tony Ramey’s ‘Scars’ (co-written with Scotty Wray) and included the track on ‘Scars’ (BFD Records / Audium Nashville, 2020); the track featured gust vocals from Miranda Lambert.
• Visit Tony Ramey’s official site at tonyramey.com