Mel Tillis

Country Music Singer and Musician
Born Aug 8, 1932

Lonnie Melvin "Mel" Tillis is an American country music singer. Although he recorded songs since the late 1950s, his biggest success occurred in the 1970s, with a long list of Top 10 hits. Tillis's biggest hits include "I Ain't Never", "Good Woman Blues", and "Coca-Cola Cowboy". On February 13, 2012 President Barack Obama awarded Tillis the National Medal of Arts For his contributions to country music.… Read More

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News + Updates

Browse recent news and stories about Mel Tillis.

  • Mel Tillis Hospitalized Following Colon Surgery
    Fox News - Jan 15, 2016
  • Even Scalpers Are Staying Away
    Huffington Post - Jul 05, 2013
  • Toby Keith's July 6 Twister Relief Show Expands Lineup
    USA Today - Jun 19, 2013
  • Curb Records Celebrates 50 Years
    GAC - Great American Country - Aug 07, 2012


Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of Mel Tillis.


1932 Birth Tillis was born in Plant City, Florida but later raised in Pahokee, Florida (near West Palm Beach) in 1932. … Read More


1955 22 Years Old After leaving the Air Force in 1955, Tillis returned to Florida where he worked a number of odd jobs, eventually finding employment with the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad in Tampa, Florida. … Read More
1957 24 Years Old Tillis wrote "I'm Tired," a No. 3 country hit for Webb Pierce in 1957. … Read More
1958 25 Years Old In 1958, he had his first Top 40 hit, "The Violet and a Rose," followed by the Top 25 hit "Sawmill." … Read More


1965 - 1968 2 More Events
1969 36 Years Old Things turned around in 1969 for Tillis. … Read More
1970 37 Years Old In 1970, he reached the Top 5 with "Heart Over Mind," which peaked at No. 3 on the Hot Country Songs list. … Read More
1972 39 Years Old In 1972, Tillis achieved his first chart-topper with his version of his song "I Ain't Never." … Read More


1974 41 Years Old After the success of "I Ain't Never," Tillis had another hit, which came close to No. 1 (reaching No. 3), entitled "Neon Rose," followed by "Sawmill," which reached No. 2. "Midnight, Me and the Blues" was another near chart-topper in 1974. … Read More
1976 43 Years Old 1 More Event
Tillis achieved his biggest success with MCA Records, with which he signed in 1976.
1978 45 Years Old He achieved another No. 1 in 1978 with "I Believe In You" and then again in 1979 with "Coca-Cola Cowboy," which was put in the Clint Eastwood movie Every Which Way but Loose, in which he also made a cameo appearance. … Read More
1979 46 Years Old 1 More Event
In mid-1979, Tillis switched to another record company, Elektra Records.
1981 48 Years Old Until 1981, Tillis remained on top of his game as one of country music's most successful vocalists of the era. "Your Body Is an Outlaw" went to No. 3 in 1980, followed by another Top 10 hit, "Steppin' Out." "Southern Rains" in 1981 was his last No. 1 hit. … Read More
1982 49 Years Old He remained with Elektra until 1982 before switching back to MCA for a brief period in 1983.


1984 51 Years Old That summer, he scored a Top 10 hit with "In The Middle Of The Night" and had his last Top 10 hit with "New Patches" in 1984. … Read More
1991 58 Years Old He briefly signed with RCA Records, as well as Mercury Records, and later Curb Records in 1991. … Read More


1998 65 Years Old In 1998, he teamed up with Bobby Bare, Waylon Jennings, and Jerry Reed to form The Old Dogs. … Read More
2007 74 Years Old The Grand Ole Opry inducted Mel Tillis on June 9, 2007. … Read More
2012 79 Years Old Tillis's biggest hits include "I Ain't Never", "Good Woman Blues", and "Coca-Cola Cowboy". On February 13, 2012, President Barack Obama awarded Tillis the National Medal of Arts for his contributions to country music. … Read More
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