“Always on My Mind” Songwriter Wayne Carson Dies at 72

“Always on My Mind” Songwriter Wayne Carson Dies at 72

Wayne Carson, a prolific songwriter best known for his award-winning “Always on My Mind,” died Monday (July 20) at age 72 from congestive heart failure and other ailments. Wayne was a member of the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Born in Denver, Wayne moved to Nashville in 1962 and found his first major songwriting success with Eddy Arnold’s “Somebody Like Me,” a No. 1 hit in 1966. The following year, Memphis-based rock band The Box Tops took Wayne’s song “The Letter” to the top of the pop charts. “The Letter” became a rock and pop classic and was rerecorded several times, including versions by Joe Cocker, Al Green and Johnny Rivers.

Easily Wayne’s most awarded song was the tender ballad “Always on My Mind,” first recorded by Elvis Presley and Brenda Lee. The definitive version was cut by Willie Nelson, who turned it into a No. 1 country hit in 1982. “Always on My Mind” won the Country Music Association award for Song of the Year in 1982 and 1983 and copped Grammy awards in 1983 for the all-genre Song of the Year and Country Song of the Year. Wayne had often noted that he wrote most of “Always on My Mind” in about 10 minutes at his home in Springfield, Mo., and completed it with co-writers Johnny Christopher and Mark James.

Wayne wrote additional hits like “She’s Actin’ Single (I’m Drinkin’ Doubles),” a No. 1 for Gary Stewart in 1975, “Neon Rainbow” and “Soul Deep” for The Box Tops and Conway Twitty’s 1974 No. 1, “I See the Want To in Your Eyes.” He was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1997.

NASH Country Weekly sends our condolences to Wayne’s family.

photo courtesy Wayne Carson

Daily Dose

Dustin Lynch & MacKenzie Porter talk about “Thinking ‘Bout You”

Dustin Lynch & MacKenzie Porter talk about “Thinking ‘Bout You”

Dustin Lynch recalls the exact moment during the writing of “Thinking ‘Bout You” when they thought it could work as a collaboration, “We realized, after we got to the chorus, wait a second, this is the duet moment we’ve been looking for. We can have the girl on the other end of the line, and her come in on the second verse, and now it’s a conversation. And I do think that’s why it’s so approachable and people relate to it and those phone calls can be life changing sometimes.”

As the song is knocking on the door to the number-one spot on the country music airplay chart, MacKenzie Porter shares that she and Dustin haven’t had a lot of opportunities to perform the hit song together, “The crazy part is like, we’ve actually probably sang it separately, more than we’ve sang it together, because our touring schedules are different. So then when we do get to do it together, it’s like oh yeah this is how, this is how it’s supposed to go, I’m not supposed to sing Dustin’s first verse, which I do in my own show. It just feels so natural.”

Photo Courtesy of Dustin Lynch & MacKenzie Porter