Charlie Louvin, who began his long career in country music as one-half of The Louvin Brothers, died Jan. 26 at his home in Wartrace, Tenn. He was 83. Louvin was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer during summer 2010 and subsequently had surgery to help battle the disease.
In a statement released Jan. 26, Brett Steele, Louvin’s manager, said: “Charlie’s reach was immeasurable, from The Beatles to Gram Parsons. While The Louvin Brothers will be remembered as one of the greatest country duos in the history of country music, Charlie’s solo career was just as successful and relevant. But his greatest legacy was Charlie Louvin the man, husband, father and friend. That outshines any of his musical contributions to our society. He will be greatly missed but never forgotten.”
Louvin was a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame, and he was the oldest living member of the Grand Ole Opry, having been made a member in 1955.
The Louvin Brothers (Charlie and Ira) are perhaps best known for the album “Satan Is Real,” which features such songs as “There’s a Higher Power,” “The Christian Life” and “Are You Afraid to Die.” During the 1950s and 1960s, their hit singles included “Don’t Laugh,” “My Baby’s Gone” and “I Love You Best of All.” The duo broke up around 1963, and Ira Louvin died two years later in a car crash.
A private funeral service for Charlie Louvin is scheduled for Jan. 30 in Nashville, Tenn.