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Travis, Merle

Sixteen Tons - Travis, Merle (Hardcover)

Sixteen Tons - Travis, Merle (Hardcover)

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Sixteen Tons is the true story of Country Music Hall of Fame member Merle Travis, a brilliant, multi-talented and deeply troubled artist who is widely considered a genius. A world-class guitarist who dazzled audiences with his Kentucky thumb-picking style that came to be known as "Travis-picking," Merle was also a pioneering country songwriter who wrote such classics as "Divorce Me C.O.D.," "So Round, So Firm, So Fully Packed," "Dark as a Dungeon," and "Sixteen Tons." Additionally, he was responsible for early electric guitar innovations in the 1940s, and was a gifted actor, writer, and cartoonist, among many other talents. This definitive portrait of Travis's life and career is the result of a recently-discovered treasure trove of Merle's unpublished autobiographical writings, which have been fleshed out with an immersive deep-dive biography by researcher and musical historian Deke Dickerson. Sixteen Tons details the highs of a career that began with a string of nine straight Top 5 singles in the 1940s, and the lows of a lifelong struggle with alcoholism that developed into an addiction to pills that nearly killed Merle when he was running with Johnny Cash in the late 1950s. Travis ultimately reemerged to become a Grammy-winning artist who inspired millions with his creative stage presence and unparalleled guitar recordings. A unique hybrid of posthumous memoir and unflinching biographical study, Sixteen Tons is the long overdue final word on the life and career of an inimitably talented American music legend.

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