Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Longtime Grand Ole Opry Member Holly Dunn Passes Away At 59

2016 claimed yet another country music star as it was announced late last night that singer and former Grand Ole Opry member Holly Dunn passed away at the age of 59 from ovarian cancer.

Born in San Antonio in 1957, Holly Dunn’s first taste of country music success was as a songwriter and a co-write called "Out of Sight, Not Out of Mind" which was recorded by Cristy Lane. At the time, she hadn’t even graduated from college. But that early success led Dunn to head to Nashville after she finished college. Dunn worked as a demo singer for several labels before joining her brother as a staff songwriter at CBS. She continued a strong songwriter’s initiative while pursuing her own record deal including penning Louise Mandrell’s “I’m Not Through Loving You Yet” top ten hit.

In 1985, Holly Dunn landed a record contract in her own right with MTM Records (Mary Tyler Moore), and released her first single The first three singles barely dented the Billboard charts, but the fourth time was a charm. Her 1986 release, “Daddy’s Hands” became her first Top Ten hit and would become her most recognized and trademark song of her career. 1987's Cornerstone produced three top ten singles in "Love Someone Like Me,” "Only When I Love," and “Strangers Again.” That began a six year run where few artists were producing as many radio-friendly hits as Dunn. During that window, she had two number ones including "Are You Ever Gonna Love Me" and "You Really Had Me Going." Dunn was invited to become an Opry member and was even the host of the TNN television show, Opry Backstage, in 2000 and 2001. 

But shortly thereafter, in 2003 to be exact, Holly abruptly announced her retirement from her musical career to pursue her other passion, art. On her website, she explains, “Early in my music career, I made a little promise to myself that if time and circumstances allowed, I would someday pursue my passion for making art.  I am truly thrilled to now be a full time professional artist living and working in the great Southwest that I love, and love to paint!”

1 comment:

  1. Wow, Sorry to hear Holly passed away. We're losing too many Opry Stars. Rest in Peace Holly.