Kitty Wells, 1919–2012

Recording Academy Lifetime Achievement Award recipient dies at 92
  • Photo: Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
    Kitty Wells
July 16, 2012 -- 3:33 pm PDT
GRAMMY.com

Kitty Wells, 1919–2012
Recording Academy Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Kitty Wells died July 16 in Nashville. A cause of death was not revealed. She was 92. Considered the Queen of Country Music, Wells was born Ellen Muriel Deason in Nashville. She released several Top 10 Billboard Country Albums throughout the '60s, including The Kitty Wells Story (1964), Lonesome Sad And Blue (1965), Burning Memories (1965), Country All The Way (1966), and Queen Of Honky Tonk Street (1968). Her biggest hit came in 1961 with "Heartbreak U.S.A.," which reached No. 1 on Billboard's Country Singles chart. Wells was awarded the Academy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1991. Other honors include an induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame.

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