Kitty Wells Dies: Country Stars Pay Tribute
Kitty Wells did almost as much for country music as the guitar and fiddle. The Queen of Country died on Monday at the age of 92 after complications from a recent stroke. Wells was not only a major hitmaker in the ’50s and ’60s, but she was the first female country singer with a voice that the mostly male-dominated industry stepped aside and respected.
Her 1952 hit ‘It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels’ was a fiery answer to Hank Thompson’s ‘Wild Side of Life.’ The song was banned for a short time at NBC radio and the Grand Ole Opry, but eventually became the first song from a female artist to top the charts.
Needless to say, women in Nashville today owe Wells a show of gratitude, and many — like Martina McBride, Kellie Pickler and Sunny Sweeney — said thank you on Twitter this week. Men of country, of course, paid tribute to the late singer as well.
Sad to hear of the passing of the Queen of Country, Kitty Wells.
— Martina McBride (@martinamcbride) July 16, 2012
My heart cries over the loss of Ms Kitty Wells. She is and always will be the true Queen of Country Music. — kellie pickler (@kelliepickler) July 16, 2012
A Queen died today.The true Queen of country music,the lady who set the standard for all who followed .Rest in peace Kitty Wells
— Charlie Daniels (@CharlieDaniels) July 16, 2012
We’ve lost another legend, Miss Kitty Wells. Praying for her family, friends and fans. #fb — Rodney Atkins (@RodneyAtkins) July 16, 2012
Deeply saddened to hear of the passing of country music pioneer and Honky Tonk Angel, Kitty Wells. She was a hero to every female singer. <3
— SUNNY SWEENEY (@gettinsweenered) July 16, 2012
Rest In Peace Kitty Wells. The Queen of Country Music.What a great lady. — Chely Wright (@chelywright) July 16, 2012
RIP Ms. Kitty Wells. Thank you for paving the way for country music singin ladies like me. #TrueCountryMusicRoyalty
— Meghan Linsey (@meghanlinsey) July 16, 2012
I knew they made honky tonk angels cause Miss Kitty Wells was one of them for sure. Rest in peace Queen of Country Music! — Heidi Newfield (@heidinewfield) July 16, 2012
One more voice has been added to heavens choir. Kitty Wells, you were a class act who paved the way. God DID, indeed, … say.ly/uME3M9V
— Terri Clark (@TerriClarkMusic) July 17, 2012