Becky Brown Talks about Her Life with Jim Ed Brown | No Depression
After all this Jim Ed/Helen success started, the Cornelius's started coming . I now understand your relationships and hope you and Mr. Brown. INTERVIEW SPOTLIGHT featuring legendary country and pop singer Jim Ed Brown, including Then in , he released a string of major duet hits with Helen Cornelius starting with the .. wondering how that special relationship went sour. Jim Ed Brown was a Country Music Hall of Fame inductee and a " Nashville on the Road," began to record duets with Helen Cornelius.
After his discharge, he rejoined his sisters to record the song which would leave an indelible mark on musical history. It was the very first number one country hit that also went number one on the pop charts and the rhythm and blues charts, right? You were hardly an overnight success, but suddenly this was the first time that everyone, it seemed, started hearing about you. What was this like? Our lives were pretty much turned upside down.
I was heading off to college. The two girls were planning to start families. We were planning to quit the business. We just figured that it was all over, and it had been fun while it lasted. No one really expected it to take off like that.
It was a fun time. It was one of those things that none of us planned.
An Affair To Remember | Collie's Corner
Suddenly it was the song being played and sung everywhere. From getting ready to quit the business, you were suddenly the hottest act around. How did that feel? Looking back, it happened so quickly and overwhelmed us. Everything up to that point had prepared us for some things, but not this.
It must have been quite a learning experience… JEB: We had some more very good records. By that time the girls were married and having children. We just liked making music. We sure have some great memories of that time. We went to England and played some of the big stadiums there, then on to Germany and Japan. We did quite a bit of television in a lot of different countries. When we did meet the right people, we were in such awe of them—all the major stars that we had heard about through the years.
Apparently there were quite a few in awe of you, as well.
I guess, but we just felt like plain ole country folks. RCA, our record company, wanted us to become a pop act.
We went to Hollywood and got the total makeover. They taught us how to dance.
They put a show together for us. They put all the arrangements together. We kept having more hits, but we felt like fish out of water. You can take the kids out of Arkansas, but… JEB: By then your sisters decided to concentrate on their families.
Where did that leave you? Thankfully, I started having some records that were received well, and that helped make the transition. DuringJim Ed's unmistakable warm baritone skyrocketed to the top of the country charts with one of the best "crying in my beer" songs of all time.
Suddenly people throughout the country were singing along with the now-classic words that paid homage to everyone who has ever slid into a bar stool while wondering how that special relationship went sour: Pop a top again I've just got time for one more round Set 'em up, my friend Then I'll be gone and you can let some other fool sit down. ByErnie Fraze had built a modestly successful enterprise with clients including General Electric, Ford, Chrysler and NASA, but his most lucrative invention was still to come, an breakthrough that would directly affect Jim Ed Brown's singing career in a most amazing way.
That year, while at a picnic with family and friends, Fraze realized he had forgotten to bring an opener for the canned beverages so he was forced to use a car bumper to pry them open everyone alive back then has his or her own "forget the opener" war stories that usually involved something sharp such as screwdrivers, knives, rocks Anyway, Ernie's bumper incident got him thinking of possible solutions to the problem that would eliminate the need for him to have to remember a can opener in the future.Jim Ed Brown-Lying In Love With You
He later sold his invention to Alcoa. Aluminum pop-top cans soon hit the market. Iron City Beer first used the new design.
- Becky Brown Talks about Her Life with Jim Ed Brown
- Is Helen Cornelius married?
Other beer and beverage companies quickly followed suit. Bynearly 75 percent of all U. More importantly, a new phrase, "pop a top" was coined and popularized in various forms for years to come. Ironically, in the mid's, outcry from environmentalists lead to the development of the can-tops we know today that use non-removable tabs, but not before Jim Ed Brown struck a musical gold mine with the song that would have never been written without Ernie Fraze's invention.
Thank goodness it came along when it did. I was to the point that I was afraid I was going to have to go back into the sawmill business again! The biz, as they call it, is littered with so-called one-hit wonders. There are a lot of people who become self-destructive or shoot themselves in the foot when even one of the great things come along that happened in your life.
What made the difference for you? I think my family and my faith kept me grounded. All I knew to do was just keep working harder and harder. I just believe that when one door closes, the good Lord opens another.
There always seemed to be a door opening at the right time. All I had to do was walk in. I had a lot of help. It was a lot of people helping me. Bill Graham the iconic West Coast concert promoter was one. Jane Dowden talented record producer was another. Chet Atkins legendary guitarist and record producer was there in so many ways. You have also mentioned many times about the influence Jim Reeves had in your life. We headed to Hollywood instead of Nashville.
Split from Their Spouses, Jim Ed Brown & Helen Cornelius Sing of Guilt with New Passion
That was a mistake, but it all seemed to work out in the end. You talk openly about your faith… JEB: What would I do without the Lord? Has it always been that way, or did that come along later? It was always important since I was a child. You wrote some great songs. Why did you stop? Maxine and I wrote quite a few in the early years. We wrote some of our first hits together.
She kept writing, but I just quit. I got more into the business side of everything. It was just the way it went. A six-season run as co-host of the syndicated weekly television series, Nashville On The Road, began infurther enhancing Jim Ed's career and leading to his being selected as a national spokesperson for Dollar General Stores.
Then inJim Ed teamed up with solo artist Helen Cornelius to form one of the most successful recording duos of all time. Riley, Connie Smith and Lynn Anderson. Jim Ed and Helen were named the Country Music Vocal Duo of the Year in and continued to be nominated in this prestigious category for the next three years.
What was it like when you teamed up with Helen Cornelius? All of a sudden we were back on top. It was a whole new career. You had monster hit records with Helen. Was it totally unexpected? Neither of us had any idea it would explode like that. Everything just took off again. Jim Ed and Helen decided to pursue separate directions in though they paired up again for the immensely popular Reunited Tour inand duringJim Ed started working with TNN, the Nashville Network.
Jim Ed still remains with the Grand Ole Opry where he is an audience favorite. And from time to time Opry audiences witness truly magical moments when the sisters reunite with their brother on stage and the Browns are once again together in the spotlight. For many years, she was it in that area for dance lessons.
They had two kids, one of them named "Buster" and that is no lie. Buster was a teenager during this time and his sister, being a year older than me, was about 10 or Helen had been married for many years to Lewis and they had three kids, who at this time, were teenagers. Helen had gorgeous kids. I mean, her two boys and daughter were just plain pretty.
It was really a good record They had a few other big hits and naturally toured together. Jim Ed was pretty doggone succesful during this period. He was very visible in the music thing and in Nashville. Now, I went to the same church as the Browns. We had lots of country music folk at Forest Hills Baptist Church back in those days. It was not odd or unusual to anybody when Helen and her family came there. At some point, Jim Ed and Helen began an affair.
You have to understand, this was before the internet, and even before we had decent cable tv in Nashville.
There was really no such thing as tabloid t. This story played out on the cover of The Tennessean and the late Nashville Banner and on the evening news. It was a humdinger of a mess. When I say "sordid", you have to take into consideration the time period.