Ira Louvin

Induction Year: 1979

Birth Name: Ira Lonnie Loudermilk Louvin
Birth Date: April 21, 1924
Place of Birth: Section, AL
Deceased: June 20, 1965
Place of Death: Jefferson City, MO


"Our compositions are about things that we know and have experienced--they are authentic--which is the main reason for their success."  Charlie Louvin

"The Family Who Prays" because it was our first release on Capitol Records; "Love Thy Neighbor" since it was the first song we sang in 1955 on the Opry. "When I Stop Dreaming" because it was our first non gospel release on Capitol Records and it hit much to Ken Nelson's (their producer) surprise. There are 300 more songs and maybe some of them are better than the ones I've listed."-- Charlie Louvin on favorite songs

Former Occupations:
Postal work
Cotton mill workers

Grade School--Springhill, AL (1930s)
Grade School--Ider, AL (Charlie)

Discography / Career Highlights

Career Milestones:

1940--first paid performance for the brothers on July 4
early 1940s--won a talent contest in Chattanooga; first prize was an appearance on a radio program on station WDEF
1941--professional performing debut in Flatrock, AL
1941--started writing songs
1942--landed their own radio show on WDEF, appearing under their first stage name, The Radio Twins
1943--worked with the Foggy Mountain Boys in Chattanooga
1945--landed a job with the Happy Valley Boys on WDOD (Chattanooga, TN)
1945--began writing more seriously
1947--first known as the Louvin Brothers (on WROL in Knoxville)
1947--performed on WNOX (Knoxville) regular program, "Mid-Day Merry-Go-Round"
1947--Ira made first commercial recordings with Charlie Monroe and his Kentucky Partners; cut four sides for RCA Victor (while Charlie was in the army)
1948--signed publishing contract with Acuff-Rose
1949--first recorded for Decca
1949-1950--recorded for MGM Records
1946-1950--worked with promoter Eddie Hill in Memphis; had a profound influence on the brothers' career
early 1951--signed recording deal with MGM
1952--began recording for Capitol
1955--moved to Nashville
1955--joined the Grand Ole Opry on February 28
1956--first #1 hit, "I Don't Believe You've Met My Baby"
1963--brothers started working separately; last date they played together was on August 18 in Watseka, IL (on a bill with Ray Price)


1991--Alabama Music Hall of Fame induction

2001--Country Music Hall of Fame induction

Catalog Highlights:

"The Family Who Prays (Never Shall Part)" - Artists: Louvin Brothers

"Love Thy Neighbor as Thy Self" - Artists: Louvin Brothers

"I Don't Believe You Met My Baby" - Artists: Louvin Brothers (1956)

"Hoping That You're Hoping" - Artists: Louvin Brothers (1956)

"Are You Teasing Me" - Artists: Louvin Brothers, Carl Smith, Jean Shepard

"When I Stop Dreaming" - Artists: Louvin Brothers (1955), Emmylou Harris, Ray Charles

"My Baby's Gone" - Artists: Louvin Brothers (1958)

"Cash On the Barrelhead" -Artists: Louvin Brothers (1956)

"Everytime You Leave" - Artists: Louvin Brothers, Emmylou Harris, Jim & Jesse

"Weapon of Prayer" - Artists: Louvin Brothers, Goodman Family, Mark Knopfler

"There's a Higher Power" - Artists: Louvin Brothers, Martha Carson, Jerry & Jeff Easter

"Born Again" - Artists: Louvin Brothers, Sullivan Family, Pat Boone

"Seven Year Blues" - Artists: Louvin Brothers, Jim & Jesse, Bill Monroe

"Alabama" - Co-writer: Eddie Hill, Artists: Louvin Brothers, Jim & Jesse

"If I Could Only Win Your Love" - Artists: Louvin Brothers, Emmylou Harris

"I See a Bridge" - Artists: Louvin Brothers, Charlie Louvin

"Red Hen Boogie" - Artists: McCormick Brothers

"I'm Changing the Words to My Love Song Of You" - Artists: Louvin Brothers

"The Get Acquainted Waltz" - Artists: Louvin Brothers

"Do You Live What You Preach"

"I'll Live With God (To Die No More)" - Co-writer: Eddie Hill

"Robe of White" - Co-writer: Eddie Hill

"The Great Atomic Power" - Co-writer: Buddy Bain

"God Bless Her ('Cause She's My Mother)" -Co-writer: Eddie Hill

"No One to Sing For Me" - Co-writer: Eddie Hill

"A Tiny Broken Heart" - Co-writer: Eddie Hill

"Gonna Shake Hands With Mother Over There" - Artists: Charlie Monroe

"I'm Gonna Love You One More Time" - Artists: Johnnie and Jack

"Are You Missing Me" - Artists: Jim & Jesse

"I Take the Chance"

"Robe of White"

"They've Got the Church Outnumbered"

"You'll Be Rewarded Over There"

"Insured Beyond the Grave"

"I'll Take the Chance"

"How's the World Treating You"

"The Gospel Way"

"The Sons and Daughters Of God"

"Broad Minded"

"I Know What You're Talking About"

"Let Us Travel, Travel On"

"I Love God's Way of Living"

"Preach the Gospel"

"From Mother's Arms to Korea"
"If We Forget God"

"Satan and the Saint"

"Satan Lied to Me"

"Make Him a Soldier"

"I Can't Say No"

"Just Rehearsing"

"Where Will You Build"

"Pray For Me"

"Childish Love"

"In the Middle of Nowhere"

"That's All He's Asking Of Me"

"Last Chance to Pray"

"Plenty of Everything But You"

"The New Partner Waltz"

"Steal Away and Pray"

"There's No Excuse"


"Call Me"

"I Wish You Know"

"When I Loved You"

"She Didn't Even Know I Was Gone"

"My Baby Came Back"

"Are You Wasting My Time"


"I Wish it Had Been a Dream"

"While You're Cheating On Me"

"You're Learning"

"My Heart Was Trampled On the Street"

"On My Way To The Show"

"Red Hen Hop"

"She Will Get Lonesome"

"The Angels Rejoiced Last Night"

"The Christian Life"

"Are You Afraid To Die"

"The Drunkard's Doom"

"Just Suppose"

"The Stagger"

"Nellie Moved To Town"

"Ruby's Song"

"It's Christmas Time"

"Santa's Big Parade"

"If You Love Me, Stay Away"

"I Ain't Gonna Work Tomorrow"

"I Love You Best Of All"

"I Can't Keep You In Love With Me"

"Scared of the Blues"

"Keep Your Eyes On Jesus"

"I Feel Better Now"

"If Today Was the Day"

"You'll Meet Him In the Clouds"

"Broken Engagement"

"The First Time In Life"

"There Is No Easy Way"

"I'm Glad That I'm Not Him"

"A Message to Your Heart"

"Thank God For My Christian Home"


Have won 2 Grammies, received the "Living Legend" award from the Major Independent Record Labels, and have received more than 12 BMI performance awards

"Alabama" is the state song of Alabama


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