One of Music's Greatest Supporters is Gone

PRESCRIPTION BLUEGRASS IMAGE  -  LOUDILLA JOHNSON - TRI SON NEWS  -  INTERNATIONAL FAN CLUB ORGANIZATIONLoudilla Johnson, the last active of the three sisters who founded the International Fan Club Organization died yesterday, May 7th.  Many of her long distance friends didn't even know she was declining as she was never one to complain about her own situation.

Loudilla and her sisters Loretta and Kay  first founded the fan club for then (1963) rising country star, Loretta Lynn and soon discovered there was no organization that coordinated all of the various fan clubs for the stars. 

The three ladies formed the International Fan Club Organization in 1965  and were instrumental in helping thousands of fans and country music stars to make connections.   Country Music's biggest annual celebration, The Country Music Fan Fair (later renamed: CMA Music Festival) was begun from an idea and ground work laid by Loudilla, Loretta and Kay Johnson along with the Coal Miner's Daughter, Loretta Lynn.

PRESCRIPTION BLUEGRASS IMAGE  -  JOHNSON SISTERS   they didn't call em ...The Johnson Gang  for nothing! ...Their interest and reach did not stop with traditional country but extended to its bluegrass relations as well long before there was an International Bluegrass Music Association.

Before there was an Internet or social media, the sisters cranked out a monthly newsletter with anything and everything that had to do with the stars.  Many a disc jockey in those days got their show material from the Johnson sisters' TRI SON News - a mimeographed multi-page newsletter mailed to everyone who belonged to the country music family. 

Of course they eventually converted the newsletter to email delivery but never failed to send the news once each month.  Our last copy arrived here at Prescription Bluegrass in December of 2013 and, looking back, we should have known  that it was just too much to keep up.

Just a couple of months ago, we sent Loudilla a private message about an idea that needed developing and requested her expertise.  Her quick reply just said she'd received the message but was a bit rushed and she would get back with us soon.   Nothing about feeling poorly or unable due to health issues....but that was Loudilla.  Quick to update everyone on her sister Kay's health but never a word about herself. That was the last we heard from her.

Many times we had the opportunity to pick up the phone and give her a call but declined figuring she was busy and would return our inquiry when she was ready.  Regrets are always hard at times like these.

Reporter, Peter Cooper with The Tennessean broke the news of Loudilla's death today.  She was 75.

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