One of country's most
enduring songwriters, Dallas Frazier was born on October 27, 1939, in Spiro, OK.
Raised in Bakersfield, CA, he was skilled on a number of musical instruments by
the age of 12; while still in his teens, he became a featured member of Ferlin
Husky's band, cutting his first solo single, "Space Command," in 1954. Soon
after, he was named a regular on the Hometown Jamboree program.
When Hometown Jamboree was canceled at the end of the decade, he moved to Nashville to work as a songwriter, composing Husky's 1964 hit "Timber I'm Falling." Two years later, his career caught fire; in addition to releasing his own debut album, Elvira, he penned three huge hits — Jack Greene's "There Goes My Everything," Connie Smith's "Ain't Had No Lovin'," and George Jones' "I'm a People." In addition to supplying more hits for Jones, Greene, and Smith, his compositions were recorded by the likes of Willie Nelson, Brenda Lee, Charley Pride, and Merle Haggard, who included three Frazier songs on his 1968 LP The Legend of Bonnie & Clyde.
Together with other
professional writers like Sanger D. "Whitey" Shafer, Bob McDill and Wayland
Holyfield, Frazier became one of Nashville's most sought-after writers,
composing hits for Elvis Presley, Moe Bandy, Roy Head, Rodney Crowell, and
Ronnie Hawkins. In 1972, he joined Connie Smith for three cuts on her LP If It
Ain't Love (& Other Great Dallas Frazier Songs).
Frazier's songs continued to hit the charts well into the 1980s; his "Elvira" was a tremendous crossover smash for the Oak Ridge Boys, while Emmylou Harris topped the charts with "Beneath Still Waters." Even younger artists like George Strait, Randy Travis, and Patty Loveless found success with his compositions. In 1988, however, Frazier retired from songwriting, leaving Nashville to pursue a career in the ministry.