I've mentioned the Everly Brothers a lot today, thanks to getting to one of their songs as the almost halfway point on my iPod or recommending the tribute album Norah Jones and Billie Joe Armstrong did ("Foreverly"). So here's some Everly Brothers trivia:
1. The Everly Brothers grew up in Central City, Kentucky. It is in Muhlenberg County, the same county that John Prine made famous in the classic song "Paradise."
2. Both Phil and Don did military service in the Marine Corps.
3. Their father, Ike Everly, is honored in Drakesboro, Kentucky, along with Mose Rager, Kennedy Jones and Merle Travis, in the "Four Legends Fountain," signifying the four guitarists, all from the area, who were influential in popularizing a "fingerpicking" style of guitar playing that people such as Chet Atkins used.
4. In the late 1960's the Everly Brothers hired Warren Zevon as their piano player and arranger. He worked with each brother separately once the brothers pursued solo careers. In Zevon's song "Excitable Boy" he mentioned "little Susie," a tribute to the Everlys' hit "Wake Up, Little Susie."
5. The Everly Brothers are inducted in both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (inducted in 1986) and Country Music Hall of Fame (inducted in 2001). Only Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, Chet Atkins, Floyd Cramer, Sam Phillips, Jimmie Rodgers, Bill Monroe, Bob Wills and Hank Williams are in both (the latter four as "early influences on rock and roll" to account for their induction in Cleveland) in addition to the Everlys.
6. Several of the Everly Brothers' hits were written by the husband-and-wife songwriting team Felice and Boudleaux Bryant. Among the other songs they wrote that the Everlys did not record is the bluegrass favorite, "Rocky Top," which serves as the "fight song" for the University of Tennessee.
7. Paul McCartney is a huge fan. He wrote the Everlys' 1984 comeback hit "On the Wings of a Nightingale." McCartney mentioned Phil and Don in the 1976 Wings hit "Let 'Em In."
8. The biggest hit of Nazareth's career, "Love Hurts," was originally a hit for the Everly Brothers.
9. The Everlys received a "Lifetime Achievement" Grammy award in 1997.
10. Don Everly's daughter, Erin, was married to Guns 'n' Roses front man Axl Rose and was the inspiration for the song "Sweet Child o' Mine."
If you don't know the Everly Brothers' music do yourself a favor and find some of their classic hits and discover the terrific harmonies that influenced countless other performers.