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Musicians React to Mel Tillis' Death
20 November 2017, 02:21 | Ruben Stone
Country Music Legend Mel Tillis Passes | Absolute Publicity
Country legend Lonnie Melvin ("Mel") Tillis died this morning in Ocala, Florida, Entertainment Weekly reports.
According to the Tennessean, Tillis died early Sunday morning at the Munroe Regional Medical Center in Ocala, Fla. after nearly two years of ill health stemming from a bout of diverticulitis, for which he received surgery.
The singer-songwriter's publicist Don Murry Grubbs confirmed the tragic news, with his suspected cause of death believed to be respiratory failure. Over the course of his long career, he wrote more than 1,000 songs, recorded more than 60 albums, had almost three dozen top-10 singles, and pegged six No. 1 hits, including "Coca-Cola Cowboy", "I Ain't Never", and "I Believe in You".
He penned the song Coca-Cola Cowboy for the Clint Eastwood movie Every Which Way but Loose back in 1979.
Additionally, Tillis had other hits such as Stateside, I Got the Hoss, Send Me Down to Tucson, Neon Rose, Sawmill and Midnight, Me and the Blues. President Barack Obama bestowed the National Medal of Arts award upon Tillis in 2012.
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