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RIP Jody Payne Options
Posted: Sunday, August 11, 2013 2:26:56 PM

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Jody Payne, longtime guitarist with Willie Nelson's band, The Family, dies at age 77.

Jody Payne (b. January 11, 1936) was an American country musician and singer. He is best known as a longtime guitarist in Willie Nelson's band, The Family. Payne died August 10, 2013 at a hospital from cardiac problems.

In 1951, Payne went on the road playing bluegrass music with Charlie Monroe for a time. After he returned home, the family moved to Cincinnati, Ohio. He was drafted into the Army in 1958 and served two years. He was discharged in 1960 and, in the spring of 1961, went to Detroit, Michigan and started playing at the West Fort Tavern. He then toured with Merle Haggard. Payne also was on recordings with Hank Snow, Tanya Tucker and Leon Russell.

Payne first met Willie Nelson in about 1962 in Detroit. Nelson was playing bass with Ray Price. Payne started working with Nelson in November 1973 and retired in 2008 from his band.

Payne appeared in television and film including: Monk, Songwriter, Soundstage, Farm Aid '86, '97 and The Tenth Anniversary Concert, Austin City Limits, and Honeysuckle Rose.
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