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Hit Songwriter Ronny Scaife Dies Suddenly

Ronnie Scaife

Country music has lost one of it’s finest, most beloved songwriters. Music Row reports that Ronny Scaife — who penned such hits as ‘The Whiskey Ain’t Workin’ (Marty Stuart and Travis Tritt, 1992) and ‘Hearts Are Gonna Roll’ (Hal Ketchum, 1993) — passed away Wednesday, November 3, after suffering a brain hemorrhage at home in Perry County, Tenn. on October 25. He was life-flighted to Nashville’s St. Thomas Hospital but never regained consciousness. He was only 63.

“He was a gem of a guy,” said Dan Hill of Cal IV Entertainment. “Everybody loved him. He was a great guitarist, a great singer and a great songwriter. He was a good, good man.”

Ronny — whose cousin is Music Row producer, Joe Scaife — is survived by his wife, Brenda, and children Coty, Jake and Nathan. The Ronny Scaife Memorial Fund to assist the family with medical expenses is being set up at Regions Bank.

Some of Ronny’s other notable creations include ‘Me and the I.R.S’ (Johnny Paycheck, 1978), ‘Here’s Your Sign, Get the Picture’ (Bill Engvall and Travis Tritt, 1997), ‘Alabama Clay’ (Garth Brooks, 1989), ‘Old Man River I’ve Come to Talk to You Again’ (Mel McDaniel, 1983), ‘Salt of the Earth’ (Ricky Skaggs and The Whites, 2007) and ‘Lay Something on My Bed Besides a Blanket’ (Charly McClain, 1977).

During his lifetime, Ronny was honored with three BMI awards — for Diamond Rio‘s ‘Wrinkles’ in 2003, Conway Twitty‘s ‘I Couldn’t See You Leavin” in 1991, and Charly McClain’s ‘Men’ in 1980.

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