On Friday night (Sept. 8), the Brothers Osborne slipped a tribute to the recently deceased Don Williams into their show in Athens, Ohio. Readers can press play above to watch the duo cover Williams' hit "Tulsa Time."

Released as a single in 1978, "Tulsa Time" became Williams’ eighth No. 1 on the country charts. The song was written by Danny Flowers and has been covered by Eric Clapton and Reba McEntire, among others.

Williams was 78 years old when he died on Friday following a brief illness. After making a name for himself in folk music as a member of the Pozo Seco Singers, Williams found his way to Nashville. By 1971, he had earned a songwriting contract, and the following year, he signed with JMI Records. Williams debuted on the country charts in 1973, with “The Shelter of Your Eyes,” the same year in which he released his first album, Don Williams Volume One. In 1974, Williams earned his first No. 1 song, “I Wouldn’t Want to Live If You Didn’t Love Me.”

From 1974 through 1991, all of Williams’ singles landed in the Top 40 on the Billboard country charts. He was named Male Vocalist of the Year at the CMA Awards in 1978, and in 2010, Williams became a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame.

In March of 2016, Williams announced his retirement; the 6-foot-1 singer was forced to cancel his 2016 tour due to an unexpected hip replacement surgery, which likely played a part in his decision to retire. Williams most recently released a new album, Reflections, in 2014 and spent much of 2015 on the road.

In 2017, Williams was the subject of a tribute album, Gentle Giants: The Songs of Don Williams. The disc features Lady Antebellum and Garth Brooks, among many others.

Funeral arrangements for Williams are pending.

Country Artists Who Have Died in 2017

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