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Who was Tom T Hall's wife? The pair were country music's power couple

Yasmine Leung January 6, 2022
Who was Tom T Hall's wife? The pair were country music's power couple

An autopsy into the death last year of country music songwriter Tom T Hall has reignited fans’ interest in his life, family and wife, Rolling Stone reports.

Tom T Hall, the mastermind behind Jeannie C Riley hit Harper Valley PTA, passed away on 20 August 2021 and an autopsy by Williamson County Medical Examiner has now ruled the cause of death was suicide. He was 85.

At the time, his death was announced by his son, Dean Hall. According to a medical report obtained by country music blog Saving Country Music, which first published news of the musician’s passing: “A 911 call was placed at 11:15 hours on 8/20/2021. Paramedics confirmed death at approximately 11:33 hours, due to obvious injuries.”

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Meet Tom T Hall’s wife Dixie

Tom T Hall’s wife was Dixie – famously known as Dixie Dean. Born Iris Lawrence (1934) in West Midlands, UK, she was a bluegrass songwriter who moved to Nashville in 1961 aged 27.

She wrote Dave Dudley’s hit Truck Drivin’ Son-Of-A Gun, which led her to meeting future husband Hall in 1964 at the BMI Country Awards.

They married three years later and lived in Franklin, Tennessee, until her death on 16 January 2015 following a lengthy illness, as reported by The Country Daily.

As a renowned songwriter, Dean contributed to more than 500 songs – more than any other female writer in the bluegrass genre. Like her husband, she wrote for Johnny Cash (Troublesome Waters) and the couple were responsible for Miranda Lambert’s All That’s Left in 2014.

The talented duo dominated the country scene. Dean received the Distinguished Achievement Award from the International Bluegrass Music Association. Together, the pair took home ten consecutive Songwriters Of The Year awards from the Preservation Of Bluegrass Music Of America.

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Who is Tom T Hall’s son?

Hall has a son, Dean Todd Hall, born to his first wife Opal Inez McKinney in 1961.

Tom and Opal married on 16 February 1961, although it’s unknown when they officially split.

Dean Hall was raised by his mother and only knew about his famous father in 1971, when a classmate sang Harper Valley PTA at the school talent show and a teacher asked him whether he was aware his father wrote the song.

Before learning about his heritage, Hall was already interested in music, having gained inspiration from Johnny Cash and Jimi Hendrix.

He went on to tour with his father as lead guitarist and eventually left to play for Bobby Bare’s band.

Hall now plays his own blues rock music and the occasional cover. The artist released his third album, Hallowed Ground, in 2017.

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Yasmine is a third-year Anthropology and Media student at Goldsmiths University with a new obsession with League of Legends, despite being really bad. She's always on social media keeping on top of the latest news and trends and is HITC’s expert in Korean pop culture. She also loves music, TV and fashion - her favourite things to write about.