Tennessee Three Guitarist Bob Wootton Dead at 75
Robert “Bob” Clifton Wootton, Johnny Cash's guitarist for nearly three decades, has died. He was 75 years old when he passed away on Sunday (April 9) at 3:30PM, his obituary reports.
Born on March 4, 1942, in Paris, Ark., Wootton joined the United States Army in 1961, following his high school graduation, and served for three years. He was living in Oklahoma City, Okla., and playing gigs in that area when, in September of 1968 -- a few weeks after Cash's lead guitarist Luther Perkins died in a house fire -- Wootton was at an event in Fayetteville, Ark., and offered to fill in for Cash's missing guitarist, Carl Perkins, who was stuck elsewhere due to a flight delay. Days later, Cash asked Wootton to join his band, the Tennessee Three, as its new lead guitarist.
Wootton remained the Tennessee Three's lead guitarist from 1968 until Cash's retirement in 1997; the Tennessee Three continued to tour following Cash's retirement and death in 2003. Wootton's obituary reports that he also enjoyed fishing and watching the Dallas Cowboys play football. Readers can press play above to watch a 2009 interview with Wootton.
Wootton was living in Gallatin, Tenn., when he died; he is survived by Vicky, his wife of 33 years, as well as his daughters, Scarlett Keen and Montana Burgess, and their husbands, Mark and Seth, respectively. A visitation and burial were held on Wednesday (April 12) and Thursday (April 13).
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