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Sunday, October 07, 2012

Halloween Hits: "Phantom 309" Red Sovine (1967)

The single was originally released on this Starday label. It has also appeared on COUNTLESS trucker music compilation albums on Starday sister labels Gusto and Power Pak in the '70s

"Phantom 309" went to #9 on the country charts in 1967-68. It was also re-released in 1975 shortly after C.W. McCall's "Convoy" launched the CB radio/trucker craze

Red Sovine was a journeyman country singer who recorded for several labels, including RCA Victor and Decca with little success. But he soon became best known for his sentimental spoken word stories, mostly focused around long haul truckers and their families. It's with this niche did Sovine (and Starday/Gusto/Power Pak Records) find their greatest fan base.

In 1976, he released his best known single "Teddy Bear" It was also Sovine's only pop Top 40 hit, just entering for one week at #40.

"Phantom 309" is also parodied by an act called Red Bovine, who released "The Phantom Wind Breaker" in 1977 and was featured heavily on Dr. Demento's radio program and a few of Dr. Demento's album compilations..

Red Sovine died in 1980 while suffering a massive heart attack that caused him to swerve off the road and crash into a tree. He was 61. 

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