Guitarist Hank Garland Dies

Hank Garland, a studio guitarist who played the opening notes on Patsy Cline’s “I Fall to Pieces,” among many other hits from the 1950s, died in Orange Park, Fla., on Monday (Dec. 27). He was 74. Garland rose to fame playing for Opry members Paul Howard and Cowboy Copas, toured in Eddy Arnold’s band and soloed on Red Foley’s hit “Sugarfoot Rag.” In the 1950s, Garland was one of Nashville’s leading studio guitarists, recording with the Everly Brothers and Elvis Presley, and he appeared in Presley’s 1961 Farewell Concert filmed in Honolulu. He also co-created (with Billy Byrd) the Byrdland electric guitar for Gibson in 1954 and recorded a jazz album in 1960. His career was cut short following a 1961 car accident, which left him unable to play at a professional level. He later claimed it was sabotage from someone in the record industry.