Grand Ole Opry Member Ernie Ashworth Dies

Grand Ole Opry member Ernie Ashworth died Monday (March 2) at age 80. Best known for his recording “Talk Back Trembling Lips,” a No. 1 country hit in 1963, he had been an Opry member since 1964 and was inducted into the Alabama Music Hall of Fame in 1992. A native of Huntsville, Ala., Ashworth began his musical career as a performer on local radio station WBHP. He signed to Acuff-Rose Publications, the Nashville music publisher, and found success as a songwriter during the ’50s with songs recorded by Little Jimmy Dickens, Carl Smith, Johnny Horton and others. He found little success as a recording artist during the ’50s and eventually returned to Huntsville. However, after signing with Decca Records in 1960, Ashworth scored Top 10 hits “Each Moment (Spent With You)” and “You Can’t Pick a Rose in December.” He found his greatest success on Hickory Records, charting four Top 10 singles in addition to “Talk Back Trembling Lips,” which spent 36 weeks on the chart. Ashworth appeared in the 1965 film, The Farmer’s Other Daughter, which also featured the Kentucky Colonels bluegrass band. In later years, Ashworth continued to tour and perform on the Opry while owning AM radio stations in Ardmore, Tenn., and Gallatin, Tenn.