FARON YOUNG, FORTY-THREE YEARS AGO: On Sunday, December 6, 1964, The Nashville Tennessean headline announced, "Opry Drops 12 Top Stars." The caption under Faron's photo, one of four on the front page, said "Opry favorite." The other eight photos appeared inside the paper. The WSM public relations director called it "just a routine thing" to periodically drop performers who failed to meet the Opry requirement of 26 shows per year. He insisted the decision was a mutual agreement between WSM and the entertainers themselves. But the unprecedented mass firing caught the performers by surprise. Faron said he had been told he would be retained even though his touring schedule kept him from making the required number of shows. But, he recalled, "So the next day the paper come out, and there I was in there." A few weeks later, WSM invited everyone back. Although some of the stars eventually returned to the Opry, Faron and others did not. Opry membership provided name recognition and a status symbol but negligible dollars. Saturday nights were lucrative show dates everywhere except the Opry.
Tom Lipscombe sends this information about Faron's name: "Francais: Dans la Bible, six rois égyptiens sont appelés Pharaon. Translation: In the Bible six Egyptian kings are called PHARAON, which is pronounced Faron." Tom says, "I guess that Faron Young, being from Louisiana, could have something to do with his French/Spanish name." Another source says, "The boy's name Faron \f(a)-ron\ is pronounced fah-ROHN. It is of Spanish origin, and its meaning is pharaoh."
Liz Anderson says, "Casey and I are so sorry we missed your book signing and the Faron Tribute but I just couldn't make it. I understand you had a great time with his old friends of which we are two of them. In fact, we are now finally in the process of re-releasing the song we put out with Faron 25 years ago - called "ARE YOU HUNGRY? EAT YOUR IMPORT!" This time it will be out on our SHOWBOAT RECORDS label on Jan 1 of 2008 - and a mini CD will be available from our website after that. Several other places will carry it too - www.showboatrecords.com. We did a full Union session 25 years ago but the song was ahead of its time - now people are aware of the fact we need to BUY AMERICAN so we know Faron would enjoy having it out again at a better time. He does such a great job on the song plus the other 3 from the session."
John Berryman, MSgt Ret. (USAF), writes, "You did a superb job on Faron Young, the book was excellent. Hope you do one on Johnny Paycheck or Buck Owens. Keep up the good work."
Bobbe Seymour of Steel Guitar Nashville regrets missing the Deputy reunion. He says, "The boys are still talking about the reunion and how great it was, it seems that a lot of guys were very happy that this great event took place. Many stated that they wish it would happen again. . . . I just hope that silly Faron is looking down at us and is knowing how much we appreciated his talent, big heart, craziness and the great respect he gave us, his musicians. I miss him more today than I can believe. You know he was good to us, look how long many of us worked for him! Cootie, 26 years? What a great guy, but he didn't want us to know it at times! I still have to laugh at some of his antics, he left me with some of my greatest Nashville memories."
More from Tom Lipscombe: "Faron would have a good laugh on this one........ I found out there actually was a 'Saint Faron' in France, sometime around 670 AD. Here is an article from Wikipedia which mentions him. I have taken the liberty of translating it for you. 'Life of Saint Faron. The first to speak about Fiacre is a bishop of Meaux, Hildegaire, which began during the reign of Charles the Bald, probably around 870. He composed a lengthy biography of his predecessor Saint Faron, who died two centuries before. In chapters 97-99 of his story, it tells us that Faron was in high reputation amongst Celtic monks (the Scots), which were pilgrimaging then through Gaul. He gladly welcomed them in his diocese and he never hesitated to make them benefit from his generosity.'"