Born in September of 1955 in Nashville, Tennessee, Carlene Carter was born into music. She is the daughter of June Carter and her first husband Carl Smith, and the step-daughter of Johnny Cash. In 1987, Carlene joined the trio, The Carter Sisters, which consisted of her mother June and her sisters Helen and Anita. Before then, Carlene’s solo career started in the late 1970s, when she introduced “Swap-Meat Rag,” a mate-swapping song she released during a concert at New York’s Bottom Line. Her career took off in 1990, however, with the album I Fell in Love. The album and its title song both topped the U.S. country albums and singles charts.
I Fell in Love was one of the first successes of the “neotraditionalist” movement in country music in the 1990s. The album featured a straight-ahead, retro country sound. Carter’s follow-up CD was released three years later, Little Love Letters, and featured “Every Little Thing,” which became one of the top-rated music videos for the year. “I Fell in Love,” “Come On Back” and “Every Little Thing” all reached the Number Three spots on the U.S. Country charts.
She received a Grammy nomination for Best Female Country Vocal Performance for “I Fell in Love” in 1991. Her albums I Fell in Love and Little Love Letters both reached Gold certification in Canada.
Carter has also provided the voice of “Red” in the 1994 Williams pinball machine, Red & Ted’s Road Show, which was designed by Pat Lawlor. When a player would score a jackpot, a clip of her hit “Every Little Thing” was played and a picture of Carter appeared in the backglass artwork.
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