Sunday, March 29th was a sad day for country music when country legend, Joe Diffie passed away at the age of 61. On Friday, he announced that he tested positive for the coronavirus and on Sunday, his family posted that he had passed.

Joe Diffie was one of the reasons I got into country music and remains one of my top 5 favorite all-time country artists. I had the chance to see him two times, in fact, it was on consecutive days.

We did a contest at 98.1 the Hawk for your chance to see him perform at the Allentown Fairgrounds, the opener was an up-and-comer by the name of Keith Urban. Yes, that Keith Urban...I think he has a chance of making it big.

The next day, Joe played at Touch of Texas at their former Johnson City location. I had a chance to chat a little bit with him and one of the comments he made was that he loved the atmosphere that TOT had and that it took him back to his days playing in the honky-tonks.

I thought he played quite a bit longer at Touch of Texas then he did the day before in Allentown. It turned out, I was right. I was talking to one of the band members after the show and he said that they played some songs that they haven't played live in a very long time including Texas Size Heartache.

I asked if there was a particular reason why and he replied that it was the people. So thank you Southern Tier for making a great impression on the man with the Honky Tonk Attitude.

He hasn't had a hit in many years but the country stars of today haven't forgotten him. Chris Young gives him a shoutout in his last hit "Raised on Country." Do you remember Jason Aldean's song "1994?" If you didn't know better, you would think that the song was "Joe, Joe, Joe Diffie."

I remember when that song came out, Jason tried to get something together with Joe but it never worked out. In fact, I wondered then if he wasn't feeling well because he hadn't been touring much either.

His final album came out last year called....wait for it..."Joe, Joe, Joe Diffie." It was 11 re-recorded versions of his hit songs. You will be missed Joe and thank you for your contribution to country music and for making me a fan.

Now, all we have to do is find a jukebox to prop you up beside. Those are my memories of the pickup man, what about you?

RIP JOE!

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