Born in Florida but raised in Tennessee, Pam Tillis is a country music superstar and survivor. She made her Grand Ole Opry debut at eight, growing up the daughter of country legend Mel Tillis. By 12, Tillis was playing piano and guitar. After a severe car accident at 16, she underwent several years of surgeries including facial reconstruction. After enrolling at the University of Tennessee, Tillis was in two bands – a jug band and a folk duo with musician Ashley Cleveland. She moved back to Nashville a few years later to work for her dad’s publishing company and ventured to Los Angeles to play in jazz and rock bands. After a songwriter night at the Bluebird Café, Tillis was signed to her first record deal and the rest are years filled with hit songs, gold and platinum albums, awards and even songs recorded by the likes of Gloria Gaynor, Chaka Khan, Emmy Lou Harris, Dolly Parton and Linda Ronstadt. In 1994, she won the Country Music Association Female Vocalist of the Year – and has won a CMA award for a duet with George Jones. Along the way, she took up acting, appearing on several television series and Broadway. In 2000, she was asked to become a member of the Grand Ole Opry. Today, Tillis has her own record label and just scored more critical acclaim with an album of duets with fellow Opry member Lorrie Morgan.
Tennessee Vacation eGuide
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