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Donnie Fritts


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Born in Florence, Alabama in 1942, Donnie Fritts began his career as a musician at the age of 15, playing drums and keyboard.

In 1965 Fritts began writing songs and had songs recorded by Ray Charles, Jerry Lee Lewis, Willie Nelson and others.

As a songwriter, Donnie’s songs were performed and appeared on the national charts by Charlie Rich (You’re Gonna Love Yourself In the Morning’ (1980), Dolly Parton (We Had It All-1986), and Waylon Jennings (We Had It All-1973).

In 1967, Fritts began playing keyboards for Kris Kristofferson, also a Florence, Alabama native, a relationship that spanned 20 years and in locations both nationally and internationally.

Donnie appeared in several movies with Kris Kristofferson, including ‘The Last Years of Frank and Jesse James’ (1986-TV), ‘Songwriter’ (1984), ‘Convoy’(1978), and ‘A Star is Born’ (1976), and two other Sam Peckinpah’s movies in addition to ‘Convoy’; ‘Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid’ (1973) and ‘Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia’ (1974).

In 1998, Donnie released an album ‘Everybody’s Got A Song’ which includes guest appearances by Willie Nelson, Tony Joe White, and Kris Kristofferson and John Prine, as well as many others.

In 2001, Fritts had a kidney transplant that closely followed seven heart operations.

While he was recovering in the hospital after the transplant, a friend asked how he was doing. Fritts responded that he had “one foot in the groove.” It became the title of a CD in 2008.

On February 22, 2008, Kristofferson was on hand in Montgomery, Alabma to induct Donnie into the Alabama Music Hall of Fame.


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