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Anita Carter

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Title: Anita Carter  
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Subject: The Carter Sisters, Waylon Jennings, Nashville Rebel (box set), Can the Circle Be Unbroken (By and By), Never Could Toe the Mark (song)
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Anita Carter

Anita Carter
Background information
Birth name Ina Anita Carter
Born (1933-03-31)March 31, 1933
Maces Spring, Virginia
Died July 29, 1999(1999-07-29) (aged 66)
Hendersonville, Tennessee
Genres country, folk
Occupation(s) singer-songwriter
Instruments Bass, vocals
Labels RCA Victor, Cadence, Columbia, Audiograph, United Artists, Liberty, Capitol
Associated acts Carter Family, The Carter Sisters, Johnny Cash, Hank Snow, Waylon Jennings

Ina Anita Carter (March 31, 1933 – July 29, 1999), the youngest daughter of Ezra and Mother Maybelle Carter, was a versatile American singer who experimented with several different types of music and played upright bass with her sisters Helen Carter and June Carter Cash as The Carter Sisters. The trio joined the Grand Ole Opry radio show in 1950 (Anita was 17 years old at the time), opened shows for Elvis Presley, and joined The Johnny Cash Show in 1971. As a solo artist, and with her family, Carter recorded for a number of labels including RCA Victor, Cadence, Columbia, Audiograph, United Artists, Liberty and Capitol.


Born in Maces Spring, Virginia, she scored two Top Ten hits in 1951 with "Down The Trail of Achin' Hearts" with Hank Snow at No. 2 and "Blue Bird Island" at No. 4. She reached the Top Ten again in 1968 with "I Got You" with Waylon Jennings at No. 4. Other solo releases charted as well. Carter recorded two folk albums in the 1960s. In 1962, she recorded a song co-written by her sister June and Merle Kilgore called "Love's Ring Of Fire".

After hearing the record, her future brother-in-law, Johnny Cash, reportedly dreamed of hearing Mexican horns on the record and told Anita that if her song did not hit in five or six months he would record it "the way I feel about it." After the song failed to make the charts, Cash recorded it as "Ring Of Fire" in March 1963 with the horns and the Carter Sisters (along with Mother Maybelle). The revised song went on to gain wide international popularity and became one of the biggest hits of his career. She appears in a video clip, currently on YouTube, in a duet with Hank Williams, of his song 'I Can't Help It'.


Carter married fiddler Dale Potter in 1950 (they later divorced), session musician Don Davis in 1953 (divorced and then re-married), and Bob Wootton (lead guitarist for Johnny Cash's band The Tennessee Three) in 1974 (divorced). She had two children, Lorrie Frances and Jay Davis.


Carter suffered from rheumatoid arthritis for many years, and the drugs used to treat it severely damaged her pancreas, kidneys, and liver. She died on July 29, 1999, at the age of 66,[1] a year after eldest sister Helen and four years before middle sister June. She was under hospice care at the home of Johnny and June Carter Cash in Hendersonville, Tennessee.

Her interment was in Hendersonville Memory Gardens in Hendersonville, Tennessee.

Albums Label Date
Together Again (with Hank Snow) RCA Victor LSPLSP - 2580 Nov. 1962
Folk Songs Old and New Mercury SR - 60770 Dec. 1962
Anita Carter of the Carter Family Mercury SR - 60847 Feb. 1964
So Much Love Capitol ST - 11075 1972
Yesterday House Of Cash HOC - 1000 1995
Appalachian Angel: Her Recordings 1950-1972 & 1996 Bear Family June 22, 2004


  1. ^ Anita Carter Page in Fuller Up, The Dead Musicians Directory
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