LifeNotes: Nashville Edition Founder Delores Dinning

Delores Dinning Edgin

Delores Dinning Edgin

Prolific Music City session singer Delores Dinning Edgin passed away on Wednesday, June 17 at age 86.

As a founding member of the backup vocal group The Nashville Edition, she sang on thousands of country recordings of the 1960s and 1970s. The group was also the “house” harmonizers with the staff band on TV’s Hee Haw for 25 years.

She was one of nine children born into a musical farm family who worked in Kentucky, Kansas and Oklahoma in the 1920s and 1930s. Older sister Marvis became a singer with the Freddy Owen Orchestra. In 1939, the Dinnings moved to Chicago to further the ambitions of her other siblings.

Sisters Lucille (Lou) Dinning and twins Eugenia (Jean) and Virginia (Ginger) formed The Dinning Sisters and became members of the cast of the National Barn Dance on Chicago’s WLS radio station in 1941. They began making hit records for Capitol in 1945. Lou quit the act in 1945, and teenager Delores began filling in as a Dinning Sister in 1949.

She moved to Nashville and became a hugely successful studio singer. She also filled in as one of the LaDell Sisters on the Grand Ole Opry in the 1950s. Little brother Mark Dinning became another family success when he had the giant pop hit “Teen Angel” (written by sister Jean Dinning) in 1960.

Delores Dinning Edgin’s work in The Nashville Edition kept her constantly busy for approximately 30 years in Nashville studios. In 1980, she helped to form the Music City Christian Fellowship. This is the organization that stages the gospel service/show at the close of the annual Fan Fair / CMA Music Festival celebrations. She resided in Springfield, Tenn.

Delores is preceded in death by her parents and all eight of her siblings. She is survived by her husband of 53 years, Bill Edgin, as well as by daughter Lea Ann Gallardo, son Tracy Edgin and grandson Michael Edgin.

Visitation will take place at Anderson & Garrett Funeral Home in Joelton on Saturday, June 20, from 10 a.m. until the funeral service at 3 p.m. Interment will follow at Orlinda Cemetery.


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Category: Artist, Featured, Obituary

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Robert K. Oermann is a longtime contributor to MusicRow. He is a respected music critic, author and historian.

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