Marty Robbins Born Martin David Robinson near Glendale, Arizona, served in the United States Navy as an LCT coxswain during World War II. To pass the time during the war, he learned to play the guitar, started writing songs, and grew to love Hawaiian music.
After his discharge from the military in 1945, he started playing at local venues in Phoenix, then moved on to host his own radio station show, on KTYL, and ended up with his own television (TV) show on KPHO in Phoenix. After Little Jimmy Dickens made a guest appearance on Robbins' TV show, Dickens got Robbins a record deal with Columbia. He went on to become an immensely popular singing star of the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tennessee.
His musical accomplishments include the first Grammy Award ever awarded for a country song, for his 1959 hit, and signature song, "El Paso". "El Paso" was also the first song to hit #1 on the pop chart in the decade of the 1960's. He won the Grammy Award for the Best Country & Western Recording 1961, for the album More Gunfighter Ballads and Trail Songs, and was awarded the Grammy Award for Best Country Song in 1970, for "My Woman, My Woman, My Wife." Robbins was named "Artist of the Decade" (1960-69) by the Academy of Country Music, was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1982, and was given a Grammy Hall of Fame Award in 1998 for his song "El Paso".
Marty Robbins was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1975 and is an inductee of the Country Music Hall of Fame. For his contribution to the recording industry, Marty Robbins has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6666 Hollywood Blvd.
Between recording songs and touring, Marty Robbins was an avid race car driver, competing in NASCAR with the best stock car drivers in the world including at the Daytona 500.
Marty Robbins died in Nashville on December 8, 1982, due to surgical complications. He was interred in the Woodlawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Nashville.