Josh Turner Recalls His First Impression of Randy Travis

by Jonathan Howard

Never meet your heroes, that’s what they say, anyway. If your hero is Randy Travis, though, then things are a little different. Just ask Josh Turner. In 2012, the two country music singers teamed up for “T.I.M.E.” The influence that Travis had on Turner is clear.

If you’re a Randy Travis fan, then you’ve probably seen some or all of More Life. The documentary shows some of the last live performances of the legendary artist’s career. It also features some of his friends along the way. In Episode 5 of the docu-series, Turner makes an appearance for a song and talks about meeting Randy for the first time.

Turner knew other singers who had met their heroes, and they had been let down. So, he was nervous about meeting the “Deeper Than the Holler” singer. Who wouldn’t be?

“I will honestly say that’s not the case with Randy Travis. He is everything that I ever hoped he would be. And believe me, those thoughts ran through my mind before I had met you, I didn’t know what to expect,” Turner admitted in his deep tone. “But the first time I ever met Randy was out in Las Vegas at the ACM Awards. Randy was in his seat and they came to take him backstage during a commercial break and on the way backstage, I noticed every move he made. He stopped and talked to this little old lady who was working as an usher there at the MGM that night. … But he stood there and talked to that little old lady like they were related.”

Randy Travis has impacted so many artists over the years. You could sit and name dozens of singers and songwriters. His impact cannot be overstated, and it’s going to live on for many more yea

Check out the rest of Episode 5 of More Life.

Randy Travis Wasn’t Always Randy Travis

Back before he signed with Warner Bros. in Nashville, before the fame and notoriety there was no Randy Travis – only Randy Ray. For that Randy, it was days working at the Nashville Palace, and nights singing there. He had tried the country music thing for a decade and faced rejection every single time. But, one day, a woman walked into the Palace.

That woman wasn’t just any regular patron, it was Martha Sharp. She worked for Warner Bros and met with Randy after a show one night. Nothing really came of it, at first. Sharp wasn’t even sure she could sign a musician. So, she reached out and heard from Kyle Lehning. He was all in on producing Randy. The only question was, what should they call him? His name was too… it just didn’t work.

Sharp came up with Randy Travis as the name and the rest is pretty much history. He exploded onto the scene, followed that up with hit after hit after hit, and became the legend that we all know and love. Although I think he could have still made it as Randy Ray, that might just be me.