by Michelle Jenkins Turpin

They say Conway Twitty was the best friend a song ever had.  That loyal friend of the quintessential country song left us on June 5, 1993, at the tender age of 59.

The shock rang out all over the world, as Conway had fans that spanned the globe.  Many tears were shed in memory of this country music institution.  Conway’s career covered an astounding five decades with 55 #1 hits, 17 of which he wrote himself. Conway’s legendary growl and classic good looks set the female hearts a flutter.  The singer always acknowledged that he had a special connection with women.  He could appreciate their sensitivity as he was a sensitive soul, as well. 

In the years since Conway passed away, much has happened in regards to his estate.  His heirs were victorious in the battle for their father’s legacy, a battle that raged passionately for 16 years.  While the estate struggle was going full steam ahead, Conway’s family was unable to market their father’s image in any way.  This ultimately prevented Conway’s loyal fans from purchasing any kind of memorabilia or finding out any new Conway information at all. 

A new day has dawned for those who love Conway the most.  Conway’s heirs, consisting of his four children, have come together to form Conway Twitty United (CTU).  CTU was ultimately created as a vehicle to further the memory, love, and career achievements of their beloved father. 

The shining star of CTU at the present moment is a musical based on the life of Conway.  The musical, entitled “The Man, The Music, The Legend”, covers Conway’s personal life and career from his youth to his untimely passing.  Over 50 songs are performed by Glen Templeton, the artist chosen by Conway’s family to portray him.  Glen’s vocal similarities to Conway will astound even the most die-hard fan. 

Emily Portman joins Glen on stage with her spectacular performance as Loretta Lynn, Conway’s Diamond Duet partner and cherished best friend.  Her voice and presence will make you do a double-take, for you will swear the Coal Miner’s Daughter herself is right there on stage.  Emily Portman is a talented and beautiful woman. 

The musical is narrated by two accomplished actresses portraying Conway’s two daughters, Joni and Kathy.  It is through their eyes that the audience sees their daddy’s life.  The music is rockin’ and the memories are alive and well.  Conway lives on forever in the hearts of his family, friends, and fans.

Fans can find the musical playing in Laughlin, NV at the Riverside Resort and Casino from April 14-19th, with shows starting at 8 PM every night.  After the Nevada run is over, the musical will be traveling to a variety of cities.  Please check for current dates.  Click on “calendar”. 

A shortened version of the musical is currently the opening act for the George Jones show.  This is a perfect compliment to George’s show, as George and Conway share much of the same fan base.  While the musical is fresh and exciting, CTU has a few more tidbits to announce.  Wal-mart is currently carrying a line of shirts known as the Legends Collection.  One of the featured legends is Conway, of course.  His shirts are reportedly the top sellers.

The Twitty family is proud to present the Twitty family cookbook, which is now for sale at  The title of the book is “Conway Twitty’s Little Friend, The Twitty Bird, Presents Look What’s Cooking!”.  It’s a collection of family recipes as well as personal photographs from the Twitty family.  There are many more projects in the works for CTU.  Stay tuned….

There are many artists today who take their inspiration from George Jones or George Strait or Alan Jackson.  And that’s just fine.  Those are talented men.  But you never seem to hear of an artist drawing from Conway Twitty to fill their creative space.  It would seem that there is a simple explanation for that:  when God made Conway and his powerful voice and soul, He broke the mold. 

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Added: April 2009
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