If you love country music and you've been in East Texas for a while, then you know who Tony Douglas and The Shrimpers are. Well, Tony Douglas passed away last night and our hearts are just broken. He was 83.I had the honor of meeting Tony and we became fast friends. Tom Perryman introduced us and I had the privileged of listening to Tony's great stories about his experiences in country music. He had such a love for country music, and it showed! Tony was truly one of the finest people I have known, and I will miss him for sure.

Tony Douglas was born April 12, 1929, in Martin's Mill, right here is East Texas. Tony fell in love with country music while listening every Saturday night to the Grand Ole Opry on an old battery operated radio.

Tony always wished in some way, he could be a small part of country music. Well Tony's wish did come true when he returned to East Texas, after serving his country in the Army, with the 45th Anti-Aircraft Battalion in Kaiserslautern, Germany.

With the great desire to sing, he made the Saturday night circuit of small community musicals -- a different one every week. In 1961 Tony recorded the song “Shrimpin'" and gained national attention. The song was the reason Tony's band acquired the name "The Shrimpers", so the group became  Tony Douglas and "The Shrimpers."

Tony and "The Shrimpers" hit the road and entertained many and made tons of loyal fans. Tony and his "Shrimpers" performed shows across the country, and shared the Grand Ole Opry stage with legendary country artists like; Ernest Tubb, Charlie Walker, Dolly Parton, Osbourn Bros., Porter Wagoner, Leona Williams, Johnny Russell, and Kenny Price.

You will be missed Mr. Douglas! God bless.