Tommy W. Pedigo received his first guitar at age 16 in 1947 from his father, Walter Pedigo. Coming out of the depression, money was tight for Walter, a farmer with his wife and four children. The price for the guitar was $40 and so began Tommy’s foolishness with music.

In 1951, Tommy began writing songs when attending Tennessee Polytechnic Institute, now known as Tennessee Technological University, located in Cookeville, Tennessee. Tommy hitchhiked from college for weekend musical gatherings at his Uncle Wesley Pedigo’s home and with George Elliott began the teaching to Tommy of how to play the guitar and fiddle. After the weekend, Tommy enjoyed the ride back on the Trailways Bus with Dottie West, who also attended Tennessee Tech.

Tommy, 22, met Mary Rebecca Rogers, a Morrison cheerleader/basketball player along with musical flair inherited from her father, Otis Edward Rogers, brought Tommy to his knees smitten by her charm/talent. Tommy in hot pursuit convinced her to marry him in 1952. Soon afterward, Tommy received his draft paper from Uncle Sam and found himself in Germany. He put his musical talent to work while there. He enjoyed playing fiddle with his Army buddies when at Wildflecken Kaserne (Bad Kissingen) and in the military community of Aschaffenburg. Tommy managed to switch his MO infantry to supply by attending the school in Berchtesgaden, the beautiful German Bavarian Alps.

After discharge from the Army, Tommy returned to Tennessee and learned that in Detroit the economy was much better than in the South. In 1955 while in Detroit, Tommy’s cousin, who attended AA meetings, asked Tommy to play at the local AA club. In support of his cousin, Tommy and Rebecca played and that began the entertainment journey. After saving enough money to purchase an 80-acre farm on Big Hickory Creek, Tommy and Rebecca returned back to the farm community of Vervilla, Tennessee. The farm was later sold to his sister. Tommy moved to McMinnville to full time employment as a accountant and personnel manager for Mullican & Mullican, a construction company. In 1962, Tommy began placing the musical notes to his lyrics with the assistance of Mrs. Frances Barksdale, a local student piano teacher. In 1962, Tommy established the Pedigo Publishing Post having copyrighted his wife’s songs, Only In My Dreams and Love Is Blind with BMI mailed to radio stations. In 1964, the songs of Red Headed Woman, Trouble, Memphis Town Blues and Whiskey, Women and Wild Living were demo-recorded, never mailed out to any radio station. And thus in 1966 began the series of songs and records. Tommy went on to produce records with other various artists. More to come on that later.

Tommy first began to go out in public with his wife, Rebecca, beside him, as he taught her to play the guitar while he played fiddle along with his beloved Uncle “Wes” and then son-in-law, Bobby Mason at their first play date at Centertown High School in 1964. In 1967, Tommy along with his wife, Rebecca, joined the Chattanooga Music Union. The following year, Tommy became a CMA member. This began the many entertainment days at local American Legion/VFW clubs, along with playing for Barry Goldwater in 1964 at the Huntsville Monsanto Mountain Country Club in Alabama. In 1967, Tommy with his wife beside him went out with their bands to perform at the Non-Commissioned Officer’s Clubs at Ft. Lee, VA; Ft. Rucker, AL; Craig AFB, AL; Lockbourne AFB (now known as Rickenbacker ANGB), OH. Of interest, this club had two ballrooms with two bands playing simultaneously. At one of their many bookings at Lockbourne, Tommy and Rebecca found their band performing along with Count Basie in the adjoining ballroom! Tommy and Rebecca with their band continued touring Redstone Arsenal, AL; Ft. McPherson, GA; Langley AFB, VA; Robbins AFB, GA; Eglin AFB, FL; Meridian Naval Air Station, MS; Scott AFB, IL; Clinton Sherman AFB, OK; Myrtle Beach AFB, SC; Bunker Hill AFB (now known as Grissom AFB), IN. Tommy enjoys sharing of the night their band was breaking down their instruments, when the men for the Jackson 5 (Michael Jackson was still a youngster) was moving in behind to set up for their performance. The list continues with Ellsworth AFB, OK, Altus AFB, OK, Homestead AFB, FL; Barksdale AFB, LA; Seymour Johnson AFB, NC and ending with AEDC, Arnold Engineering Development Center, TN.

Tommy and Rebecca, since have retired in their home on the Barren Fork River. Tommy confides of having many more songs that could be recorded, but has enjoyed listening to the many various local musicians play his songs his way.


Click the title to here some of Tommy's music

Whiskey, Women and Wild Living

Redheaded Woman

Love is Blind

Goodbye Old St Louis

Only in My Dreams

Click here to check out the OLO and ANA record anthology.


Tommy W Pedigo On Line

PO Box 666 McMinnville, TN 37110

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