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Singer Mel Tillis recovering from heart surgery

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press
Tuesday, March 11, 2014 - 10:01 am

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Country Music Hall of Fame singer Mel Tillis is recovering in Nashville after heart surgery over the weekend.

According to a statement from his daughter, Pam Tillis, the 81-year-old singer required a "routine heart procedure," but is expected to make a full recovery.

"In typical Mel Tillis fashion, he's already cutting up and cracking jokes with the nurses," Tillis said in a statement. Four scheduled shows have been canceled due to his surgery.

Tillis became a successful songwriter and singer despite dealing with a stutter. He has recorded more than 60 albums. His hits include "Good Woman Blues," ''Coca Cola Cowboy" and "Southern Rain." He's written top songs for George Strait, Ray Price, Bobby Bare, Kenny Rogers and many more.