Country Musician. He was born in Beauregard Parish, Louisiana, and when he was a child, his family moved to Houston where he grew up and attended school. He had a keen interest in electronics and opened up his own radio repair shop after graduating where he also worked on electrical musical instruments, experimenting with amplifiers and teaching himself to play various types of guitars. By 1933 he was part of a Hawaiian musical group called The Blue Islanders which performed on a local radio station, and later joined the highly influential Blue Ridge Playboys. One day after hearing him perform, the musician Milton Brown told him he had some talent and should close his shop and focus more on his musical career. Ted began by turning his attention to writing song lyrics, completing his first hit song Truck Drivin' Blues for The Texas Wanderers in 1939. In 1940, Ted started his own band, Ted Daffan and the Texans, and based on the popularity of Truck Drivin' Blues, was signed to Columbia Records. He continued to write and perform what would become classics of the honky tonk style, but it was his 1942 hit, Born to Lose, that would cement his name in songwriting history. This song would go on to hit gold, then platinum, and be recorded by over a hundred artists as diverse as Johnny Cash, Leonard Cohen, Elton John and Ella Fitzgerald. Other songs followed: I'm a Fool to Care, No Letter Today and Worried Mind being the most popular and critically acclaimed. In 1944 he moved to California and worked as a bandleader before returning to Texas in 1946. Deciding to move into the business side of the industry, he created his own label, Daffan Records, in 1955 and handled artists like Floyd Tillman and Dickie McBride. In 1958 he moved to Nashville and set up his own music publishing company, before returning to Houston in 1961 and setting up a publishing company there as well. After several years, Ted retired from the music business entirely and lived a quiet life with his wife Bobbie. His legacy earned him many accolades: before his death in Houston on October 6, 1996, he had been inducted into the Academy of Country Music, the Texas Swing Music, the Western Swing Society, the Texas Steel Guitar Association, the State of Louisiana, and the Nashville Songwriters Association Halls of Fame.
Bio by: Lysa
Bobbie Martin Daffan