Tommy Collins (singer)

From Infogalactic: the planetary knowledge core
Jump to: navigation, search
Tommy Collins
Tommy Collins in 1966
Background information
Birth name Leonard Raymond Sipes
Also known as Tommy Collins
Born (1930-09-28)September 28, 1930
Bethany, Oklahoma, US
Died March 14, 2000(2000-03-14) (aged 69)
Ashland City, Tennessee, US
Genres Country, Bakersfield sound
Occupation(s) Singer-songwriter, musician
Years active 1950s – 2000
Labels Capitol, Columbia

Leonard Raymond Sipes (September 28, 1930 – March 14, 2000), better known as Tommy Collins, was an American country music singer and songwriter.

Active primarily during the 1950s through the 1970s, Collins was instrumental in helping create the Bakersfield sound of the country music genre. He enjoyed a string of hits during the mid-1950s including "It Tickles" and "Watcha Gonna Do Now". He also wrote several songs for other artists, including "If You Ain't Lovin' (You Ain't Livin')", which was a top 10 hit for Faron Young in 1954 and a No. 1 hit by George Strait in 1988.

After several years in the ministry, Collins returned to recording. In 1965, he had a comeback hit with "If You Can't Bite, Don't Growl". In the 1970s, he wrote several hits for Merle Haggard, including the No. 1 hits "Carolyn" and "The Roots of My Raising". In 1981, Haggard recorded a biographical tribute to Collins called "Leonard".

Collins was the inspiration and character talked about in Craig Morgan's song, "I Wish I Could See Bakersfield".

Collins remained active in the songwriting business. He died March 14, 2000, in Ashland City, Tennessee.



Year Album US Country Label
1957 Words and Music Country Style Capitol
1958 Light of the Lord
1959 This Is Tommy Collins
1960 Songs I Love to Sing
1966 Let's Live a Little Tower
Dynamic Columbia
1968 Shindig Tower
Tommy Collins on Tour (His Most Requested Songs) 44 Columbia
1971 Callin' Starday
1980 Country Souvenir Greenwood
Cowboys Get Lucky Some of the Time
1986 New Patches Password


Year Single US Country
1954 "You Better Not Do That" 2
"Whatcha Gonna Do Now" 4
1955 "Untied" 10
"It Tickles" 5
"I Guess I'm Crazy" 13
"You Oughta See Pickles Now" 15
1964 "I Can Do That" (with Wanda Collins) 47
1966 "If You Can't Bite, Don't Growl"A 7
"Shindig in the Barn" 47
1967 "Don't Wipe the Tears That You Cry for Him (On My Good White Shirt)" 62
"Birmingham" 60
"Big Dummy" 52
1968 "I Made the Prison Band" 64


  1. Whitburn, Joel (2011). Top Pop Singles 1955–2010. Record Research, Inc. p. 192. ISBN 0-89820-188-8.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links