Twitty fathered four children across two marriages, with at least three of his kids (son Michael and daughters Joni Lee and Kathy) showing promise as country singers. Jimmy Twitty, his fourth child (and third with second wife Temple "Mickey" Medley), seems content away from the country music spotlight, so we'll focus on his older siblings.
Conway wed his first wife, Ellen Matthews, in 1953. The couple married at a young age because Matthews was pregnant with a son, Michael.
A chip off the old block, Michael has been a country singer since the '70s. Back then, he cut at least two singles for Capitol Records ("Mississippi Rolling Stone" and "The Closest Thing to You"). He also recorded several songs, including a version of "The Gambler," under the name Charlie Tango. His 1984 album Ramblin' Man (Twitty City Records) features Conway as producer and guest vocalist.
Since then, Michael has become a tribute act to his late father.
Michael's son Tre keeps his grandfather's music alive as well by taking his family's timeless songs on the road, as a solo act and with Loretta Lynn's granddaughter, Tayla Lynn Finger.
Conway's daughter Joni Lee, his first of three children with Medley, has been her dad's best-known musical heir since the '70s.
At age 16, Joni sang two songs with her dad: "Don't Cry Joni" and No. 1 country single "Touch The Hand." Joni was one of just three duet partners to score hits with her dad, with the others being Lynn and Ronnie McDowell.
A 1976 full-length solo album on MCA Records followed, but it failed to replicate the success of her father-daughter duets.
Joni went on to marry singer-songwriter and Nashville session musician John Wesley Ryles.
Like Michael, Kathy recorded under a stage name (Jessica James). Her run as Jessica is immortalized in the above clip from the series Pop! Goes The Country. She was good in that role yet great when furthering the family business by performing "Linda On My Mind" and other Conway classics.
At one point, Kathy performed in The Next Generation, a collection of country artists' kids including Lynn's daughter Peggy, Johnny Cash's daughter Cathy and George Jones and Tammy Wynette's daughter Georgette.
This article was originally published in July of 2020.
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