Merle Robert Travis (November 29, 1917 – October 20, 1983) was an American country and Western singer, songwriter, and musician born in Rosewood, Kentucky.
His lyrics often discussed the life and exploitation of coal miners. Among his many well-known songs are “Sixteen Tons”, “Re-Enlistment Blues” and “Dark as a Dungeon”. However, it is his masterful guitar playing for which he is best known today.
He was a 1977 Country Music Hall of Fame inductee.