Veteran Nashville music executive Roy Wunsch, whose 30-year career advanced the careers of many influential country stars, has passed away in Nashville on Friday after a long struggle against Alzheimer’s disease. Wunsch, 75, worked with and promoted the careers of Tammy Wynette, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, and Dolly Parton among others.
Much of Wunsch’s career was spent working at CBS/Sony Music’s Columbia and Epic labels. Wunsch was picked to lead the Nashville division of CBS in 1975, moving upwards until being named the president of the Nashville division of Sony Music in 1990. He was known as an innovator, adopting marketing strategies that shifted the traditional image of country music towards an embrace of more modern styles. Wunsch also chaired the boards of both the Country Music Association and the Country Music Hall of Fame.
Wunsch leaves behind Mary Ann McCready, his wife of 30 years, daughter Cynthia Wunsch Bowen, and son Roy Wunsch.