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Merle Robert Travis (November 29, 1917 – October 20, 1983) was an American country singer, songwriter and guitarist. He was born in Rosewood, Kentucky. Travis wrote many well-known songs including: "Sixteen Tons." Travis is best known for his masterful guitar playing style. The style of finger-picking known as "Travis picking" is named after him. He was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1977.