b. 4 January 1945, Loma Linda, California, USA. Opting for the pedal steel guitar as his instrument of choice might appear at first glance to have narrowed Maness’ field of opportunity. As things turned out, his remarkable technical expertise offset any potential danger of being sidelined. The list of artists with whom he has played on record is staggering in both length and quality. Among the many are Herb Alpert, Eric Andersen, Tony Booth, the International Submarine Band, the Byrds (1968’s seminal Sweetheart Of The Rodeo), Glen Campbell, the Carpenters, Carlene Carter, Neil Diamond, Phil Everly, and Arlo Guthrie. He was a member of the Desert Rose Band, and later worked with fellow bandsman Chris Hillman. Others include Engelbert Humperdinck, Lyle Lovett, Country Joe McDonald, Rose Maddox, Bette Midler, Gram Parsons, Bonnie Raitt, Earl Scruggs, Ringo Starr, Tanya Tucker, and Dwight Yoakam. It is noteworthy that reviews of a substantial percentage of the albums on which Maness has worked make highly favourable mention of his contributions, with him sometimes being singled out for praise exceeding that bestowed upon the headliner. An outstanding exponent of the pedal steel guitar, Maness has built a considerable following among country music fans and critics. Indeed, in 1970, the Academy of Country Music elected him Steel Guitar Player Of The Year and by 1999 he had been re-elected a further 16 times.