This day in Country Music

Jim Reeves
February 24, 2016 – 06:50 pm
2013: Trace Adkins raises more

Gentleman Jim Reeves was perhaps the biggest male star to emerge from the Nashville sound. His mellow baritone voice and muted velvet orchestration combined to create a sound that echoed around his world and has lasted to this day. Detractors will call the sound country-pop (or plain pop), but none can argue against the large audience that loves this music. Reeves was capable of singing hard country ("Mexican Joe" went to #1 in 1953), but he made his greatest impact as a country-pop crooner. From 1955 through 1969, Reeves was consistently in the country and pop charts - an amazing fact in light of his untimely death in an airplane accident in 1964.

Not only was he a presence in the American charts, but he became country music's foremost international ambassador and, if anything, was even more popular in Europe and Britain than in his native America. After his death, his fan base didn't diminish at all, and several of his posthumous hits actually outsold his earlier singles; no less than six number one singles arrived in the three years following his burial. In fact, during the '70s and '80s, he continued to have hits with both unreleased material and electronic duets like "Take Me in Your Arms and Hold Me" with Deborah Allen and "Have You Ever Been Lonely?" with his smooth-singing female counterpart of the plush Nashville sound, Patsy Cline, who also perished in an airplane crash, in 1963. But Reeves' legacy remains with lush country - pop singles like "Four Walls" (1957) and "He'll Have to Go" (1959), which defined both his style and an entire era of country music.

Reeves was born and raised in Galloway, TX, where he was one of nine children. Tragically, his father died when Jim was only ten months old, forcing his mother to farm and raise her family. At the age of five, he was given an old guitar, and shortly afterward, he heard a Jimmie Rodgers record through his older brother. From that moment on, Reeves was entranced by country music and Rodgers in particular. By the time he was 12 years old, he had already appeared on a radio show in Shreveport, LA. Though he was fascinated with music, Reeves also was a talented athlete and during his teens he decided he was going to pursue a career as a baseball player. Winning an athletic scholarship to the University of Texas, Reeves enrolled at the school to study speech and drama, but he dropped out after six weeks to work at the shipyards in Houston. Soon, he had returned to baseball, playing in the semiprofessional leagues before signing with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1944. He stayed with the team for three years before seriously injuring his ankle and thereby ruining his chances of a prolonged athletic career.

For the next few years, Reeves went through a number of blue - collar jobs while trying to decide on a profession. During this time he began singing as an amateur, appearing both as a solo artist and as the frontman for Moon Mullican's band. In 1949, Reeves cut a number of songs for the small independent Macy label, none of which were particularly successful. In the early '50s, Reeves decided that he would make broadcasting his vocation, initially working for KSIG in Gladewater, TX, before establishing himself at KGRI in Henderson. Over the next few years, Reeves was a disc jockey and newscaster at KGRI, moving to KWKH in Shreveport, LA, in November of 1952, becoming host of the popular Louisiana Hayride. Late in 1952, Hank Williams failed to make an appearance on the show, and Reeves sang in his place. His performance was enthusiastically received, and Abbott Records immediately signed him to a record contract. "Mexican Joe" was Reeves' debut single for Abbott, and it quickly climbed to number one in the spring of 1953, spending nine weeks at the top of the charts. It was followed by another number one hit, "Bimbo", later in 1953, establishing that Reeves was not a one-hit wonder; later that same year, he was made a full-time member of the Louisiana Hayride.

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Popular Q&A
OLDSKOOL COUNTRY FANS..In your opinion, what was the SADDEST day in country music history? | Yahoo Answers

January 1, 1953 ... Hank Williams passed away, so young, so tragic, so much more to give the world. We'll never know what else might have been, we can only look back and imagine.

Classic Country Fans,what was the SADEST DAY IN COUNTRY MUSIC for you?FOR ME IT WAS APRIL 6TH 1998 ...? | Yahoo Answers

The exact dates I couldn't tell you right off the bat, but it was a sad day hearing that these singers had passed away, and I remember hearing to news on all of them either on tv or on the radio:
Johnny Cash
Waylon Jennings
Minnie Pearl
Grandpa Jones
Conway Twitty
Tammy Wynette
Buck Owens
Johnny Paycheck
Freddy Fender
June Carter Cash
Roy Acuff
Bill Monroe
Marty Robbins
these names, put together with all the other greats and legends of country music who have passed from this world, you know there is gonna be one heck of a concert going on in heaven when we all get there. I…

What day did country music come out?

The world will never know the day country music came out, for it started in the United States before the nation won its independence from Great Britain. That's over 235 years ago.
As far as the popularity of country music on radio, that would have started back in the 1920's.
As far as the popularity of country music on television, that would have started back in the 1950's.

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