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    Jim Reeves

    Become fan 12 Rate 10 Like & Share
    Genre:Ethnic/Folk, Country
    Rank:97 history »
    4.6/5 from 10 users

    Most Popular Songs (more)

    957 5.0/5
    Jingle Bells lyrics
    1,179 4.0/5
    C-H-R-I-S-T-M-A-S lyrics
    Blue Christmas lyrics
    Señor Santa Claus lyrics
    2,297 4.0/5
    I'll Fly Away lyrics
    2,563 5.0/5
    The Merry Christmas Polka lyrics
    O Little Town of Bethlehem lyrics
    2,903 5.0/5
    Mary's Boy Child lyrics
    Silver Bells lyrics
    An Old Christmas Card lyrics

    Most Popular Albums (more)

    51 4.3/5
    Twelve Songs of Christmas [1963]
    117 4.1/5
    The Best of Jim Reeves: 20 Gospel Favorites [IMPORT] [2002]
    671 4.0/5
    We Thank Thee [1962]
    God Be with You [1958]
    1,262 4.0/5
    Welcome to My World [1996]
    Twelve Songs of Christmas [BMG Special] [1999]
    2,488 2.3/5
    My Cathedral [1967]
    2,714 3.0/5
    Good 'n' Country [1963]
    3,463 4.0/5
    The Very Best of Jim Reeves [Double Platinum] [2002]
    Yours Sincerly, Jim Reeves [1966]


    Born into a struggling farm family in Panola County, Texas, on August 20, 1923, Jim Reeves grew up listening to recordings by Jimmie Rodgers and the Carter Family. After graduating high school in Carthage, Texas, he worked various jobs and played minor league baseball until a leg injury ended his sports career. Next, he became a radio announcer on East Texas stations and on Shreveport, Louisiana's powerful KWKH, home of the Louisiana Hayride.

    Meanwhile, he recorded for the tiny Macy's label and then for the better-known Abbott label. His breakthrough came in 1953 with "Mexican Joe." This #1 country hit helped him secure a Hayride slot as a featured singer and, in 1955, an RCA recording contract and a place in the Grand Ole Opry lineup. Working with RCA producers Steve Sholes and Chet Atkins, Reeves began recording hits like "Yonder Comes a Sucker" and "According to My Heart."

    By 1957, Reeves was smoothing out his sound, as he did on "Four Walls." On this recording, minimal instrumentation and the Jordanaires' background vocals framed his intimate baritone vocal. This #1 country hit also rose to #11 on the pop charts and marked Reeves as a superb romantic balladeer. It put him in the vanguard of the pop-flavored Nashville Sound, which helped country win new adult audiences amid the explosion of youth-oriented rock & roll acts during the late '50s and early '60s. He reinforced his uptown sound with formal stage attire that cultivated his "Gentleman Jim" image.

    Reeves searched diligently for song material, strove for perfection onstage and in the studio, and aggressively promoted his records to disc jockeys. His work paid off with hits like "Blue Boy," "Billy Bayou," "Am I Losing You," "He'll Have to Go," and "Welcome to My World." Appearances on network TV shows and his own ABC network pop radio program (which originated from WSM during 1957-58) further expanded his audience.

    Tours to England, Ireland, Europe and South Africa, complemented by recordings broadcast overseas on the Armed Forces Radio and Television Network, helped make Reeves an international star, popular in many African nations, India and Asia as well as in the U. S., Australia and Europe. As Chet Atkins reflected in 1992, "Even though they couldn't understand the words, sometimes, they just loved the sound."

    But on July 31, 1964, Reeves' velvet voice fell silent when the one-engine plane he was piloting crashed near Nashville in heavy rain, killing the singer and bandmember Dean Manuel. After a joint memorial service in Nashville, Reeves's body was buried near Carthage, Texas.

    Nevertheless, his popularity and influence on country's line of smooth ballad singers continued. Posthumous hits include 1965's "Is It Really Over," 1972's "Missing You," and his 1981-82 chat maker, "Have You Ever Been Lonely (Have You Ever Been Blue)," for which producer Owen Bradley combined existing separate renditions by Reeves and Patsy Cline.

    For his cross-market success, his international achievements and his business acumen, Jim Reeves was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1967.

    The New York Times

    Jim Reeves, Country Music Star, Killed in Tennessee Plane Crash

    NASHVILLE, Aug 2 (AP) ---Jim Reeves, 39 years old, the country music singer, and a companion were found dead in the wreckage of a private, single-engine plane 10 miles south of here today.

    Mr. Reeves' body was identified from a driver's license taken from the wreckage. The other victim was believed to be Mr. Reeves' pianist and road manager, Dean Manuel, 30.

    The plane crashed Friday night on a return trip from Batesville, Ark.

    John Kane, a Tennessee highway patrolman said the plane was demolished. The engine was partly buried.

    The plane crashed in a wooded area just off U.S. 31. There was some evidence of fire in the wreckage.

    The bodies were taken to a Nashville funeral home.

    More than 700 volunteer searchers,
    civil-defense workers and policemen covered a 20-square-mile area for two days. Military, state and private planes also searched the area.

    Many of the searchers were Mr. Reeves' friends and associates in the country-music business. They included Chet Atkins, the guitarist, and Eddy Arnold, Stonewall Jackson, and Ernest Tubb, the singers.

    Mr. Reeves turned to music when he suffered an arm injury in spring training with the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team.

    The former "Grand Old Opry" star recorded a number of popular songs, including "Four Walls," "He'll Have To Go," and "Mexican Joe."

    He recently was star of a movie, "Kimberly Jim," filmed in South Africa and just released in this country.

    © 1964 The New York Times

    Jim Reeves
    Originally a stone country singer, smooth-toned Jim Reeves from Texas reached amazing heights as a pop balladeer and since his death in an air crash his fame has burgeoned into cult proportions. Born in 1923 in Galloway, Panola County, Texas, Reeves was just as interested in sport as in music and became the star of the Cathage High School baseball team, although he still performed at local events. He entered the University of Texas in Austin, and his baseball prowess as a pitcher soon attracted the attention of the St. Louis Cardinals scouts who signed him to a contract. An unlucky slip gave him an ankle injury that halted one career and gave rise to another.

    In 1947, after marrying a schoolteacher, Mary White, Jim moved to Shreveport and ended up with a job as announcer on KWKH, the station that owned the Louisiana Hayride. It was one of Reeves' jobs to announce the Saturday night Hayride show and he was even allowed to sing occasionally. One night in 1952, Hank Williams failed to arrive and Jim was asked to fill in. In the audience was Fabor Robinson, owner of Abbott Records, who immediately signed Reeves to a contract. After a number one record with "Mexican Joe" (1953), RCA signed him in 1955 amid considerable competition. That same year, he joined the Grand Ole Opry at the recommendation of Ernest Tubb and Hank Snow.

    The February, 1957 release of "Four Walls" proved the real turning point in Reeves' career. In 1959, Reeves recorded his all-time greatest hit, "He'll Have to Go." The theme was familiar enough. Some years earlier it might have been called a honky-tonk song. But the treatment, with Reeves' dark, intimate, velvet tones gliding over a muted backing, was something different again. The result brought him instant stardom. During the early 1960s, he also continued to dominate the US country charts, with hits including Guilty (1963), and "Welcome to My World" (1964).

    Tragically, on a flight back to Nashville from Arkansas on July 31, 1964, Jim and his manager ran into heavy rain just a few miles from Nashville's Beery Field and crashed, killing both men. Voted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1967, Reeves continued to log hits posthumously as recently as the 1970s and '80s...

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