Google+ Followers

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Jimmie Rodgers born 18 September 1933

James Frederick "Jimmie" Rodgers (born September 18, 1933 in Camas, Washington, United States) is an American popular music singer. Rodgers had a brief run of mainstream popularity in the late 1950s with a string of crossover singles that ranked highly on the Billboard Pop Singles, Hot Country and Western Sides and Hot Rhythm and Blues Sides charts; in the 1960s, He is not related to the legendary country singer of the same name.  
Rodgers was taught music by his mother, learned to play the piano and guitar, and joined a band called "The Melodies" started by violinist Phil Clark, while he served in the United States Air Force in Korea. 

Like a number of other entertainers of the era, he was one of the contestants on Arthur Godfrey's talent show on the radio. When Hugo Peretti and Luigi Creatore left RCA Victor for Morris Levy's company, Roulette Records, they became aware of Rodgers' talent and signed him up. 
Jimmie Rodgers' first big hit came in the Summer of 1957 when he covered a song that had been done by Bob Merrill in 1954 titled Honeycomb. It was a smash hit making Jimmie a bonafide star. The tune was Rodgers' biggest hit, staying on the top of the charts for four weeks. It sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc by the RIAA. 

In 1958, he appeared on NBC's The Gisele MacKenzie Show. Also in 1958 he sang the opening theme song of the movie The Long,
Hot Summer, starring Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward and Orson Welles. He then had his own short-lived televised variety show on NBC.
In the next year he followed it with several more top ten hits: Kisses Sweeter Than Wine (which had been a 1951 hit for the Weavers), Oh-Oh, I'm Falling In Love Again, Secretly, and Are You Really Mine. Rodgers continued to put hits in the top forty on the Roulette label into 1960. In 1959 he hosted his own network variety show on NBC. From 1962 to 1966 he recorded on Dot and then moved to the A&M label. Rodgers also appeared in some movies, including Back Door To Hell and The Little Shepherd From Kingdom Come.   
In 1966, a long dry spell ended for Rodgers when he re-entered the Top 40 with "It's Over" (later to be recorded by Eddy Arnold, Elvis Presley, Glen Campbell and Sonny James). In 1967, he had his final charting Top 100 single, "Child of Clay". 

In 1967, however, right after signing with A&M, Jimmie's life and career changed forever. In December of 1967, he was stopped by an off-duty police officer on the freeway after leaving a party. The details are sketchy and the incident remains a mystery, but Jimmie somehow suffered a severe skull fracture as a result of the encounter and claims the police brutally attacked him. The police report maintains that Rodgers was intoxicated and hurt himself when he stumbled and fell. Jimmie later sued the City of Los Angeles and settled out of court. His life, however, would never be the same. In his 2010 biography "Me, the Mob, and the Music," singer Tommy James wrote that Morris Levy, the Mafia-connected head of Roulette Records, had arranged the attack. All of Rodgers' most successful singles had been released by Roulette. 
Recovery from his injuries caused an approximately year-long period in which Rodgers ceased to perform. He eventually returned, though not reaching the Top 100 singles chart again. He did, however, make an appearance on the album chart as late as 1969, and his records hit the Billboard Country and Easy Listening charts until 1979.  
Jimmie attempted a comeback of sorts, appearing regularly on "The Joey Bishop Show" in 1969, but after three brain surgeries he still suffered from convulsions and had trouble with balance. A portion of his face also sagged and he did not like appearing on camera for that reason. Forced into retirement in later years, he devoted himself to religion and performed only on occasion in the concert venue. 
Rodgers appeared in a 1999 video, Rock & Roll Graffiti by American Public Television, along with about 20 other performers. He stated that he had suffered from spastic dysphonia for a number of years, and could hardly sing. Despite his disability, he later formed a music publishing company, dabbled in real estate, remodeled houses and took up skydiving. He also sang at his own theatre for a time in Branson, Missouri.
Rodgers returned to Camas, Washington in 2011 and 2012, performing to sell-out crowds. After the 2012 concert, he returned home for open heart surgery, following a heart attack three weeks earlier.

Rodgers left Branson for semi-retirement some years ago, and his last gig, according to his website, was in Sandusky, Ohio, in August of 2014.. Today Jimmie resides in Southern California with his wife Mary (with whom he has a daughter, Katrine) and lots of Boston Terriers. Jimmie continues to write music, poems and is extensively involved in writing and scoring animated films. 
(Info edited from IMDB and mainly Wikipedia )

1 comment:

boppinbob said...

For “Collectors Gold – Jimmie Rodgers” go here:

01 Honeycomb
02 Kisses Sweeter Than Wine
03 Soldier Won't You Marry Me
04 Oh Oh, I'm Falling In Love Again
05 The Long Hot Summer
06 Secretly
07 Make Me A Miracle
08 Are You Really Mine
09 The Wizard
10 Bimbmbey
11 I'm Never Gonna Tell
12 Woman From Liberia
13 Ring A Ling A Lario
14 Wonderful You
15 Tucumcari
16 TLC
17 Waltzing Matilde
18 Just A Closer Walk
19 English Country Garden
20 Old Jo Clark
21 No One Will Ever Know
22 It Keeps Right On A Hurtin'
23 Born To Lose
24 Two, Ten, Six Eighteen
25 The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
26 Puff
27 I've Forgotten More Than You'll Ever Know
28 Danny Boy
29 Blue Without You

A big thank you to Jake @ Jukebox City for link.