[78-L] WOLVERTON MOUNTAIN
dlennick at sympatico.ca
Thu Mar 7 21:39:28 PST 2013
Dropping like flies, aren't they? Canadian legend Stompin' Tom Connors' death
has been the big news in Canada yesterday and today.
On 3/8/2013 12:31 AM, kil at roadrunner.com wrote:
> Claude King died Thursday morning. I found at least one 78 by him on Specialty from his Louisiana Hayride days.
> This obit is from Pure Country Music....
> Claude King, a Country Music Legend, has passed away. He died on the morning of March 7th at age 90 of unknown causes. King made Clifton Clowers a household name in 1962 and by extension secured his own place in country music history. He was at home in Shreveport, Louisiana at the time of his death.
> King never strayed far from his Lousiana roots as he was born in Keithville just a few short miles from Shreveport. At a young age, his love of baseball pushed him to excel to the point where he recieved a baseball scholarship to the Universtiy of Idaho at Moscow. After college and a stint in the Navy, however, Claude came back home to Louisiana where he joined the Lousiana Hayride in the early 50's. Hayride is by-and-large considered the show that launched the careers of many unknowns from the late 40s until the early 60s including Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, George Jones and King himself. During his early days on Hayride, Claude recorded a few songs but none were successful.
> That all changed with his signing on to Columbia Records' Nashville division in 1961. Claude began to focus more on his career and in short order he had a top 10 hit on his hands with "Big River, Big Man" which even had small pop crossover success. But it was his hit in 1962 that really put Claude King on the map -- "Wolverton Mountain." The song was written by Merle Kilgore about his uncle, Clifton Clowers, who did indeed live on Wolverton Mountain in Arkansas. The song became an instant hit and stayed at number one for nine weeks during a 26-week run on Billboard's country chart. The song sold over a million copies and hit gold disc status. 2012 marked the 50th anniversary of that hit song.
>> From 1962 until 1973, Claude had 29 hits under the Columbia label. From there he continued to tour, record, tackled several acting roles in movies and on TV, and even had a day dedicated to him in 1981 called Wolverton Mountain Day. Throughout the 80s, 90s and 2000s, King would tour and perform to fans everywhere, but generally he stayed "retired" from the business. He would periodically participate in TV shows and radio shows that celebrated his music and those of his fellow country pioneers. In 2008 Claude was the recipient of a day of celebration and tribute by the Louisiana Hayride to celebrate not only his 85th birthday, but a new recording he debuted on the show from his new album "The Cajun Cowboy Rides Again."
> Claude was always considered a class act by us. His long career was only surpassed by his marriage to his wife, Barbara, of 67 years. He will be greatly missed but thanks be to Wolverton Mountain, he'll remain with us for a long, long time!
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