Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Jim Reeves

Jim Reeves the singer with that velvet voice.

The only country singer whose international popularity surpassed his popularity in the United States.
He was one singer who never experimented with an electric guitar and always used a box guitar.

One of Jim’s career highlight was headlining a breakthrough concert at New York’s famed Carnegie Hall. The group flew to New York on a TWA plane renamed “Grand Ole Opry Skyliner” for the occasion. (see markings on upper left)

Jim was a popular interview subject during the annual Disc Jockey convention in Nashville. (notice the camera in the forefront with the old flash system where you had to throw away the flash bulb after every use) 

Jim at the age of 22 with his mother. Four years after this Travis (as he was then known) made his first commercial recording.

Here is Jim in 1957 with the Jordanaires providing the backup.

One of the rare records of Jim which was recorded in 1947 at Macy’s.  The song was co-written by Jim and Al Courtney, a radio colleague.

One of the print ads bought by RCA to run in the trade magazines promoting the song “Anna Marie”

Jim’s big smash hit “I love You because” which became popular all over Europe. The song written by blind songwriter Leon Payne, not only showed off Jim’s vocal prowess, but his willingness to embrace an unconcentional artist as well. Amazingly , it features a harp, unheard of on a country record, but just another example of how Jim Reeves was far ahead of his time. 

This postcard is one of the many letters and cards that were sent by Jim Reeves to the Gath family. This one he addressed to Doris and her husband Elmer as well as “Bimbo” a cute reference to their little boy Eldon.
It is said that at a stage show when he sang the song “Bimbo” he invited little Eldon to sit on his knee. But much to the chagrin of the parents the shy little boy declined !! 

The Extended Play (EP) of 45 rpm had four songs on it. Four Walls, I know and you know, The Gods were angry with Me and Look behind you. 

Even in the year 1960 Jim was paid just $750. Out of this meager amount he kept his Blue Boys on salary and paid for the road expenses like gas etc. Compare this with what some of the singers earn today. 

It was tragic that his plane (which he was flying) was caught in a storm and he died in the crash at the early age of 40.
He happens to be my favourite country singer and hence I have used his name as my pseudo name in Flickr.

While writing this post I was listening to the songs by Gentleman Jim from the dedicated radio of streaming songs. What better way to put you in the right mood.


Nas Dean said...

Wow! Interesting post about Jim Reeves! Thanks.

harman singh said...

great singer ..thanks for sharing,,,!

Gina said...

Nice post. I've never heard of him before but now I'm listening to his music. Pretty cool!

From Diary of a Writer in Progress

Daisy said...

I like his voice. I heard his music a lot when I was young as he was a favorite of both my Mother and my Grandmother. Nice post!

Kristy @PampersandPinot said...

Forty years old - so young when he passed!

Marina@Cowboycountryvegetarian said...

I love reading posts like this one. Thanks!

Susan Deborah said...

I grew up listening to him so you can imagine the delight when I saw this post. Long ago, I did a post on him and you had commented, I think.

Gentleman Jim is always evergreen for me!

Joy always,

anilkurup said...

Honest, this is one of the best piece I have read . Enlightening too.

The majestic voice such as of Jim Reeves is a rarity.

Nikita Banerjee Bhagat said...

Wonderful post! :) It is sad that such a talented man passed away so soon!

P.N. Subramanian said...

Beautiful, beautiful!. I too was delighted. Ir seems I have some 78 rpm records too back home.

Elizabeth Mueller said...

Thanks for sharing him with us--just think of it, he's just one person who followed his dreams and succeeded. What an inspiration.


A to Z co-host

CJ said...

My Dad just loves Jim Reeves! I've grown up hearing his songs because of that...My lullaby when I was baby used to be a not-very-well-known song of his, 'A Fallen Star, That's What You Are'. I love that song, and I my Grandma used to sing 'Bimbo' for my brother when he was a kid.
The words in all his songs are beautiful, and the way he sings, is just wonderful. His voice soothes me :)

I loved to read about him here...I wonder, how come so many people don't know about him.

And thanks for commenting on my post.
It's sad that I've never waltzed before :)

rama said...

He is our favorite too. Thanks for sharing so many things about him.