Social Icons

Social Connect

Sonny James

  • Birthplace: Hackleburg, Alabama
  • Birthday: May 01
Date of passing: 
February 22, 2016

Obituary

Obituary: 

Sonny James was a country singer, who was known by the nickname “The Southern Gentleman.” His biggest hit came in 1957 with the teen anthem “Young Love.”

James, who favored a lighter country style, began performing regularly beginning in the mid-1950s, into the early 1980s. From 1967 through 1971 he had 16 consecutive No. 1 hits on Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart, and he was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2006.

He also performed sporadically on the musical, variety show Hee Haw, which he appeared on 10 times, from 1969 to 1981. He also appeared on The Bob Hope Show, The Ed Sullivan Show, The Johnny Cash Show, Dinah! and Donny and Marie.

In addition, his music was featured in films, including Slap Shot, starring Paul Newman, and most recently, Young Ones, starring Nicholas Hoult, as well as the television miniseries Lipstick on Your Collar, starring Ewan McGregor, and the telefilm A Holiday for Love, with Tim Matheson and Melissa Gilbert.

Sonny James was a country singer, who was known by the nickname “The Southern Gentleman.” His biggest hit came in 1957 with the teen anthem “Young Love.”

James, who favored a lighter country style, began performing regularly beginning in the mid-1950s, into the early 1980s. From 1967 through 1971 he had 16 consecutive No. 1 hits on Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart, and he was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2006.

He also performed sporadically on the musical, variety show Hee Haw, which he appeared on 10 times, from 1969 to 1981. He also appeared on The Bob Hope Show, The Ed Sullivan Show, The Johnny Cash Show, Dinah! and Donny and Marie.

In addition, his music was featured in films, including Slap Shot, starring Paul Newman, and most recently, Young Ones, starring Nicholas Hoult, as well as the television miniseries Lipstick on Your Collar, starring Ewan McGregor, and the telefilm A Holiday for Love, with Tim Matheson and Melissa Gilbert.

The singer got his start performing on his family’s weekly radio show on WMSD-AM in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. The exposure led to gigs and other radio shows, and he eventually signed with Capitol records. His first hit was 1957’s “Young Love,” which he followed up with "You're the Reason I'm in Love" and "First Date, First Kiss, First Love."

In 1972, James moved to Columbia Records, and continued to release hits, as well as his two best-known albums, 1976's 200 Years of Country Music and 1977's In Person, In Prison.

James died February 22, 2016, in Nashville, Tennessee. He was 87.

 

Show more

Main