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Pat Boone (1934)

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  Summary  

Charles Eugene "Pat" Boone is an American singer, actor and writer who has been a successful pop singer in the United States during the 1950s and early 1960s. He covered black artists' songs and sold more copies than his black counterparts. He sold over 45 million albums, had 38 Top 40 hits and appeared in more than 12 Hollywood movies. Boone's talent as a singer and actor, combined with his old-fashioned values, contributed to his popularity in the early rock and roll era. He continues to perform, and speak as a motivational speaker, a television personality, and a conservative political commentator.

According to Billboard, Boone was the second biggest charting artist of the late 1950s, behind only Elvis Presley but ahead of Ricky Nelson and The Platters, and was ranked at No. 9—behind The Rolling Stones and Paul McCartney but ahead of artists such as Aretha Franklin and The Beach Boys—in its listing of the Top 100 Top 40 Artists 1955-1995.
Boone still holds the Billboard record for spending 220 consecutive weeks on the charts with one or more songs each week.

At the age of twenty-three, he began hosting a half-hour ABC variety television series, The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom, which aired for 115 episodes (1957–1960). Many musical performers, including Edie Adams, Andy Williams, Pearl Bailey and Johnny Mathis made appearances on the show. His cover versions of rhythm and blues hits had a noticeable effect on the development of the broad popularity of rock and roll. During his tours in the 1950s, Elvis Presley was one of his opening acts.

As a prolific author, Boone had a No. 1 bestseller in the 1950s (Twixt Twelve and Twenty, Prentice-Hall). In the 1960s, he focused on gospel music and is a member of the Gospel Music Hall of Fame.

  Biography  

 Early life
Born Charles Eugene Boone in Jacksonville, Florida, Boone was reared primarily in Nashville, Tennessee, a place he still visits. His family moved to Nashville from Florida when Boone was two years old. He attended and graduated from David Lipscomb High School in Nashville in 1952. Boone grew up as a Christian in the Church of Christ. His younger brother, Nick, was also a pop singer in the 1950s, and is now a church music leader.


Boone has claimed to be a direct descendant of the American pioneer Daniel Boone. He is also a cousin of two stars of western television series: the late Richard Boone of CBS's Have Gun, Will Travel and Randy Boone, one of the co-stars of NBC's The Virginian and CBS's Cimarron Strip.

In college, he primarily attended David Lipscomb College, later Lipscomb University, in Nashville. He graduated from Columbia University School of General Studies magna cum laude in 1958 and also attended North Texas State University, now known as the University of North Texas. During his college career, he was a member of Kappa Alpha Order.

 Career
He began recording in 1954 for Republic Records. His 1955 version of Fats Domino's "Ain't That a Shame" was a hit. (Domino complimented Boone's rendition.) This set the stage for the early part of Boone's career, which focused on covering R&B songs by black artists for a white American market. Randy Wood, the owner of Dot, had issued an R & B single by the Griffin Brothers in 1951 called "Tra La La-a"—a different song than the later LaVern Baker one—and he was keen to put out another version after the original had failed. This became the B side of the first Boone single "Two Hearts Two Kisses", originally by the Charms - whose "Hearts Of Stone" had been covered by the label's Fontane Sisters. Once the Boone version was in the shops, it spawned more covers by the Crewcuts, Doris Day and Frank Sinatra. In the UK the song was covered by Lita Roza, a band singer with Ted Heath, and her version was in the shops first.

A No. 1 single in 1956 by Boone was not so much a cover as a revival of a then-seven year old song "I Almost Lost My Mind", which had been covered at the time by another black star, Nat King Cole, from the original by Ivory Joe Hunter, who was to benefit from Boone's hit version not only in royalties but in status as he was back in the news.

According to an opinion poll of high school students in 1957, the singer was nearly the "two-to-one favorite over Elvis Presley among boys and preferred almost three-to-one by girls..."

Boone's well-groomed, clean-cut, boyish image won him a long-term product endorsement contract from General Motors during the late 1950s, lasting through the 1960s. He succeeded Dinah Shore singing the praises of the GM product: "See the USA in your Chevrolet...drive your Chevrolet through the USA, America's the greatest land of all!" GM had also sponsored The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom. In the 1989 documentary Roger & Me, Boone stated that he first was given a Corvette from the Chevrolet product line, but after he and wife started having children, at one child a year, GM supplied him with a station wagon as well. Boone, who has endorsed an indeterminate number of products and services over the course of his career, said that more people identified him with Chevrolet than any other product.

Starting in the late 1950s, Boone and his family were residents of Leonia, New Jersey.

Many of Boone's hit singles were R&B covers by Black artists. These included: "Ain't That a Shame" by Fats Domino; "Tutti Frutti" and "Long Tall Sally" by Little Richard; "At My Front Door " by the El Dorados; and the blues ballads "I Almost Lost My Mind" by Ivory Joe Hunter, "I'll be Home" by The Flamingos and "Don't Forbid Me" by Charles Singleton. Boone also wrote the lyrics for the instrumental theme song for the movie Exodus, which lyrics he titled "This Land Is Mine."

As a devout Christian, Boone refused songs and movie roles that he felt might compromise his standards—including a role with sex symbol Marilyn Monroe. In his first film, April Love, he refused to give co-star and love interest Shirley Jones an onscreen kiss, because the actress was married in real life.

He appeared as a regular performer on Arthur Godfrey and his Friends from 1955 through 1957, later hosted his own The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom, on Thursday evenings. In the early 1960s, he began writing a series of self-help books for adolescents, including Twixt Twelve and Twenty. The British Invasion ended Boone's career as a hitmaker, though he continued recording throughout the 1960s. In the 1970s, he switched to gospel and country, and he continued performing in other media as well. He is currently working as the disc jockey of a popular oldies radio show and runs his own record company which provides an outlet for new recordings by 1950s greats who can no longer find a place with the major labels.

In 1953, shortly before he turned 19, Boone married Shirley Lee Foley , daughter of country music great Red Foley and his wife, singer Judy Martin. They had four daughters: Cheryl Lynn, Linda Lee, Deborah Ann , and Laura Gene. During the late 1950s, he made regular appearances on ABC-TV's Ozark Jubilee, hosted by his father-in-law. In the 1960s and 1970s the Boone family toured as gospel singers and made gospel albums, such as The Pat Boone Family and The Family Who Prays.

In the early 1970s, Boone founded the record label Lion & Lamb Records. It featured artists such as Pat, The Pat Boone Family, Debby Boone, Dan Peek, DeGarmo & Key, and Dogwood.

In 1978, Boone became the first target in the Federal Trade Commission's crackdown on false claim product endorsements by celebrities. He had appeared with his daughter Debby in a commercial to claim that all four of his daughters had found a preparation named Acne-Statin a "real help" in keeping their skin clear. The FTC filed a complaint against the manufacturer, contending that the product did not really keep skin free of blemishes. Boone eventually signed a consent order in which he promised not only to stop appearing in the ads but to pay about 2.5% of any money that the FTC or the courts might eventually order the manufacturer to refund to consumers. Boone said, through a lawyer, that his daughters actually did use Acne-Statin, and that he was "dismayed to learn that the product's efficacy had not been scientifically established as he believed."

 Later career
In 1997, Boone released In a Metal Mood: No More Mr. Nice Guy, a collection of heavy metal covers. To promote the album, he appeared at the American Music Awards in black leather. He was then dismissed from Gospel America, a TV show on the Trinity Broadcasting Network. After making a special appearance on TBN with the president of the network, Paul Crouch, and his pastor, Jack Hayford, many fans accepted his explanation of the leather outfit being a "parody of himself". Trinity Broadcasting then reinstated him, and Gospel America was brought back.

In 2003, the Nashville Gospel Music Association recognized his gospel recording work by inducting him into its Gospel Music Hall of Fame. In September 2006, Boone released Pat Boone R&B Classics - We Are Family, featuring cover versions of 11 R&B hits, including the title track, plus "Papa's Got A Brand New Bag", "Soul Man", "Get Down Tonight", "A Woman Needs Love", and six other classics. In 2007, Boone was inducted into the Hit Parade Hall of Fame as well as the Christian Music Hall of Fame.

Boone and his wife, Shirley, live in Los Angeles. His one-time neighbor was Ozzy Osbourne and his family. A sound-alike of Boone's cover of Osbourne's song "Crazy Train" became the theme song for The Osbournes . Osbourne once said that Boone "was the nicest bloke you could ever have as a neighbour and never complained once" about living next door to their less-than-traditional family.

On December 30, 2010, Glenn W. Milligan of Liquid Metal Holdings said the Pat Boone Family Theater would open in May 2011 in the former NASCAR Cafe at Broadway at the Beach in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. With 600 seats, the Boone Theater will be smaller than many of the resort's attractions, but Milligan says this may be an advantage. Other performers were to include illusionist Morgan Strebler, the 2011 Merlin Award winner, though in September 2011 it was announced he would be replaced. The economic crisis has been one of the reasons for delays, but on May 25, 2011, the theater received the first of several needed permits from the city. The $1 million project was set to be complete in August 2011, but the opening date was delayed twice. At a news conference on June 2, which included a performance by Strebler, theater officials said Boone would attend the opening and perform 14 times each year. Other entertainment will include gospel music concerts and Christmas shows. The theater will have a Boone museum with the singer's memorabilia.

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  Played TV shows  

  Albums 

  Tracks  

Name Duration Released
Smoke on the Water 03:53 05/12/2000
The Wind Cries Mary 04:12 05/12/2000
You've Got Another Thing Comin' 04:19 05/12/2000
Paradise City 04:41 05/12/2000
Holy Diver 04:44 05/12/2000
Enter Sandman 03:52 05/12/2000
Love Hurts 04:57 05/12/2000
No More Mr. Nice Guy 03:06 05/12/2000
Panama 05:15 05/12/2000
It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll) 04:37 05/12/2000
Crazy Train 04:32 05/12/2000

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  Sources

Whole or part of the information contained in this card come from the Wikipedia article "Pat Boone", licensed under CC-BY-SA full list of contributors here.