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Live in Texas: Jerry Lee Lewis

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Introducing a Little Rock 'n' Roll: Jerry Lee Lewis!

 

It's Jerry Lee Lewis here with you tonight! Jerry Lee Lewis is a colorful American rock and roll singer/songwriter legend.  As Rock and Roll's first great wild man, he's made a name for himself as "The Killer". What a name right?

Jerry Lee Lewis was born in September 29, 1935 to a poor family in Louisiana. His family pedigree included cousins musical showman Mickey Gilley and TV evangelist Jimmy Swaggert.  With those kind of roots, it was natural for Jerry Lee to play piano at an early age.   His main influence as a child was Moon Mullican.

Jerry Lee was enrolled in the Southwest Bible Institute (now Southwestern Assemblies of God University) right here in Waxahachie,Texas. His parents sold the family piano for tuition so that young Jerry could focus on his evangelical songs. Unfortunately, after a questionable performance with a little too much boogie woogie, he was expelled from school. Jerry Lee went home to play in clubs around Ferriday and Natchez Mississippi, becoming one with the rock and roll sound that was sweeping the nation. Trying to reach for the stars, he was slapped down by the Grand Ole Opry. He eventually switched to playing guitar in hopes of a becoming a success.

Jerry Lee traveled to Memphis,  to audition for  Sun Records in 1956. There he managed to record his first few songs, playing as a solo artist and as a session musician. As an  artist in this genre he began to incorporate piano and was given a little more opportunity. His first success was playing an impromptu jam session with Elvis Presley. Elvis just happened to drop by the recording studio when Lewis was in. The recordings were later made into an album called "Million Dollar Quartet". He then starting breaking ground with his own singles, advancing his career forward. He began selling more records than Elvis Presley at the time. His success died down however, because of the public outcry stirred by the brief marriage he had with his 13 year-old cousin.

Yet despite the scandal, Jerry Lee was determined to regain his musical popularity back. After a few years of struggle, he made the switch to country music. One of his greatest hits during this period was "Another Place, Another Time". This brought some fire back into his career and finally hit the top of country charts. His #1 country hits are "To Make Love Sweeter For You", "There Must Be More to Love Than This", "Would You Take Another Chance on Me" and "Me and Bobby McGee".

Near the end of his career,Jerry Lee had a lifetime of success behind his name. He created a dozen gold records in both country and rock and roll, won Grammy awards, including a Lifetime Achievement Award. In 1986, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Jerry Lee Lewis is the last surviving member of the Sun Record's Million Dollar Quartet.

He has been married seven times and has a total of 6 children, two of which passed away in unfortunate accidents.

Discoraphy:

Albums:

  • (1964) Golden Hits of Jerry Lee Lewis - #40
  • (1964) The Greatest Live Show on Earth - # 32
  • (1965) The Return of Rock - #64
  • (1973) The Session - #37
  • (1986) Class of '55 - #87
  • (1994) Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On - #62
  • (1995) Young Blood - #31
  • (2006) Last Man Standing - #26
  • (2010) Mean Old Man - #30

Singles:

  • (1957) Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On - #3
  • (1957) Great Balls of Fire - #2
  • (1957) You Win Again - #95
  • (1958) Breathless - #7
  • (1958) Break Up - #52
  • (1958) I'll Make It All Up to You - #85
  • (1959) I'll Sail My Ship Alone - #93
  • (1959) Lovin' Up a Storm - #81
  • (1959) Let's Talk About Us - #76
  • (1961) What'd I Say - #25
  • (1962) Sweet Little Sixteen - #95
  • (1962) How's My Ex Treating You - #98
  • (1963) Good Golly Miss Molly - #99
  • (1964) I'm On Fire - # 98
  • (1964) Hi Heel Sneakers - #91
  • (1968) Another Place, Another Time - #97