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Eddy Arnold

Eddy Arnold moved hillbilly music to the city, creating a sleek sound that relied on his smooth voice and occasionally lush orchestrations. In the process, he became the most popular country performer of the 20th century, spending more weeks at the top of the charts than any other artist. Arnold not only had 28 number one singles, he had more charting singles than any other artist. More than any other country performer of the postwar era, he was responsible for bringing the music to the masses, to people who wouldn't normally listen to country music. Arnold was initially influenced by cowboy singers like Gene Autry, but as his career progressed, he shaped his phrasing in the style of Pete Cassell. Nevertheless, he was more of a crooner than a hillbilly singer, which is a large reason why he was embraced by the entertainment industry at large, and frequently crossed over to the pop charts. Arnold's career ran strong into the '90s. Although his records didn't dominate the charts like they did during the '40s and '50s, he continued to fill concert halls and reissues of his older recordings sold well.

Raised on a farm in Tennessee, Arnold was given a guitar at the age of ten by his mother. His father, who had played fiddle and bass, died the following year. Arnold left school so he could help out on the farm. However, he began playing dances whenever he had a chance. Several years later, he made his first radio appearance on a station in Jackson. Arnold then moved to St. Louis, where he played in nightclubs with fiddler Speedy McNatt. In St. Louis, Arnold landed a regular spot on WMPS Memphis, spending six years at the radio station. Through the show, the singer earned a dedicated following of fans.

During World War II, Eddy Arnold became part of R.J. Reynolds' Camel Caravan, which featured Redd Stewart, Pee Wee King's Golden West Cowboys, Minnie Pearl, and San Antonio Rose. The troupe performed for U.S. troops throughout America, as well some selected dates in Panama. After the Camel Caravan, Arnold became the featured singer in the Golden West Cowboys while they performed on the Grand Ole Opry. At first, he appeared under the name the Tennessee Plowboy, a nickname that followed him throughout his career.

Arnold recorded his first single, "Mommy Please Stay Home With Me," in 1944 for RCA Victor. At RCA, the singer received the guidance of the label's A&R head, Steve Sholes, which proved to be invaluable help for his career.

Eddy Arnold pursued a solo career in 1945, the same year he got married to Sally Gayhart. "Each Minute Seems a Million Years," released on RCA's Bluebird division that same year, became his first charting record, peaking in the Top Five. Arnold's career really took off the following year, when "That's How Much I Love You" peaked in the Top Three, staying there for 16 weeks and selling over 650,000 copies; its flip side, "Chained to a Memory," also climbed into the Top Three. Arnold followed the single's success with two number one hits in 1947, "What Is Life Without Love" and "It's a Sin." However, that didn't compare to the success of his next record, "I'll Hold You in My Heart (Till I Can Hold You in My Arms)." The single spent 46 weeks on the charts, with 21 of those weeks spent at the top; it also crossed over to the pop charts, reaching the Top 30. In the process, it became the number one single of the decade.

"I'll Hold You in My Heart" confirmed that Arnold had become a country superstar, as did the performance of his 1948 singles. All of his nine singles went into the Top Five, and five of them went to number one, including "Anytime," "What a Fool I Was," "Texarkana Baby," "Just a Little Lovin' (Will Go a Long, Long Way)," "My Daddy Is Only a Picture," and "Bouquet of Roses," which stayed at the top for 19 weeks. In total, Arnold racked up over 40 weeks on top of the charts during 1948, becoming the number one country star in America. He headlined all the radio shows and concerts he appeared on, and he was in demand throughout the nation. By the end of the year, Colonel Tom Parker had become his manager; Parker would later become Elvis Presley's manager. Throughout 1949, he continued to dominate the charts, releasing a succession of Top Ten singles, including the number one "Don't Rob Another Man's Castle," "One Kiss Too Many," "I'm Throwing Rice (At the Girl I Love)," and "Take Me in Your Arms and Hold Me."

Eddy Arnold became a familiar face not only to country fans but also to the general public in the early '50s. He toured all of the U.S., as well as several foreign countries. All of the major television shows of the era, including The Perry Como Show and Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts, featured the singer. Indeed, he became so popular that he was the first country star to have his own television show, Eddy Arnold Time. The show originally aired on NBC, but it later moved to ABC. Through all of this, his string of Top Ten hits remained unbroken, even though he didn't have another crossover pop hit until 1954. Nevertheless, the sheer amount of country hits was overwhelming: In 1950 he had seven, and 13 in 1951 (including the number ones "There's Been a Change in Me," "Kentucky Waltz," "I Wanna Play House With You," "Easy on the Eyes," and "A Full Time Job"). The hits, including "Eddy's Song" (composed of the titles of previous hits), "How's the World Treating You?," "I Really Don't Want to Know," "My Everything," "The Cattle Call," "That Do Make It Nice," "Just Call Me Lonesome," and "The Richest Man (In the World)," continued to come in force until 1956.

Between 1956 and 1964, Arnold continued to chart, but he wasn't reaching the Top Ten at the same frequency of the previous decade. During this time, his style was beginning to change, as he was shedding his rootsy style for a slicker, polished sound that was more appropriate for urban settings than rural territories. Arnold became a crooner, complete with subdued instrumental backings, highlighted by gentle steel guitars and the occasional orchestra. The change in musical direction was a major commercial success, sparking a new era of chart dominance that began in 1965 with "What's He Doing in My World." Not only did he return to the top of the country charts, he once again crossed over to the pop charts. Arnold's second streak of major hits ran until 1969. During this time, he earned several number one and Top Ten singles, all of which were pop hits as well, including "Make the World Go Away," "I Want to Go With You," "The Last Word in Lonesome," "Somebody Like Me," "Lonely Again," "Turn the World Around," "Then You Can Tell Me Goodbye," "They Don't Make Love Like They Used To," and "Please Don't Go."

In the early '70s, Arnold continued to appear on the country charts, although his pop hits dried up. The singer signed with MGM in 1972, ending 27 straight years at RCA. Arnold spent only four years at MGM, landing only one major hit, 1974's "I Wish That I Had Loved You Better." Returning to RCA in 1976, he closed out the decade with two hits -- "Cowboy" (1976) and "If Everyone Had Someone Like You" (1978). Arnold managed to put two songs into the Top Ten in 1980 ("Let's Get It While the Gettin's Good," "That's What I Get for Loving You"), making him one of the few artists who charted in five different decades. He continued to record in the '90s, although without charting a hit single. Nevertheless, his concert and television appearances remained popular.

Beginning in the '60s, Eddy Arnold was bestowed with a numerous amount of awards. In 1966, he was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. The following year, he was the first Entertainer of the Year named by the CMA. The ACM gave him the Pioneer Award in 1984; three years later, the Songwriters Guild gave him its President's Award. Perhaps the truest gauge of his success is his record sales. Over the course of his career, he has sold over 85 million records, making him one of the most successful artists of the 20th century. His 100th album, After All These Years, was released in 2005 by RCA Records. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

Did Eddie Arnold sing Gone. One of my old time favorites.
It doesn't matter how young or old you are. If it's good music or s**tty music that you like. So be it. I'm only 45 years old. My grandparents always listened to country and bluegrass. They got me hooked on the old country and bluegrass music. And I love it. Even the new country that radio stations are playing.
millerkuhs68
To Mr Russell Crow:
Please take your style and go to your council...
and let us enjoy our old country.
jackwoods927
From those of us who made this country the best place in the world to live, I just hope and pray that this younger inheritors learn from this music learn something that could guide them in life and give them some morality. Just a thought from someone who has been here a while.
Maybe Pandora thought your station needed a little style?
I'm not going to comment on Eddy Arnold or his music, but what the heck is Pandora doing playing this on my Style Council station. The music and Eddy Arnold are not even closely related.
Love it and the memories growing up
It reminds of growing listening it with my mom
dheideman1
Hearing Eddie always reminds me of my own father, who always sang along when on of his songs would play. I really wish we could get his songs back on the radio more.
georgelowe19 3 6
My favorite singer of all times!
amazing singer
I loved Eddy Arnold for. Many years. Have many of his records. Liby
mschofie
Mr. Eddy Arnold sold over 85 million records, during his career. A career that spaned 7 decades. Nobody but Mr. Arnold has such numbers. Remember; Americans did not have the money for records in the 40's and 50's as they have had the last thirty years. Country Music's first crossover artist. RIP Eddy.
Love Eddy Arnold I even remember his TV show Eddy Arnold Time
He has one of the best artists for decades. HE AND..REAVES are are the best !
Keep on playing his his great songs!
Always loved Eddie Arnolds sweet voice! Especially make the world go away!
Hell of a singer.
I love Pandora!!! Finally I can hear some great singers from years gone by. I wish we had more like them. When I travel I load my car CD player with the oldies but goodies and just go walsin across Texas (with Bob Wills for starters) or I guess I should say Drivin' across Texas LOL
I am totally hooked on Pandora, It's fantastic.
marlenendale
I LOVE Pandora,,,,I t is the only place I can hear GOOD OLD COUNTRY MUSIC, Like Ray Price, Marty Robbins, Jim Reeves, Eddy Arnold and artists like I love.
Note to ahso; you complain because you can’t hear your particular song...since when did Pandora advertise itself as your personal ‘jukebox’? If you would take time to read the “About Pandora” section, you’d find this, in part “… It will quickly scan its entire world of analyzed music, almost a century of popular recordings - new and old, well known and completely obscure - to find songs with interesting musical similarities to your choice.” It is not your personal 'music genie'.

n303bab
i agree with john davis, you never cycle back to the original artist, its named george jones radio for a reason, pandora sucks, big fail
mickel2536
The remark at the top of the page says ployboy...th i n k it should be plowboy.
Pandora's great
ahso
Pandora sucks. Your not playing what I want to hear. I type in an artist or a song & I don't hear it. I've typed in Little Green Apples a dozen times, also the artist, & I still haven't heard it. I was considering subscribing to plus, but, certainly not at this rate.

John Davis
ahso@verizon . n e t
Country classics should be played on the radio.
I love his music and his voice is so soft and mellow, I can't sing but I sure do with him. lol
Eddy Arnold was my Dad's favorite - He reminds me of my Dad everytime I listen to him
As a child, I would hurry home to lunch so I could listen to Eddy. Every day I looked forward to "Lunch with Eddie"
mdunaj
Iv always been a fan
I had forgotten about how wonderful this artist really was. How could a person forget the contribution he made to country music or just plain American Music?
One of the finest voices in country music history
Grandma Faye Loved Eddy
monjocoff
Holds so many memories for me, love it.
oldgyrene
Love his cattle call. Wonder whatever happened to his boat.
bobshelby26
One of my very favorites
GREAT
econnelly1
Love Eddy Arnold, just old enough to remember the Camel Caravan and the war years. I think this country has lost its' bearings. Too many people think that they don't have to work for a living. Glad I'm toward the end of my journey. Will request one of Eddy Arnold's songs to be played at my funeral.
This is some good old music, they don't make them like this anymore
guyerp
I love to listen to his songs and have some of his CD's.
When I was a kid in the 1940's,I would listen over and over to an album Mom had called "Old Time Hits from the Hills" by Eddy Arnald and the Tennessee Plowboys every song is commited to my memory now.
bright.trudy
I tried to get Eddy for Mom. So far no success, but I did get me. Hubby
ssabo72944
Eddy Arnold had a top shelf voice. As smooth as silk.
the first song i ever heard eddy sing was mommy please stay home with me.i thought that was the prettest voice and song its what inspired me to learn to play the guitar and sing. i still sing eddy"s songs. wahoo
My wife and I were married Aug.2,1948, the following year I baught her an Eddy Arnold record as on of her Christmas gifts, we still have it and play it occasionally when I feel like digging up bones...Ray
When I was a high schooler back in the 60's, Eddie Arnold and Jim Reeves were my favorite two country artists. In fact, the first two albums I ever bought were by these two singers. Might as well throw in a third singer as well - Don Gibson. More than a half century later, they are still my favorite country artists.
I remember growing up my mom had a new love and it was'nt dad . Eddy seemed to have taken her heart we'd be doing homework songs such as wanna play house with you ,the last word in lonesome . I had great memories with Eddy my son showed me how to click onto Pandora. Like so many there memories will last forever .
I was born and grew up through the 50s and 60s, listened to early country and the beginnings of rock and roll...best of times for music and the U.S. Eddy Arnold was one of the smoothest voices of all
maxmabi777
I love any and everything Eddy Arnold ever sung. His voice was like hot maple syrup on warm pancakes! I even proposed to him one time in St. Louis, when he was at a signing in JC Penney's at South County Mall in 1966. He could have sung to me 24x7 and I would have never tired of it.
david.grant1
I am listening to my Crosby,Still s and Nash station and my question to Pandora is. How can you play a Eddy Arnold song ?
Eddy "FREEKIN" Arnold...Gim m e a break.
david.grant1
helllllllloo o o wilbur
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