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Eddy Arnold Dead at 89

Posted: May 08, 2008

Eddy Arnold died this morning (May 8, 2008) in Tennessee. The Country Music Hall of Famer was 89 years old.

Growing up in Spartanburg, SC, I recall Eddy Arnold being among the first artists I was ever exposed to. He was one of my Mother's favorites, along with Marty Robbins and Gentleman Jim Reeves.

Arnold had one of the smoothst voices in country music, and was one of the first to mix country and pop music together, paving the way for future success by people like Kenny Rogers and Willie Nelson.

Eddy "The Tennessee Plowboy" Arnold had a long and highly successful career, rcking up 27 number one hits.

His first 57 songs reached the Billboard Top 10 between 1945 and 1954. His first release, "Each Minute Seems a Million Years," went to number 5 in 1945. His first number 1 was "What is Life Without Love" in 1947. He ruled the number 1 spot for 21 weeks in 1947 with "I'll Hold You in My Heart (Till I Can Hold You in My Arms)."

Many of Arnold's hits crossed over to the pop charts as well. He expanded his audience by hosting a segment of the Opry and the Checkerboard Jamboree with Ernest Tubb. Arnold left the Opry in 1948 over a salary dispute and then worked live for CBS Network series Hometown Reunion. He also appeared in two films, "Feudin' Rhythm" and "Hoedown" in 1949 and 1950.

Arnold had several television shows as well, hosting summer replacement series in 1952 and 1953 along with "Eddy Arnold Time" and "The Eddy Arnold Show."

A slump in country in the late 1950s led to slower sales for Arnold, and he considered retiring, but he struck with it and went for more of a pop sound. Arnold's career picked up again with such hits as "What's He Doing in My World" and "Make the World Go Away," both hitting number 1 in 1965. When I remember Eddy, it is these two songs I think of first. It don't get any smoother. We'll miss Eddy Arnold for sure, but the great thing is, he will live on forever through his recordings. We should all be so lucky.

Keep it Real. Keep it Southern.


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countryrocker1967 says...

I met Eddy a few years ago myself at Nashville Deli at breakfast. He asked me to join him and I did. A sweeter man has never lived. RIP Eddy.

palmettopirate says...

Living in Music City I have had the honor of meeting a lot of country stars but I never will forget the day I met Eddie Arnold, Chet Atkins, and Porter Wagoner all having dinner together at Arnolds Country Kitchen here in Nashville while on my lunch break one day a few years back. They were all very gracious to a star struck country boy from South Carolina. Thanks for the memories guy's !

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