Ray Stevens Concert Pigeon Forge
Funny man Ray Stevens performs at Country Tonite in October 2015
The fall is a gorgeous time of the year to visit us in the Smoky Mountains – and if you’re around in early October, there’s a show that will be sure to tickle your funny bone.
Ray Stevens, the singer known for hits like “The Streak” and “Everything is Beautiful,” will perform at Pigeon Forge’s Country Tonite Theatre at 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 3, 2015
Stevens is a singer and composer who has also produced, arranged and played on the recordings of some of Nashville’s most revered performers.
Born in 1939 in the small cotton mill town of Clarkdale, Ga., his early influences came from the radio and jukebox at the village swimming pool where he spent most of his summers. When he was growing up, radio stations were diverse and played music of all different styles, and the variety of the jukebox exposed him to an eclectic selection of music.
Stevens began taking piano lessons at seven years old. By age 15, he was singing and playing piano in a band that played for the American Legion, the Elks Club, private parties and other venues. At age 17, he moved to Atlanta, where he met radio personality and Georgia Tech football broadcaster Bill Lowery.
Lowery had various shows; he had several different radio stations around town and had started a music publishing company. He was looking for talent to write songs, and Stevens made him a demo of the song “Silver Bracelet.” The song led to a contract with Prep Records, and Stevens later joined Capitol Records, its parent company.
“Jeremiah Peabody’s Poly Unsaturated Quick Dissolving Fast Acting Pleasant Tasting Green and Purple Pills” went to No. 35 on the pop charts in 1961. The next year, “Ahab the Arab” climbed to No. 5 on the pop charts.
Stevens occasionally sang with the Jordanaires and played on a session for Elvis Presley – he published “Way Down,” Elvis’s last hit before he died.
At Mercury Records, he recorded “Harry the Hairy Ape” and “Santa Claus is Watching You.”
He later joined Monument Records as a producer overseeing new artists, one of those being a young Dolly Parton.
“Everything is Beautiful” came from Barnaby Records and was his first No. 1 pop hit. It also scored him a Grammy Award for Male Vocalist of the Year.
“The Streak” was his second No. 1 pop hit. Later hits have included “Osama Your Mama,” “The Global Warming Song” and “Caribou Barbie.”
In 2007, Stevens decided to record exclusively for his own label, Clyde Records, Inc.
He calls his 2012 release of “Encyclopedia of Recorded Comedy Music,” a package of eight CDs with 96 songs he considers to be the greatest comedy songs of all time, his “labor of love.”
For more about the multi-talented Stevens’ career, visit www.raystevens.com.
Tickets for the show are $44.50 plus tax. For more information, visit Country Tonite Theater.
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