Monday, May 30, 2011

Marty Robbins

Marty Robbin's great western stories.

Who knows when crossover hits belong to one genre or another. Marty seemed to be a man who sang for the universe with no particular market in mind. I think country and western fans claimed him and with a certain air of legitimacy due to recording in Nashville. His record company certainly promoted him as country but his appeal was much, much broader. 

We young rock and rollers thought he was one of us. His "White Sport Coat and a Pink Carnation" was certainly a big hit in our world. He had lots of crossover hits. His fans ran the gamut. I think mostly, we loved the sound of his voice and the story he was telling.

Marty Robbins

But what the world will always remember will be his story telling ability. When he did the El Paso, western series, it was more like going to a movie in your head than listening to a record. Un-friggin-believeable story teller. Great musician.

Marty Robbins was not one to sit around Nashville or Phoenix. He took and active role in the young NASCAR racing series. He financed and helped build his own cars. He was a huge music star who loved to work on and drive 700 horse power race cars. He actually drove in 35 races placing in the Top 10 six times. Those were the rough and tumble years. 

Marty Robbin's and his race car

He ran Talladega without the safety restrictor plate. He said he just wanted  to see what it was like to lead the race. That little maneuver had him driving a race car at over 215 miles per hour. Marty did that was in the 70's when they had very little safety equipment. This guy was a definite adrenalin junkie.

Marty Robbins

Marty was one singer I could always just stop what I was doing and listen to his words and music. Still can. I will always be a huge fan of this man's talent.

Marty had two chart careers. Here is a little summation:

Pop Charts:   He Charted 34 Hits, he had 24 Top 100, he had 16 Top 40, 3 top 10's and one #1.

American Country Charts: Charted 85 Top 60 hits,  he had 65 Top 40's, then 44 Top 10's and 27 Top 5's with 17 Number one Country hits from 1952 until 1983.  

Marty Robbins

The only thing that stopped this string of hits was his death. He died of complications from heart surgery. He had multiple hits every year of the 31 years he was in the music business.

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