Thursday, June 9, 2011

Ben E. King

Ben E. King
What do you think when someone says Ben E. King ? The first thing that comes to my mind is "Stand By Me". Before I go any further I have to get this up front. I am a fan of Ben E. King's music as much today as back when.

Today, I was walking through a big box store. Through the shopper's haze, I heard the overhead speakers start up with "This Magic Moment". I sang along in my head. Without realizing it I must have begun singing aloud. A well dressed gent of some 65 plus years walks by and says, "hell of a song". 

Ben E. King

I realized he had heard me and I was embarrassed. I said "you bet.  Who's doing that song". He didn't bat and eye, saying, "The Drifters". I said, "Oh, Clyde McPhatter" ? He says "I think it's Ben E. King". He walked away and I never saw him again. Man !!  Ben E. King must have made a heck of an impression on that guy. I came home and checked it out on the computer. He was right and the funny part was, Ben E. King was my next on my list of 1961 stories.   

Ben E. King

But that's the kind of impact Mr. King's voice has on people. Of course, the movie, "Stand By Me" didn't hurt his reputation with the younger generation. They will always think of that melodious voice associated with the movie. 

Here's a little information and  links for all you ever wanted to know about Ben E. King.

Wiki says from 1959 to 1986 Ben E. King had 25 Top 40's, 12 Top 10's and 5 Number One's in the pop field. That includes his time with the Drifters. When the British invasion arrived in 64' his sales dropped like everyone else. At that point he moved over to his old standby the Rhythm and Blues charts.

Ben E. King "Stand By Me"

"Stand by Me" was named one of the "Songs of the Century" by Recording Industry Association of America.

"Stand by Me", "There Goes My Baby", "Spanish Harlem", were all included in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll.

Ben E. King

All three songs were given a Grammy Hall of Fame Award.

Ben is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland as a member of the Drifters. He has been nominated for membership but not selected. I wonder what it takes to meet their requirements. Let's see Abba but not Ben E. King. Right.

Ben E. King

Ben is still active in music and with his foundation. What a talent. One of the finest voices ever in R&B or Rock. When two old guys stand around in a store, talking about your 50 year old song, you have to be very, very special. That alone should qualify you for:

                                         THE FAN'S 


               Welcome Mr. Ben E. King !!!!

                  Web site       Info          Video     Foundation

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