Over 6 decades he charted the impressive number of more than 120 hit singles of various music genres across the world with songs such as “The Gambler” and “Islands In The Stream”
Kenny Rogers turns 81
There aren’t too many country singers that are able to cross successfully from that niche, that is so particular of the North American audiences, into the worldwide mainstream of Pop music charts, but for Kenny Rogers, that was never a problem. Born Kenneth Ray Rogers on August 21, 1938 in Houston, Texas, he started his career back in the 1950’s and even had a minor hit in 1957 called “That Crazy Feeling”. During the 1960’s he formed the acclaimed The First Edition, that successful blend country and pop music, finding their way quickly into the mainstream during the late 60’s. The star of The First Edition was of course Kenny Rogers, and because of his increasing popularity, the band was renamed Kenny Rogers and The First Edition. After disbanding in 1976, Rogers launched his solo career, that included strings of hit singles and songs worldwide. Among some of his most well known work are the albums “The Gambler” and “Kenny”, best sellers and among the 200 Most Influential Country Albums Ever. The song “Lucille” was Roger’s first big hit worldwide in 1977, and it was followed by “The Gambler” in 1978 and the “Coward Of The County” in 1979 as well as several duets, including the ones with Kim Carnes, “Don’t Fall In Love With A Dreamer,” in 1980, “Islands in the Stream,” with Dolly Parton, Bob Seger’s cover “We’ve Got Tonight,” with Sheena Easton in 1983 (an international smash hit) and ” What About Me?” a trio performance with James Ingram and Kim Carnes. Kenny Rogers carrer spanned for over six decades and it was awarded countless times by AMA’s, Grammys, ACM’s and CMA’s, as well as a lifetime achievement award for a career spanning six decades in 2003 amont several others. He has charted the impressive number of more than 120 hit singles of various music genres across the world, and in 1986, voted the “Favorite Singer of All-Time” by readers of both USA Today and People. In 2015, Rogers announced his farewell tour, titled The Gambler’s Last Deal. He stated his intention to retire from touring at its completion, although he is considering the possibility of recording another studio album. His final concert in Nashville took place on October 25 at the Bridgestone Arena where he was joined by an array of guest artists including the special appearance by long-time friend Dolly Parton, who performed “You Can’t Make Old Friends” and “Islands in the Stream” with Rogers for the final time. Today he turns 81.
Watch the 1978 music video “The Gambler” by Kenny Rogers
Also watch: Another one of Kenny Roger’s biggest hits, “We’ve Got Tonight”, in duet with Sheena Easton, Live in Greensboro, NC, 1983
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