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Statler Brothers Member, Country Hall of Famer Was 80 – Variety

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Harold Reid, the bass singer within the long-running nation vocal quartet the Statler Brothers, died Friday evening at age 80. A publish on the group’s website stated that Reid “had bravely endured an extended battle with kidney failure.”

The group had retired in 2002 after being collectively in varied configurations since 1955. They had been inducted into the Nation Music Corridor of Fame in 2008. Though their run of nation high 10 hits prolonged from the mid-’60s into the late ’80s, the Statler Brothers stay maybe best-remembered for his or her country-pop crossover hit “Flowers on the Wall,” and for a years-long affiliation with Johnny Money that included a stint on his community tv present within the late ’60s.

Nation music famous person Reba McEntire was amongst these mourning Reid’s demise. “The one, the one Harold Reid,” she tweeted Sunday. “We’ll always remember you. So many nice reminiscences, and I’ll always remember you giving me my very first Nation Music award. Love all the time, Reba.”

The Statler Brothers triumphed of their day by bringing a gospel quartet singing model into the realm of nation. Though their roots had been within the church and so they continued to sing gospel materials, clearly they’d branched out by the point they’d their first and most memorable hit in 1965 with the lovelorn “Flowers on the Wall,” which included an unforgettable line about “smoking cigarettes and watching Captain Kangaroo.”

That line was recited by Bruce Willis within the movie “Die Exhausting With a Vengeance,” and the music itself was re-popularized when Quentin Tarantino used it within the soundtrack for “Pulp Fiction.” Artwork Bell additionally used it as frequent theme music on his late-night radio present. Kurt Vonnegut Jr. lauded it as “a poem in regards to the finish of a person’s usefulness.” .In 1965, he single reached No. 2 on the nation chart and No. four on the pop chart, and was quickly coated by Nancy Sinatra. A remake by Eric Heatherly reached the nation high 10 35 years later, in 2000.

The group cracked the highest 10 a pair extra instances within the 1960s — as with the uniquely titled “You Can’t Have Your Kate and Edith, Too” — however discovered their subsequent biggest influence in 1970 with a music written by Reid, “Mattress of Rose’s.” The punctuation was deliberate, because the music offers with the younger narrator’s dalliance with a prostitute named Rose. In an unlikely utilization much like the renewed curiosity in “Flowers on the Wall” through “Pulp Fiction,” “Mattress of Rose’s” reached a brand new era a long time later by being included within the well-liked PlayStation sport “Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.”

The Statler Brothers went on to have a number of No. 1 nation hits, lastly reaching the highest with “Do You Know You Are My Sunshine” in 1978, adopted by “Elizabeth” in 1984 and “My Solely Love” and “Too A lot on My Coronary heart” in 1985. Their last charting single was in 1990.

“Harold Reid was a driving pressure in one in all nation music’s biggest quartets, ” stated Kyle Younger, CEO of the Nation Music Corridor of Fame and Museum. “He was additionally an amazing entertainer, and one of many world’s funniest individuals. For many years, he made us snicker and made us cry. As his alter ego, Lester ‘Roadhog’ Moran, would say, his contributions had been ‘mighty positive.’ We mourn his loss whereas we have fun a life well-lived.”

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The late Harold Reid and Jimmy Fortune of the Statler Brothers pose for a photograph on the 10th Annual ACM Honors at Ryman Auditorium, in Nashville
Sanford Myers/Invision/AP/Shutterstock

Opposite to impressions, there was nobody named Statler within the group, which was initially named the Kingsmen and, dealing with confusion with different acts sharing that identify, adopted a brand new one after seeing the Statler model on a field of tissues. Thee had been brothers, nonetheless: Don Reid was their lead singer, with older brother Harold taking the bass elements. Baritone Phil Balsley and tenor Lew DeWitt accomplished the quartet. Jimmy Fortune (pictured above with Reid in 2016) took DeWitt’s place after he fell ailing within the early ’80s.

Johnny Money gave them their large break when he came across them of their native Staunton, Virginia in 1864 and invited them to open for him on an upcoming tour — with out really listening to them sing, the story goes. They remained with him as a backing quarter and/or opening act for eight years and had been featured on ABC’s “The Johnny Money Present” from 1969-71.

The group had a prolific awards historical past. The Statler Brothers had been named vocal group of the 12 months 9 instances on the CMA Awards within the 1972-84 interval. Their three Grammys included a 1965 award within the long-retired class of finest new nation & Western artist. They received the American Music Award for favourite nation band for 3 years straight, in 1979-81. In 2007, they had been inducted into the Gospel Corridor of Fame, a 12 months earlier than their Nation Corridor of Fame honor. In 2016, the Academy of Nation Music, which had given them two ACM awards again within the ’70s, give the group the Cliffie Stone Pioneer Award.

After their 2002 retirement, Harold Reid lived quietly on an 85-acre farm in his native Virginia together with his spouse, Brenda.

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