Oregon Movies, A to Z

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Johnnie Ray, cont.

December 23rd, 2008 by Anne Richardson · No Comments · 1950's, Oregon composer, Oregon musician, Oregon singer

Here’s Johnnie Ray with his Flame Showbar mentors. Bandleader Maurice King, with whom Ray recorded his first records, went on to be a big part of the success of Motown Records as Berry Gordy’s musical director. Fellow singer LaVerne Baker (Jim Dandy, Tweedlee Dee) recognized Ray’s originality and encouraged him to be himself.

For more about Ray’s pioneering role as a white performer who ignored racial boundaries, read this appreciation.

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