Billy Lee Riley

Genres: Country & Bluegrass Pop / Rock
Descriptive "tags": rockabilly rock and roll 50s rock n roll rock Powered by AudioScrobbler
Decades Active: 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s
Links online: Biography VIAF Wikipedia

Biography

5 October 1933, Pocahontas, Arkansas, USA. One of the unsung members of the early Sun Records roster, Billy Lee Riley’s recordings for the label remain among the most uninhibited rock ‘n’ roll sides to be released during the mid- to late 50s.

Of Irish-Indian parentage, Riley was raised in rural Arkansas and by the age of 10 was working in the cotton fields to help put food on the family table. His father introduced him to the harmonica and guitar and by the time Riley entered the army (illegally) at the age of 15, he was proficient on both instruments. He played in a hillbilly band during his stint in the army and carried on performing following his discharge in 1955. While holding down a number of menial jobs Riley gained valuable musical experience playing with the country bands C.D. Tennyson And The Happy Valley Boys and the KBTM Ranch Boys. He was then hired as vocalist with the Memphis, Tennessee-based Dixie Ramblers, and...

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