The Sunday Morning Country Classic Spotlight shines bright on Ray Price this Sunday, December 11th at 11 am. You can find us at 98.1 FM Minnesota’s New Country, online and on your mobile device.

I always felt that Ray Price was one of country music’s great innovators. He changed the sound of country music from the 1950s until he passed away December 16, 2013 at age 87 from cancer.

After finishing a stint with the Marine Corps, he took his career to singing.  He roomed with Hank Williams, Senior, for a short period of time in Nashville in the early 1950’s.  When Williams died, Price managed his band, the "Drifting Cowboys" --  but had little success.

In 1953, Price formed his own band, "The Cherokee Cowboys."  Among its members --   Willie Nelson, Roger Miller, Johnny Paycheck and others.  Some of his hit recordings were “Crazy Arms,” “Heartaches by the Number,” “Night Life” and “For the Good Times,” a huge number one hit in July of 1970.  He was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1996.  Price continued to record and tour well into his mid-80s.

He married twice -- he and his first wife divorced in the late 1960’s. He married his second wife, Janie, on June 11, 1970. They remained together until his death.  A son from his first marriage, Cliff also survives.

Ray Price was interred at Restland Memorial Park in Dallas, Texas.  He is gone but his music still lives on.


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