My Kind of Country

Country music from a fan's point of view since 2008

BREAKING NEWS: Roy Clark dies at 85

This one hurts. Roy Clark passed away this morning due to complications from pneumonia at home in Tulsa, Okla. He was 85. Clark was not only a legend in country music but a major fixture on television, appearing for half a century as a main cast member on Hee Haw and frequent guest host of The Tonight Show, filling in for Johnny Carson. He’ll be best remembered for his songs, his outstanding comedic timing, and his brilliant musicianship.

Here are some career highlights:

A cover of Bill Anderson’s “The Tips of My Fingers” was his first chart hit, reaching #10 in 1963:

Clark released his signature song, “Yesterday When I Was Young,” in 1969. It would go on to peak at #9:

Clark reached #1 just once, with “Come Live With Me” in 1973:

Clark’s comedic timing, and his stellar musicianship are on full display in this clip from The Jimmy Dean Show:

Clark also had a line of Signature Guitars. You may remember this commercial he made in the 1990s:

Clark appeared in the star-studded opening of the 50th Annual CMA Awards in 2016, one of his last public appearances:

2 responses to “BREAKING NEWS: Roy Clark dies at 85

  1. Paul W Dennis November 16, 2018 at 12:11 am

    I had the good fortune to see Roy Clark at the Orange Blossom Opry in Weirsdale, FL about nine years ago. I don’t know if Roy was not well that day or if arthritis was becoming a problem but he let his band carry much of the show, particularly a talented young musician named Justin David. The 20 minutes or so that Roy actually performed and played his instruments was excellent, but he definitely did not have a lot of energy that day. His sense of humor was definitely intact

  2. Luckyoldsun November 16, 2018 at 2:57 am

    RIP Mr. Clark.
    I remember seeing him on the Tonight Show….with and without Johnny Carson.
    Carson used to frequently have guest hosts during that era, but not many country artists ever filled in for Johnny, and they were generally artists who crossed over into mainstream. The only ones I know of for sure other than Roy are Eddy Arnold, Tennessee Ernie Ford and Glenn Campbell.
    ..
    Here’s what appears to be a fairly recent clip of Roy Clark with Bill Anderson and Buck Trent celebrating Hee Haw.
    While Roy appears to be somewhat “out-of-it” during the interview (similar to what Paul describes above), when he gets to picking the banjo, he’s all business .

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