Pat Boone

Pat Boone will perform at Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theater in November.

The folks at Up Close Concert recently announced singer, actor, TV host, producer, songwriter, author, motivational speaker, TV pitchman, radio personality, record company head, TV station owner, sports team owner, family man and humanitarian Pat Boone will perform Nov. 6 at Dick Clark’s American bandstand Theater. 

“This is going to be so much fun,” Up Close Concerts Owner and Promoter Bob Cannella said. “Pat Boone has sold almost 50 million records, and he was the second biggest charting artist, behind only Elvis Presley, during the first decade of rock and roll.”

Boone, originally from Florida, was a small child when he and the family moved to Tennessee. He was soon drawn in by TV and radio appearances on such programs as “The Ted Mack Amateur Hour,” which dubbed Boone the first “American Idol,” an honor to be selected week after week by the viewers. He would be turned away from academics by record producer Randy Wood of Dot Records who thought Boone could sing rock ‘n’ roll music.

While Boone thought he was better suited to cover the “Perry Como, Eddie Fisher type of ballad,” Wood came up with a concept that would see him record cover versions of black R & B pioneers, such as Fats Domino and Little Richard. This concept turned Boone into a major star and led to Hollywood movies and his own TV shows, but also a bit of controversy. 

According to Boone’s bio, the critics accused him of ripping off the originators, an indictment still around today.

 “Everybody was aware that the original artists were not going to get played on 90 percent of the radio stations in America,” he told fellow label chief Joe Smith, according to the bio. “{They} hoped and prayed their records would get covered by someone who could get airplay. It meant…even more recognition in their own field. We were sort of like catalysts who helped R & B become rock ‘n’ roll.”

Even though there was controversy, there was also lots of early success. Boone continued at Columbia University, graduating Magna cum Laude in 1958, as well as appearing on the cover of TV Guide in his cap and gown. His recording career soon reached the stratosphere, and his original teen idol success and his “boy-next-door looks” soon attracted Hollywood’s interest, leading to him starring in 14 “major features, not rock ‘n roll quickies.” 

During his silver screen career, Boone co-starred with Ann-Margaret, James Mason, Debby Reynolds and Tony Curtis. In fact, Boone was considered “Elvis Presley’s main competition at this time.” Television soon came calling, and Boone became the youngest person to have his own weekly musical variety show, and was an in-demand guest star for other shows, both musical and dramatic. 

He also began producing other artists and also branched into gospel music, starting his first label, gospel-based Lamb & Lion Records. A Boone album of hymns sold three million, considerably opening up the market and allowing him to stay loyal to this genre all his life. He hosted a gospel TV program for a decade, as well as syndicated gospel music radio shows.

Later in his career, Boone was also fired from his job hosting a TV show, all because he “dabbled with the devil and recorded an album of … heavy metal music.”

According to his bio, it was not only the music but Boone’s appearance on the American Music Awards in black leather and fake tattoos promoting “In A Metal Mood,” which featured heavy metal songs given a “Pat Boone treatment.” 

The “gospel arena” who dropped him as host of that TV show didn’t get the joke, and it wasn’t until they listened to the music that it was “perfectly fine, and reinstated him.”

Throughout his successful recording career, Boone has racked up quite a few stats. From the 1950s on, he sold nearly 50 million records, snagged 38 Top 10 hits, and garnered several gold, and platinum records. He is No. 6 among artists with the most consecutive Top 10 hits, No. 10 with the most Top 40 hits and No. 16 on the list of the most No. 1 hits. 

Today Boone keeps connected o that 50s generation of “pre-boomers” and “boomers,” as he is national spokesman for the 60 Plus Association. He also works on two nationally syndicated radio shows, “The Music of Your Life” and “The Pat Boone Show,” which features contemporary gospel. 

“I was watching a video clip of Pat Boone with Dick Clark from 1958 the other day and I said to one of our crew, ‘Do you think after the TV show Pat was talking to Dick Clark backstage and said something like, ‘Hey, in 61 years I’ll probably be performing in Branson Missouri at a theater with your name on it?’’” Cannella said. “Okay, probably not, but it really is fascinating to think about how lucky we are to work with true legends of the entertainment business.”

In addition to Boone Nov. 6, Up Close Concerts and Dick Clark’s American Bandstand Theater are hosting an all ages show starring comedian Jim Breuer Sept. 22, followed by “Max Weinberg’s Jukebox Show” Oct. 2, Phil Vassar and Billy Yates Oct. 4, the Platters Oct. 9, Gary Lewis and the Playboys and the original lead singer of the Buckinghams Dennis Tufano and The Crystal’s lead singer Lala Brooks Oct. 12, as well as Moe Bandy and Joe Stampley Oct. 16, Mel “Sonny Boy” Tillis Jr. Oct. 23, Lee Greenwood Nov. 10, T.G. Sheppard Nov. 13. 

Crystal Gayle will present her Christmas show Nov. 20, 2019, followed by a Greenwood Christmas show Dec. 4.

Peter Noon with Herman’s Hermits along with special guest Mitch Ryder  perform Oct. 18 at the Welk Resort Theatre.

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