Ferlin Husky

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About Ferlin Husky

Ferlin Husky had three separate careers. Of the three, he was best known as a country-pop crooner of the late '50s, but he was also known as a honky tonk singer called Terry Preston and a country comic named Simon Crum. Following several sides under the Preston name, Husky came to prominence singing on Jean Shepard's number one "A Dear John Letter," yet he didn't have a hit of his own until 1955, when "I Feel Better All Over (More Than Anywhere's Else)" reached the country Top Ten. Around the same time, he started releasing records as Simon Crum. Ferlin racked up a string of hits during the late '50s, reaching a peak in 1957, when "Gone" spent ten weeks at number one and reached number four pop. That same year, he began an acting career with a spot on the Kraft Television Theatre program and the film Mr. Rock & Roll. In 1958, Crum had a number two hit with "Country Music Is Here to Stay." In 1960, the gospel song "Wings of a Dove" gave Husky his biggest hit, spending ten weeks at the top of the country charts. Despite its massive success, Husky couldn't sustain a presence on the country charts during the '60s. He remained a popular concert attraction, but he had no Top Ten hits between "Wings of a Dove" and "Once," which hit number four in 1966. A year after "Once," Ferlin had his final Top Ten hit with "Just for You." In the late '60s, Husky incorporated the slicker, heavily produced sounds of contemporary country-pop into his music, which resulted in his brief career revitalization. Husky kept racking up minor hits until 1975. In 1977, he had heart surgery and briefly retired from performing. During the '80s and '90s, he performed regularly at the Grand Ole Opry, as well as Christy Lane's Theater in Branson, Missouri. During the 2000s Husky suffered from severe cardiac problems, and was hospitalized for congestive heart failure and pneumonia in 2009. He died of cardiac arrest at a hospital in the Nashville area on March 17, 2011; Ferlin Husky was 85 years old. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine

Cantwell, MO, United States
December 3, 1925

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