Hello and thanks for stopping by. Ray Peterson was born in Denton, Texas on April 23, 1935. He started singing in his early teens. As a young boy he had to overcome polio. Ray later moved to Los Angeles, California and was signed to a recording contract by RCA Victor Records in 1958.
On May 18, 1959 Ray’s first hit made its debut on the Billboard Hot 100. THE WONDER OF YOU became a Top 40 hit, staying on the Hot 100 for 16 weeks and reaching #25. Ray’s next charted record came in November of 59′. GOODNIGHT MY LOVE (Pleasant Dreams) was at best a modest hit, reaching #64 on the Hot 100.
Ray would not chart another Hot 100 hit until June of 1960. That’s when his biggest record would become a radio favorite. The teenage tragedy car song, TELL LAURA I LOVE HER went Top 10 for Ray, reaching #7 and having a 14 week stay on the chart. Tell Laura I Love Her would be Ray’s last charted hit on RCA Victor.
In 1960 Ray Peterson formed his own record label, Dunes Records. His first release on his label would be the classic, CORINNA, CORINNA. Ray’s latest hit would make its chart debut on November 21, 1960 and would chart at a high of #9 on the Hot 100, with a 15 week stay on the Billboard chart. There would be one more Top 40 hit in Rays future. In July of 1961 the beautiful MISSING YOU would move onto the Hot 100 and settle in at #29. In December of 1961 Ray would chart, I COULD HAVE LOVED YOU SO WELL, produced by Phil Spector, it reached #57 on the chart. Ray’s last Hot 100 hit came in June of 1963, another tragedy song, GIVE US YOUR BLESSING, didn’t produce the results Tell Laura I Love Her did. Give Us Your Blessing reached #70 with only a 6 week run on the chart.
He moved to MGM records in 1964 and recorded a couple of albums for that label along with a few singles that failed to chart. Ray did very well on the oldies circuit as fans from all over the country came to see him perform his hits live. Ray Peterson was blessed with a four octave singing voice that was perfect for his live concerts.
Ray’s friend Elvis Presley recorded THE WONDER OF YOU in 1970. Elvis’s version (live version) reached #9 and sold over a million copies. Ray is a member of the Rockabilly Hall Of Fame. Ray’s voice was silenced on January 25, 2005 when at the age of 69 he died of cancer. Ray may be gone but the music and memories of this very humble and talented man, live on.
Till the next time—Joe