Hello, George Hamilton IV has had two recording careers, first as a teen pop star in 1956 and then as a top country artist in 1960. George was born on July 19, 1937 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. He toured with Buddy Holly, Gene Vincent and The Everly Brothers. George charted 40 country hits between 1960 and 1978.
His first hit record entered the Billboard Top 100 in November of 1956. “A ROSE AND A BABY RUTH” on ABC-Paramount Records was a big hit climbing the chart and peaking at #6. Earlier in 1956 the record was released on the Colonial Records label as George Hamilton IV and The Country Gentlemen. ABC-Paramount picked up the single and gave it the distribution to make it a hit. “A Rose And A Baby Ruth” sold over a million copies. The huge hit enjoyed a 20 week run on the Top 100.
George’s next record was “ONLY ONE LOVE”, it entered the Top 100 in February of 1957 and charted at #33. On December 2, 1957 “WHY DON’T THEY UNDERSTAND” made its Top 100 debut. It would become George’s second Top 10 hit when it peaked at #10 and had a run of 19 weeks on the chart. “NOW AND FOR ALWAYS” followed in March of 1958 and became a Top 30 hit, climbing the Top 100 chart to #25. The follow-up record in June of ’58 was “I KNOW WHERE I’M GOIN'” and it stopped just short of the Top 40 at #43.
In December of 1958 George, Paul Anka and Johnny Nash, all ABC-Paramount recording stars at that time had a hit with “THE TEEN COMMANDMENTS” a song that was a guide for the teenagers of the day. “The Teen Commandments” charted at #29 on the Billboard Hot 100. George would have one more Hot 100 single on ABC-Paramount, “GEE” entered the chart in August of 1959 only reaching #73, should have charted higher because it was a good record.
George would have one more Hot 100 hit and that would be his classic recording of “ABILENE” on RCA Victor Records. “Abilene” would peak at #15 on the Hot 100 and continue to chart for 14 weeks. On the Billboard Country chart “Abilene” would be a #1 song for 4 weeks and become his biggest hit.
I still get requests for George’s, “A Rose And A Baby Ruth” along with “Why Don’t They Understand” and “Abilene” these songs have become oldies radio standards. A good song just lives on and on.
With sadness..George Hamilton IV passed away on September 18, 2014 at the age of 77. Thank You for the music and the memories.