Johnny Burnette, was born on March 25, 1934 in Memphis, Tennessee. Johnny, brother Dorsey and Paul Burlison were rockabilly pioneers when they formed the Johnny Burnette Rock & Roll Trio. Their seven records on the Coral Records label 1956-1957 are legendary. He also recorded in 1961 with brother Dorsey as The Texans in 1961. He is the father of singer Rocky Burnette.
His first big hit records charted on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1960. They were recorded for Liberty Records. The first hit single in Johnny’s career is his classic recording DREAMIN’. The single record charted on July 25, 1960 and became a huge hit, peaking at #11. The single remained on the Hot 100 for 15 weeks. The flip-side a rocker, CINCINNATI FIREBALL did not chart.
On October 31, 1960 Johnny’s second and biggest hit record made its Billboard Hot 100 debut. YOU’RE SIXTEEN began its run up the Hot 100, charting at #8 and remaining on the chart for 15 weeks. The flip-side of the single is I BEG YOUR PARDON it did not chart. Ringo Starr would have a huge #1 hit with the song in 1973. Johnny Burnette would chart three more Hot 100 hits in 1961 and 1962.
Johnny Burnette died in a boating accident on Clear Lake in California in August of 1964 at the age of 30. His music continues to be played on oldies radio. He wrote many hits for Ricky Nelson, including the classic BELIEVE WHAT YOU SAY. Johnny Burnette is a classic singer/songwriter and early pioneer from the “GOLDEN ERA OF ROCK AND ROLL”.
Till the next time—Joe