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Eddy Arnold Obituary (May 15, 1918 – May 8, 2008)


Eddy Arnold

Eddy Arnold

Jolene Downs
Updated May 09, 2008

"Make The World Go Away" is exactly what Eddy Arnold did the minute he walked on stage or stepped behind the microphone. Country music has now lost one of the most recognizable voices ever. He passed away on May 8th, 2008, but his legacy will continue on.

He was born Richard Edward Arnold on May 18th, 1918 in Henderson, Tennessee. His first radio appearance was in 1936, and the rest is history. One of his first actual jobs was working for Pee Wee King's band as a lead vocalist. By 1943, Mr. Arnold was performing on the Grand Ole Opry. 1944 brought on another big milestone. He signed with RCA Victor, but did not have huge success until 1946 when "That's How Much I Love You" was released. Mr. Arnold's music never did fit the typical mold of his peers. It was not "twangy" or "whiney." It was geared more towards love and the sound was pure. Once he hired Colonel Tom Parker as his manager, his career shot to a whole new level. He started making television appearances and doing sold out concerts in New York, Hollywood, and eventually Las Vegas. With the Rock and Roll sound of the 1950's, his record sales started to decline, but that didn't keep him down for long.

By the 1960's, Mr. Arnold teamed up with legendary producer Chet Atkins and the outcome was the biggest hit of his career, "Make The World Go Away. This tune featured Eddy on the vocals, Chet on the guitar and legendary piano player, Floyd Cramer. Other hits include "Cattle Call," "Tips Of My Fingers," "Turn The World Around," "Tennessee Stud," "Just Call Me Lonesome," and countless others.

Eddy Arnold was inducted to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1966, and was the first Country Music Association's "Entertainer Of The Year." He went on to win countless other awards, including the Academy Of Country Music's "Pioneer Award." County Music Television named him number 22 on the 40 Greatest Men Of Country Music. Eddy Arnold officially retired in May 1999, but in 2005 he released his final album, After All These Years.

Mr. Arnold's wife Sally passed away in March, 2008. They are both survived by their two children. Although country music will never be the same, there is no telling where it would be now without the music of Eddy Arnold. He will truly be missed.

A public viewing in the Country Music Hall of Fame rotunda is scheduled for Tues., May 13 from 5-9 p.m., and Wed., May 14 from 9 a.m.-noon. The funeral service will be open to the public, and will be on Wednesday, May 14th at 2:00 pm at the Ryman Auditorium. The burial will be private.

Download some of Eddy Arnold's Most Popular Songs:

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