Leroy Van Dyke

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Leroy Van Dyke
Birth nameLeroy Frank Van Dyke
Born (1929-10-04) October 4, 1929 (age 94)
Mora, Missouri, U.S.
  • Singer
  • guitarist
  • Vocals
  • guitar
Years active1956–present

Leroy Frank Van Dyke (born October 4, 1929) is an American country music and honky-tonk singer and guitarist, best known for his hits "The Auctioneer" (1956) and "Walk on By" (1961).


Van Dyke was born in Mora, Missouri. He lived in Spencer, Wisconsin, and graduated from the University of Missouri majoring in agricultural journalism.[1] He was catapulted into country music fame in 1956 with his composition "The Auctioneer", co-written with Buddy Black, which sold over 2.5 million records.[1] He wrote the song about the life of his cousin, National Auctioneers Association Hall of Famer Ray Sims, also a Missourian. Van Dyke had the lead role of a budding country music performer in the 1967 movie What Am I Bid? in which Sims played himself as an auctioneer.[1]

In his 50 years-plus career, Van Dyke has recorded more than 500 songs, dozens of them making the charts. His record of "Walk on By" (1961) was named by Billboard magazine in 1994 as the biggest country single of all time, based on sales, plays, and weeks in the charts.[2] It stayed at number one in the U.S. country chart for 19 weeks, and in all, charted for 42 weeks, reaching number five on the pop listings. It sold more than 1.5 million copies.[1]

Other Van Dyke hits were "If a Woman Answers", "Black Cloud", "Big Man in a Big House", "Anne of a Thousand Days", "Happy to Be Unhappy", "Night People", "Be a Good Girl", "Dim Dark Corner", "Five Steps Away", "How Long Must You Keep Me a Secret", "Afraid of a Heartache", "Big Wide Wonderful World of Country Music", "Birmingham", "Just a State of Mind", "Mr. Professor", "My World Is Caving In", "The Other Boys Are Talking", "Poor Guy", "Roses from a Stranger", "Texas Tea", "Who’s Gonna Run the Truck Stop in Tuba City When I’m Gone", "Wrong Side of the Tracks", "Your Daughter Cried All Night", "Your Money", and "The Life You Offered Me".

In the UK Singles Chart Van Dyke had two hits: "Walk on By" reached number five in February 1962, and "Big Man in a Big House" made number 34 in May that year.[3]

He was a cast member in the late 1950s on Ozark Jubilee, and was co-host, with Bill Mack, of the Southern Baptist Radio/TV Commission-produced Country Crossroads radio show for 10 years, and was joined by a third co-host Jerry Clower. It became the most widely syndicated radio show in country music history.[citation needed]

Van Dyke continues a performance schedule, traveling from his office/home complex on his 1,000-acre (4 km2) ranch in west-central Missouri near Sedalia, Missouri. He is a member of the National Auctioneers Association Hall of Fame, is active in many music industry organizations, and as a sideline, raises premium quality Arabian mules. All aspects of Leroy Van Dyke Enterprises are managed by his wife Gladys, a former legal secretary and court reporter. Their son Ben plays lead guitar in all Van Dyke performances. Van Dyke is also a Korean War veteran.



Year Album Label
1962 Walk On By Mercury
Movin' Van Dyke
1963 The Great Hits
1964 Songs for Mom and Dad
At the Trade Winds
1965 Out of Love Wing
Walk on By Mt. Dew
The Leroy Van Dyke Show Warner Bros.
1966 Country Hits
Movin Wing
Auctioneer Dot
1967 Have a Party Mt. Dew
What Am I Bid MGM
1968 Lonesome Is Kapp
1969 Greatest Hits
Just a Closer Walk with Thee
I've Never Been Loved Before Harmony
1972 Greatest Hits Decca
1973 Golden Hits Sun
1975 Just for You Dot
1977 Gospel Greats Plantation
1978 Rock Relics
1982 Cross Section Audiograph
1983 Audiograph Live


Year Single Chart Positions Album
US Country US
1956 "The Auctioneer" 9 19 single only
1961 "Walk on By" 1 5 Walk On By
1962 "If a Woman Answers (Hang Up the Phone)" 3 35 Movin' Van Dyke
"Black Cloud" 16 The Great Hits
1964 "Happy to Be Unhappy" 54 singles only
"Night People" 45
1965 "Anne of a Thousand Days" 40
1966 "You Couldn't Get My Love Back (if You Tried)" 120
"Roses from a Stranger" 34 I've Never Been Loved Before
1967 "I've Never Been Loved" 66
1968 "Louisville" 23
"You May Be Too Much for Memphis, Baby" 69 Lonesome Is
1969 "Crack in My World" 56 singles only
1970 "An Old Love Affair, Now Showing" 63
"Mister Professor" 71
1971 "I Get Lonely When It Rains" 62
1972 "I'd Rather Be Wantin' Love" 69
1975 "Unfaithful Fools" 79
1976 "Who's Gonna Run the Truck Stop in
Tuba City When I'm Gone?"
1977 "Texas Tea" 77


In 1967, Leroy Van Dyke was awarded the Founding President's Award (formerly Connie B. Gay Award) from the Country Music Association.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 87. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
  2. ^ Randy McDaniel. "LeRoy Van Dyke's Biggest Hit Was 'Walk On By'". KXRB 1140 AM/100.1 FM. Retrieved 2020-06-24.
  3. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 580. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  4. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2011). Top Pop Singles 1955–2010. Record Research, Inc. p. 935. ISBN 0-89820-188-8.
  5. ^ Founding President's Award (formerly Connie B. Gay Award) Archived 2012-09-19 at the Wayback Machine CMAWorld.com

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