Roy Drusky

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Roy Drusky
Drusky in 1969
Drusky in 1969
Background information
Birth nameRoy Frank Drusky, Jr.
Born(1930-06-22)June 22, 1930
Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
DiedSeptember 23, 2004(2004-09-23) (aged 74)
Portland, Tennessee, U.S.
GenresCountry music
Occupation(s)singer, songwriter, producer, actor, disc jockey
Years active1953–2004
LabelsStarday Records, Columbia Records, Decca Records, Mercury Records, Chapel Records

Roy Frank Drusky, Jr. (June 22, 1930[1] – September 23, 2004) was an American country music singer, songwriter, producer, actor and disc jockey popular from the 1960s through the early 1970s. Known for his baritone voice, he was known for incorporating the Nashville sound and for being one of the first artists to record a song written by Kris Kristofferson ("Jody and the Kid"). His highest-charting single was the No. 1 "Yes, Mr. Peters", a duet with Priscilla Mitchell.


Early life and career[edit]

Drusky was born in 1930 in Atlanta, Georgia, United States.[1] His mother, a church organist, had tried for years to get her son into music as a child, but he was focused more on sports, allegedly declining a contract with the Cleveland Indians,[2] then beginning his music career in the early 1950s performing on a Decatur, Georgia radio station. He began singing while in the US Navy during the 1940s, and later attended Emory University and studied veterinary medicine.[1] During this time, he also played country music with a group he founded, the Southern Ranch Boys.[1]

Drusky also worked as a disc jockey.[1] In 1953, he signed with Starday Records;[1] the first single he released was called "Such a Fool". That same year, he joined the Grand Ole Opry.[1] A couple of years later, he recorded for Columbia Records, but none of his work gained much success.[1]

Work as a songwriter[edit]

Faron Young, a well-known country singer, helped Drusky's career by recording his songs.[1] Two songs he wrote, "Alone With You" and "Country Girl", Young turned into No. 1 country hits.[1] After that, Drusky moved on to Decca Records. He also wrote "Anymore",[1] which charted for Teresa Brewer in 1960.

Height of his career[edit]

Drusky charted in Cashbox with "Wait and See" and "Our Church Your Wedding" in 1959.

In 1960, Drusky finally struck it big. At Decca Records, where he worked with producer Owen Bradley, he released a single called "Another", which he co-wrote. Bradley was a well-known producer who had led country singer Patsy Cline to big success in the early 1960s. Bradley helped smooth out Drusky's orchestral tones; the next year, Drusky reached the Country Top 10 with the single "Second Hand Rose".[1]

In 1963, Drusky switched to Mercury Records and released his first hit from his new record company the same year he signed on to it. The song was called "Peel Me a Nanner", which was written by Bill Anderson.[1] He cut a lot of duets with Priscilla Mitchell: one of his biggest hits with her was the No. 1 hit "Yes, Mr. Peters".[1] During his career, Drusky racked up a number of Top 40 Country hits.[1]

Some of his Top 40 songs were written by famous singer-songwriters. Liz Anderson wrote "Pick of the Week" for him as well as "(My Friends Are Gonna Be) Strangers" which is best remembered by the concurrent hit by Merle Haggard, although Drusky's was the more successful record at the time. Kris Kristofferson wrote "Jody and the Kid". Another song, "Red, Red Wine", was written by Neil Diamond.

Drusky appeared on most of the country music television programs of the era; and in 1965, he appeared in the movie White Lightnin' Express and two other films as well, The Golden Guitar and Four Acre Feud.[1]

The 1970s[edit]

Drusky had his most successful record in several years with 1970's "Long Long Texas Road", a top 5 hit.[1] He continued to score several top 40 country hits with the occasional low-charting single.

Drusky's last top 40 country was a remake of "A Satisfied Mind" in 1973 which had earlier been a hit for both Porter Wagoner and Jean Shepard. He made his last appearance on the Billboard charts in 1974, but occasionally recorded on smaller record labels into the 1990s. He also recorded a number of gospel albums for Chapel Records during this period. He also returned to writing and producing music, the latter of which he had done since the 1960s.

Drusky's membership with the Grand Ole Opry ensured him exposure for decades long after the radio hits stopped coming. He appeared regularly on the program until the year of his death, singing the hit songs he had racked up in the 1960s and 1970s, in addition to performing country standards from other artists, which became a tradition at the Opry.


On September 23, 2004, Drusky died at age 74 from complications stemming from lung cancer, which he fought for several years.[3]

Personal life[edit]

Drusky joined the Seventh-day Adventist Church in 1980. He traveled and performed with Kenneth Cox Ministries for 15 years. He and his wife Bobbye had three sons, Roy Frank, III ("Twig"), Tracy Alan ("Tad") and Darel Bryon ("Tip").[4]



Year Album US Country
1961 Anymore with Roy Drusky
1962 It's My Way
1963 Roy Drusky
1964 Songs of the Cities 14
Yesterday's Gone 14
1965 Pick of the Country 11
Country Music All Around the World 18
The Great Roy Drusky Sings
1966 Roy Drusky's Greatest Hits 7
Together Again (w/ Priscilla Mitchell) 14
In a New Dimension 20
If the Whole World Stopped Lovin' 17
1967 Now Is a Lonely Time 31
1968 Greatest Hits Volume 2 33
Jody and the Kid 27
1969 Portrait of Roy Drusky 33
My Grass Is Green 37
1970 I'll Make Amends 38
The Best of Roy Drusky 42
All My Hard Times 20
1971 I Love the Way You've Been Lovin' Me 3
1976 New Lips
1977 Ramblin' Man
1979 English Gold
1982 Songs Of Willie Nelson
1984 Country Sunshine


Year Single Chart Positions Album
US Country[5] CAN Country
1960 "Another (Just Like Me)" 2 Anymore with Roy Drusky
"Anymore" 3
"I Can't Tell My Heart That" (with Kitty Wells) 26 single only
1961 "Three Hearts in a Tangle"A 2 Anymore with Roy Drusky
"I'd Rather Loan You Out" 10
"I Went Out of My Way (To Make You Happy)" 9 singles only
1962 "There's Always One (Who Loves a Lot)" 17
"Second Hand Rose" 3
1964 "Peel Me a Nanner" 8
"Pick of the Week" 13 Pick of the Country
"Summer, Winter, Spring and Fall" 41 singles only
1965 "All My Friends Are Gonna Be Strangers" 6
"Yes, Mr. Peters" (with Priscilla Mitchell) 1 Love's Eternal Triangle
"White Lightnin' Express" 21 Roy Drusky's Greatest Hits
"Slippin' Around" (with Priscilla Mitchell) 45 Love's Eternal Triangle
1966 "Rainbows and Roses" 20 In a New Dimension
"The World Is Round" 10
1967 "If the Whole World Stopped Lovin'" 12 If the Whole World Stopped Lovin'
"New Lips" 25 Now Is a Lonely Time
"Weakness in a Man" 18 Greatest Hits Volume 2
"I'll Never Tell on You" (with Priscilla Mitchell) 61 single only
1968 "You Better Sit Down Kids" 26 21 Jody and the Kid
"Jody and the Kid" 24 9
"Where the Blue and Lonely Go" 10 16 Portrait of Roy Drusky
"My Grass Is Green" 14 My Grass Is Green
1969 "Such a Fool" 7 42
"I'll Make Amends" 11 33 I'll Make Amends
1970 "Long Long Texas Road" 5 4
"All My Hard Times" 9 12 All My Hard Times
1971 "I Love the Way That You've Been Lovin' Me" 15 25 I Love the Way That You've Been Lovin' Me
"I Can't Go On Lovin' You" 37
"Red Red Wine" 17 16 I Must Be Doin' Something Right
1972 "Sunshine and Rainbows" 58
"The Last Time I Called Somebody Darlin'" 25 63
1973 "I Must Be Doin' Something Right" 32 60
"That Rain Makin' Baby of Mine" 50 65
"Satisfied Mind" 25 38 singles only
1974 "Close to Home" 81
"Dixie Lily" 45 Peaceful Easy Feeling
1976 "Night Flying" 81 Night Flying
1977 "Betty's Song" 91 single only


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Colin Larkin, ed. (1993). The Guinness Who's Who of Country Music (First ed.). Guinness Publishing. pp. 124/5. ISBN 0-85112-726-6.
  2. ^ "roy drusky three hearts in a tangle live". YouTube. Archived from the original on December 21, 2021. Retrieved August 6, 2021.
  3. ^ "Roy Drusky, Grand Ole Opry Singer, dies at 74". The New York Times. September 27, 2004. Retrieved May 12, 2018.
  4. ^ "Roy Frank Drusky III". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. September 29, 2004. Retrieved April 20, 2022.
  5. ^ Whitburn, Joel (August 2008). Hot Country Songs 1944 to 2008. Record Research, Inc. p. 130. ISBN 978-0-89820-177-2.
  6. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2011). Top Pop Singles 1955–2010. Record Research, Inc. p. 271. ISBN 978-0-89820-188-8.


  • Country Music: The Rough Guide; Wolff, Kurt; Penguin Publishing