Solomon King

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For New Zealander, see Solomon King (rugby union).

Solomon King (August 13, 1931 – January 21, 2005)[1] was an American 1960s and 1970s popular music singer. He is best remembered for his 1968 British hit single, "She Wears My Ring", which charted in 40 countries


Born Allen V. Levy in Lexington, Kentucky,[1] as a teenager he attended the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, and was offered a scholarship to study Cantatorial Music by Jan Peerce. He first started singing professionally in 1952. Under his first pseudonym, Randy Leeds, his records such as "I'm Gonna Live Til I Die" did not sell. King was the first white singer taken on tour by Billie Holiday, as well as working with Elvis Presley's backing group the Jordanaires, whom he used as his own backing group when recording his first version of "She Wears My Ring" in Nashville, Tennessee.

After marrying Canadian journalist Henny Lowy in 1960, King spent twenty years living in Bolton, England, where the couple had four children. King's chart success in the UK began with "She Wears My Ring", which was a top three hit there in 1968,[2] and was also a hit in 40 other countries,[3] but failed to reach the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart. "She Wears My Ring", based on La Golondrina ("The Swallow)" by the Mexican composer Narciso Serradel Sevilla, was written by the Nashville husband and wife team Boudleaux and Felice Bryant. Also in 1968, "When We Were Young", written by songwriting duo Les Reed and Barry Mason was a #21 hit in the UK Singles Chart.[2] In 1972, he released the single "When You've Gotta Go", written by Lynsey de Paul and Ron Roker on the Polydor label and it made th Australian charts [4] became a U.K. radio hit.

At 6 ft 8 inches tall, some TV interviewers refused to have him on their shows unless he sat down.[5]

After his marriage, to Canadian journalist Henny Lowy ended in 1980 he moved back to the US, where he wed a further two times. King continued singing in clubs in the US.

King died in Norman, Oklahoma, of cancer, on January 21, 2005, at the age of 73.[1]


  1. ^ a b c - accessed March 2011
  2. ^ a b Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 302. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  3. ^ "Solomon King Singer best known for 'She Wears My Ring'". The Independent. 2005-01-24. Retrieved 2009-10-08. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ "US singer Solomon King dies at 73". BBC News. 2005-01-21. Retrieved 2007-03-31. 

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