This article needs additional citations for verification. (January 2018)
|Origin||Springfield, Missouri, United States|
|Genres||Gospel, country, rock and roll, folk|
The Jordanaires were an American vocal quartet that formed as a gospel group in 1948. Over the years, they recorded both sacred and secular music for recording companies such as Capitol Records, RCA Victor, Columbia Records, Decca Records, Vocalion Records, Stop Records, and many other smaller independent labels.
In the mid-1950s, they also began lending their vocal talents to other artists as background singers in recording sessions. They are widely known for having provided background vocals for Elvis Presley, in live appearances, recordings, and feature films from 1956 to 1972. The group worked in the recording studio, on stage, and on television with many country, gospel, and rock and roll artists.
They also provided background vocals using the name the Merry Melody Singers and the Almanac Singers, sometimes using different personnel.
In 1948, Monty and Bill Matthews left. Hawkins switched to baritone, and new lead Neal Matthews was recruited. Don Bruce came in as a new first tenor, but he was drafted the next year. The group narrowed to a quartet, with Gordon Stoker taking over as first tenor. They became members of the Grand Ole Opry in 1949. They recorded for Capitol Records in the early 1950s, and began providing vocal accompaniment behind solo singers in Nashville, Tennessee.
The quartet became well known in the Southern gospel genre, and what made them stand out from other quartets of that time was how they would bring spirituals (such as "Dry Bones") to a predominantly white audience. While continuing to turn out gospel albums of their own, the group became better known for the signature background harmonies they have provided on dozens of secular records.
- "A Poor Man's Roses (Or a Rich Man's Gold)"
- "Blue Moon of Kentucky"
- "Crazy Arms"
- "Faded Love"
- "Foolin' Around"
- "Half as Much"
- "Have You Ever Been Lonely (Have You Ever Been Blue)?"
- "I Can't Help It (If I'm Still in Love with You)"
- "I Fall to Pieces"
- "Leavin' on Your Mind"
- "Love Letters in the Sand"
- "San Antonio Rose"
- "Seven Lonely Days"
- "She's Got You"
- "Someday (You'll Want Me to Want You)"
- "South of the Border (Down Mexico Way)"
- "Sweet Dreams"
- "That's My Desire"
- "The Wayward Wind"
- "True Love"
- "Walkin' After Midnight" (1961 recording)
- "You Belong to Me"
- "You Made Me Love You (I Didn't Want to Do It)"
- "Your Cheatin' Heart"
After Elvis and Cline
The group changed again in 1982, when Hoyt Hawkins died. His replacement was Duane West, formerly of Sonny James' backup group, the Southern Gentlemen. In 1990, the group provided backing vocals for Presley's former Sun Records labelmate Johnny Cash on his Mercury Records album Boom Chicka Boom. The group has also recorded with the Swedish group Vikingarna.
Hugh Jarrett died at 78 on May 31, 2008, from injuries sustained in an auto accident in March.
- Hoyt Hawkins – baritone and lead vocals, piano, organ, percussion (1949-1980; died 1980)
- Neal Matthews Jr. — second tenor and lead vocals, rhythm guitar, lead guitar, double bass, bass guitar (1949–2000; died 2000)
- Gordon Stoker – tenor vocals, piano, organ, percussion (1951-2013; died 2013)
- Ray Walker – bass vocals (1958-2013)
- Bill Matthews – vocals (1948-1949)
- Monty Matthews – vocals (1948-1949)
- Bob Hubbard – vocals (1948-1949)
- Culley Holt – bass vocals (1949-1954)
- Bob Money – piano (1949-1951)
- Don Bruce – first tenor vocals (1949-1950)
- Hugh Jarrett – bass vocals (1954-1958)
- Duane West – baritone vocals (1980-1999; died 2002)
- Louis Nunley – baritone vocals (1999-2013)
- Curtis Young – lead vocals (2000-2013)
The Jordanaires performed with many modern recording artists, as well as recent sessions with country musicians.
- 1957: Ricky Nelson's "Poor Little Fool", "Lonesome Town", "It's Late", "I Believe What You Say" and other hit recordings
- 1959: Several tracks on Johnny Cash's albums The Fabulous Johnny Cash and Songs of our Soil, the 1978 album I Would Like to See You Again and others
- 1964: Cliff Richard's 1965 singles "The Minute You're Gone", "Wind Me Up (Let Me Go)", "On My Word" and a few other album and EP tracks
- 1970: Ringo Starr's second solo album, Beaucoups of Blues
- 1973: Bobby Bare's hit single "Ride Me Down Easy"
- 1975: Jack Jersey two albums I Wonder (a live album) and Honky Tonk Man
- 1975: Gary Stewart's RCA debut Out of Hand, that spawned three top ten hits including the "She's Acting Single"
- 1980: Don McLean's album Chain Lightning
- 1981: Don McLean's album Believers
- 1981: On several tracks for Gene Summers' LP Gene Summers in Nashville
- 1984: Dolly Parton's song "Save The Last Dance For Me" on the album The Great Pretender
- 1985: Four songs by The Blasters' from their album Hard Line including "Samson and Delilah" 
- 1988: Appeared in Sawyer Brown's music video "My Baby's Gone"
- 1993: "Bigger Than Elvis" on Chicago's album titled Chicago XXXII: Stone of Sisyphus, recorded in 1993 and published in 2008
- 1996: Ween's album 12 Golden Country Greats
- 1997: On "Who'll Be The One If Not Me" for the off-Broadway musical Violet
- 1998: On "You Better Move On" and "Tomorrow Night" on Sugar Ray Norcia's album Sweet & Swingin'
- 1999: began their collaborative work with Art Greenhaw, which resulted in a Grammy Award for Best Southern, Country or Bluegrass Gospel Album for We Called Him Mr. Gospel Music: The James Blackwood Tribute Album (2003), and six Grammy nominations for Best Album of the Year in a gospel category for other album titles, including The Great Gospel Hit Parade (2001), God Is Love (2002), Always Hear The Harmony (2004), 20th Century Gospel (2005) and Southern Meets Soul (2006) AllMusic noted about the 20th Century Gospel album that "Greenhaw's manly baritone is warm and inviting, and when backed by vocal-group legends the Jordanaires ("Gospel Woman," "Welcome to My World"), the resultant sound suggests the glory days of Elvis Presley and Jim Reeves."
- 2002: Sang with The Tractors' Steve Ripley
- 2006: The Grascals album Long List of Heartaches, on the song "Did You Forget God Today?"
- 2006–07: Friends of Henry Golis Wish You A Merry Christmas with the Jordanaires, and Henry Golis Presents Good Music With Friends featuring the Jordanaires
- 2007: appeared with the Christian pop band C.B.O.P. on the songs "Between You & Me" and "Live Like A King" on the album A Road Less Traveled
- 2007: "Save Your Dreams" by Americana artist Shark
- 2009: Today, Tomorrow & Forever EP by Pete Molinari
- 2010: Last Night In Nashville album by The Kingmakers
- 2011: Kristin Chenoweth's Some Lessons Learned, on "What Would Dolly Do"
- "Opry Timeline – 1940s". Opry.com. Retrieved July 6, 2012.
- "The Jordanaires". AllMusic. 2012. Retrieved July 6, 2012.
- "Jordanaires Biography". Cmt.com. Retrieved 11 May 2011.
- Cox, William L. "Patsy Cline's Recording Sessions - The Decca Years". Patsified.com. Retrieved 7 September 2018.
- Linda Hjertén (22 January 2004). "Vikingarna tar farväl av fansen". Aftonbladet.se (in Swedish). Retrieved 14 December 2016.
- Rosen, Jody (25 June 2019). "Here Are Hundreds More Artists Whose Tapes Were Destroyed in the UMG Fire". The New York Times. Retrieved 28 June 2019.
- "Hugh Jarrett". Jordanaires.net. Retrieved March 28, 2013.
- Cooper, Peter (March 27, 2013). "Jordanaires leader Gordon Stoker dies". The Tennessean. Retrieved June 2, 2013.
- Lewry, Peter; Goodall, Nigel (1991). Cliff Richard The Complete Recording Sessions 1958-1990. London: Blandford. pp. 62–63. ISBN 0-7137-2242-8.
- "Hard Line - The Blasters - Songs, Reviews, Credits - AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 7 September 2018.
- The Jordanaires at AllMusic. Retrieved July 15, 2013.
- "Complete list of Grammy nominees; ceremony set for Feb. 23". San Francisco Chronicle. Hearst Corporation. January 8, 2003. Archived from the original on December 7, 2012. Retrieved September 22, 2012.
- Official records, National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, 2000–2006.
- "20th Century Gospel: From Hymns to Blackwood Brothers Tribute to Christian Country - Various Artists - Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
- Official website
- "The Jordanaires" Vocal Group Hall of Fame Page
- Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
- Spencer Leigh, "Gordon Stoker: Singer with the Jordanaires", The Independent, April 2, 2013
- Bob Hubbard Interview
- The Jordanaires recordings at the Discography of American Historical Recordings.
- The Jordanaires discography at Discogs