In Memoriam: Roy Clark (April 1933 – November 2018)

November 16, 2018
Editor In Chief

Country legend Roy Clark is seen performing in this undated photo. Clark, who was a star on the popular syndicated country music variety show “Hee Haw”, died at his home in Tulsa. (WikiMedia)

Roy Linwood Clark (April 15, 1933 – November 15, 2018) was an American singer and musician. He is best known for having hosted Hee Haw, a nationally televised country variety show, from 1969 to 1997. Clark was an important and influential figure in country music, both as a performer and helping to popularize the genre.

During the 1970s, Clark frequently guest-hosted for Johnny Carson on The Tonight Show and enjoyed a 30-million viewership for Hee Haw. Clark was highly regarded and renowned as a guitarist and banjo player, skilled in the traditions of many genres, including classical guitar, country music, Latin music, bluegrass, and pop. He had hit songs as a pop vocalist (e.g., “Yesterday, When I Was Young” and “Thank God and Greyhound”), and his instrumental skill had an enormous effect on generations of bluegrass and country musicians. He became a member of the Grand Ole Opry in 1987, and, in 2009, was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. He published his autobiography, My Life in Spite of Myself, in 1994.

Clark married Barbara Joyce Rupard on August 31, 1957, and they had four children. He made his home in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where Roy Clark Elementary School was named in his honor in 1978.

Clark died on November 15, 2018, at 85 at his Tulsa home due to complications of pneumonia. – Wikipedia

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