Just in: Country king dies of Covid

Just in: Country king dies of Covid


norman lebrecht

December 12, 2020

Charley Pride, the first African-American country music star, has died of COVID-19 complications at 86.

Dolly Parton tweets:





  • Amos says:

    At the time the idea of a black man having a major career singing C & W was deemed ridiculous. Although American’s today pretend that racism was a problem in the distant past when CP was active, in 1968, a television network tried to censor video of a duet with Harry Belafonte and Petula Clark because at one point she held his arm. RIP!

  • Greg Bottini says:

    Charley Pride.
    I’m heartbroken.
    Charley had a saying, which due to my spotty memory I can only paraphrase here: “People pay too much attention to the color of somebody’s skin. I call it the skin condition!”
    In the person of Charley, having a beautiful voice went hand-in-hand with being a beautiful human being.
    I hope the folks who frequent this blog who may not have had much truck with country music will look up the story of Charley Pride.
    I love you, Charley, and I will think of you often during the tough days coming ahead.
    Rest in peace, Mr. Pride.
    DAMN that the Rona killed you. DAMN.

  • MacroV says:

    I’m not much of a country music fan, but I can appreciate what a pathbreaker he was in an area dominated by white, rural folks. He was featured prominently in Ken Burns’ great “Country Music” documentary.

  • Larry says:

    He was first an excellent athlete and had a minor league baseball contract for a few years. A wonderful artist. RIP.

  • Marfisa says:

    NPR replayed a 2017 interview with him this morning: https://www.npr.org/2020/12/13/945989942/country-legend-charley-pride-dies-of-covid-19-complications-at-86
    I listened with sorrow, and admiration for his wisdom and tolerance.

  • J Barcelo says:

    What a voice! I remember hearing him in Nashville many years ago…great artist and showman. Time to break out his Christmas in My Hometown cd.

  • BruceB says:

    One of the greats. RIP.

    (“Kiss an Angel Good Morning” was one of my favorite songs on the radio as a kid.)