Country star Roi Clark, a virtuoso and guitarist who led the Hee Hav TV show for almost a quarter of a century, was famous for hits such as "Yesterday when I was young" and "Honeimoon Feeling". He was 85 years old.
Publishers Jeremy Westbie said Clark died on Thursday due to complications from pneumonia at home in Tulsa, Okla.
Clark was the host of "Hee Hav" or hosted for the full 24 years, and Buck Ovens was his most famous host. The latest show of the country of music and comedy is the last episode emitted in 1993, although it was repeated several years later.
"Hee Hav" will not disappear, but a smile on too many faces, "he said in 2004, when the show was first distributed on VHS and DVD.
Clark played guitar, bando, dough, mandolin, accordion and other instruments. His skill has brought him gigs as guest performers with many top orchestras, including Boston Pops. In 1976, he visited a tour of the Soviet Union, breaking the boundaries that are usually closed to Americans.
And, of course, he was also a member of Grand Ole Opri.
His hits include "My Finger Tips" (1963), "Yesterday When I Was Young" (1969), "Living With Me" (1973) and "Honeymoon" (1974). He was also known for instrumental versions of "Malaguene", on a 12-string guitar and "Ghost Riders on the Ski".
He was admitted to the Countri Music Hall of Fame in 2009 and emotionally told the audience that the move was "just to join the Countri Music Hall of Fame and imagine that your name will just be said along with all the sheets."
In his autobiography in 1994, "My life in spite of myself," he said "Yesterday when I was young" he opened many people not only to what I could, but to the whole fertile and still unused field of the country of music, from Glenn Campbells and Kenny Rogers, from here to Garth Brooks and Vince Gills. "
Clark was on The Tonight Shov several times in the sixties and seventies of the last century, when it was extremely rare when the country performed such a role. His fans did not include only musicians, but an excellent baseball player Mickey Mantle. Janki's outfielder moved to tears "Yesterday when I was young" and for years, Clark promised to sing on his memorial – a request he approved after Mantle's death in 1995.
Beginning in 1983, Clark led the theater theater Roi Clark in Branson, Missouri, and was one of the first entertainers in the country to open the theater. Dozens followed him.
He was an artist who visited in 2000. Over the years he has played in places around the world: Carnegie Hall in New York, Sporting Club in Monte Carlo, Grand Palace in Brussels and Rossiia Theater in Moscow.
Clark was born in Meherrin, Virginia, and received his first guitar at his 14th Christmas. He played in his father's dance band for 15 years.
In the 1950s, Clarke played in bands in Washington DC, D.C. In 1960 he was given the chance to lead the band of singer Vanda Jackson. He performed regularly in Las Vegas. He received the first recording contract with Capitol Records, 1962.
He appeared on TV show Jimmy Dean "Tovn and Countri Time" and took over the show when Dean left.
In 1997 he published Roia Clark's Christmas Memories.
Clark and Ovens worked together for years, but they had very different feelings about "Hee Haven". The ovens, which left the show in 1986, later called it "donkey ass," he ran for "this great salary". Clark told The Associated Press in 2004 that "Hee Hav" was a family gathering.
"We became part of the family, the viewers were part of the show's owners, who identified with these clowns and we had good music."
Clark said that his career limited the hourly music program in the country and sound jokes.
"This is a cake on the cake, which put my face and name together."
Former AP writer Joe Edwards contributed to this report.