Alabama Music Achievers

Alphabetical Achievers Listing


HAL KEMP - Marion, Alabama
-Voted the "nation's favorite dance band" in 1935
-His orchestra was first to broadcast dance music from England to the U.S.
-Made over 400 recordings for Brunswick, Columbia and RCA Victor

EDDIE KENDRICKS- Birmingham, Alabama
- He formed the vocal group known as the Cavaliers.
- They became the Primes in 1959, and in the early 60's were signed to Motown Records by Berry Gordy, Jr.
- Gordy changed their name to the Temptations.
- Sang lead on the group's first hit single, "The Way You Do The Things You Do"
- Sang either lead or high harmony on over 20 hits between 1963 and 1971.
- Kendricks quit the group in 1971 and began a solo career with Motown.
- Hits such as "Keep On Truckin'" and "Boogie Down" followed. In 1977 he moved to Arista Records and recorded "Ain't No Smoke Without Fire". He signed with Atlantic Records in 1980.
- He returned to the Temptations fold for a reunion tour and album in 1982.
- He formed a duo with fellow ex Temptation, David Ruffin, and the pair were showcased at Live Aid as well as on a live album by Hall And Oates.
- This exposure allowed them to secure a contract as a duo, and Ruffin And Kendricks in 1988 represented the most successful blending of their distinctive vocal styles since the mid 60's.

JIMMY KEY - Cullman, Alabama
- Successful songwriter during the mid-60's
- Two Top Ten songs for Dave Dudley
- Other hits recorded by Eddy Arnold and Jimmy C. Newman

GEORGE KILBY, JUNIOR - Anniston, Alabama
- Kilby's band is one of the top acts in New York; and has backed the legendary Pinetop Perkins for more than a decade.
- He produced Pinetop's seminal Portrait of a Delta Bluesman which won the W.C. Handy Award "Blues Album of the Year" in its category.

BUDDY KILLEN - Florence, Alabama
- Publisher/Songwriter/Producer/Singer
- Owner of Tree International, the largest country music publishing company in the world
- Killen's keen taste for talent brought such names to the Tree family as Dottie West, Roger Miller, Joe Tex, Dolly Parton, and countless others.
- As a songwriter, Killen has written top 10 hits in both R&B and Country, from his Joe Tex hit "Ain't Gonna Bump No More With No Big Fat Woman" to the #1 Conway Twitty hit "I May Never Get To Heaven" and Al Hirt's "Sugar Lips."
- Killen also made a name for himself as one of the industry's most highly-acclaimed record producers. Among artists he worked with are Exile, T.G. Sheppard, Bill Anderson, Doug Kershaw, Dinah Shore, Burt Reynolds, Jack Palance, Diana Trask, Louise Mandrell, Joe Tex, Dottie West, Dolly Parton, and Ronnie McDowell.

AL KILLIAN - Birmingham, Alabama
- Trumpet with Charlie Turner's Arcadians (c. 1935).
- Toured South America with Baron Lee (Jimmy Ferguson) in summer of 1937.
- Worked with Teddy Hill and Don Redman before joining Count Basie in January 1940.
- With Lionel Hampton spring 1945).
- Led his own band late 1946.
- With Billy Eckstine (spring 1947), also worked with Earle Spencer.

ROCK KILLOUGH - Greenville, Alabama
- Songwriter, singer, and musician.
- Rock has had songs on two gold albums by the Oak Ridge Boys as well as the million-selling album "Whiskey Bent and Hell Bound" by Hank Williams, Jr.
- Other artists who have recorded his songs are: Johnny Rodriquez, Brenda Lee, Waylon Jennings, Jerry Reed, Jeannie Seely, Jerry Jeff Walker, and Carole King.
- Killough appeared on the precedent-setting first Songwriter's Special on educational television's Austin City Limits.
- He has played guitar, harmonica, or done background vocals with Hank Williams, Jr., Merle Haggard, Jerry Reed, Mickey Newbury, Jeannie Pruitt, Hank Snow, and others.
- He also tours as a solo performer.

STEVEN KIMBROUGH - Athens, Alabama
-- Debut at New York's Carnegie Hall in 1967
- Has won acclaim for his dramatic Baritone performances in North and South America and abroad.
- Received the American Opera Auditions Award
- Awards from the Liederkranz and Corbett foundations have
furthered his international career - Starred in German TV musical production

JILL KING - Arab, Alabama
- 1n 1997 she secured a publishing contract with Gate to Gate Publishing and has since penned over 200 songs, some of which appear on her release: "Jillbilly."

EDDIE KIRKLAND - Dothan, Alabama
- Played with John Lee Hooker five years also recording with him several times.
- In 1962 he cut his first album, It's the Blues Man! Kirkland's intense vocals, raucous guitar and harmonica backed by the saxophone of King Curtis.
- In 1962, Kirkland signed on with Otis Redding as a sideman and show opener.

RAY KIRKLAND - Dothan, Alabama
- Ray has the ability to play guitar, fiddle, banjo and bass guitar.
- He began his musical career, touring with such legendary greats as "Jim and Jesse" and the "Osborne Brothers."
- He opened shows for Jimmy C. Newman, while also acting as Newman's band leader and road manger, for several years. - Ray has appeared with regularity on the "Grand Ole Opry," since 1961.
- He is a member of the renowned "Jamboree USA," in Wheeling, West Virginia and has performed at the Wimbley Festival, in England for over nine years.
- Ray hosted his own television show for several years and has appeared on many syndicated broadcasts and network specials including, the CBS Special, "Country Comes Home," "Backstage at the Opry," "Pop Goes the Country," NBC's "The Today Show," and the "Porter Wagoner Show."

ETHEL JEAN KITTRELL - Birmingham, Alabama
- She was billed as "Jazzie Jeanie"
- In 1957 through 1959, she worked with the Chesapeake Bay Jazz Band.
- She toured with the Chicago Stompers working clubs and concerts throughout Europe in 1959. She continued on with the Stompers working the Red Arrow Club in Chicago in '59 and '60.
- She appeared on "ST. LOUIS JAZZ," on CBS-TV in 1967, and made frequent other TV and radio appearances.
- In the late 60's and into the 70's, Kittrell played a variety of venues, including a tour of Japan.

BAKER KNIGHT - Birmingham, Alabama
- Singer, songwriter, guitarist and pianist
- Style ranges from country to easy listening to rock >n roll.
- He has sold over 23,000,000 records
- He is recognized for songs such as "Don't the Girls All Get Prettier at Closing Time" by Mickey Gilley which won the 1976 Academy of Country Music Awards "Song of the Year." - Also wrote "The Wonder of You" by Elvis Presley, and "Lonesome Town" by Rick Nelson.
- His list of credits includes songs performed by legendary artists such as Hank Williams Jr., Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Perry Como, Pat Boone, and Jerry Lee Lewis.

FREDERICK KNIGHT - Bessemer, Alabama
- Recorded the classic 1972 hit "I've Been Lonely For So Long"
- Altogether Frederick released four singles on Stax and three on the Truth label.
- He has written and produced singles for Anita Ward including the #1 hit "Ring My Bell"
- His songs have been recorded by K.C. and the Sunshine Band, Barry White and many others.
- "Ring My Bell" was re-released in 1991 by D.J. Jazzy Jeff & Fresh Prince
- He was a co-writer on the #1 Dr. Dre & Snoop Doggy Dog "Nothin' But A G Thang"

MATTHEW KNOWLES - Gadsden, Alabama
- Formed the R&B group Destiny's Child in the 1990s featuring his daughter Beyonce
- He is the manager of Destiny's Child
- He is head of the Houston-based record label, Music World Entertainment.
- Knowles produced the solo debut of Destiny's Child, Michelle Williams' gospel album
- He has also produced four young women from Detroit who call themselves Ramiyah in a gospel recording.

Alphabetical Achievers Listing


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