Kenny Rogers Biography
Kenneth Ray Rogers or simply Kenny Rogers, is an American singer, songwriter, actor, record producer, and entrepreneur. He was born on August 21, 1938 in Houston, Texas to Lucille Lois and Edward Floyd Rogers. He was born the fourth of eight children.
Rogers attended Wharton Elementary School. He formed his first band while in high school in 1956—a doo-wop group called the Scholars—and has never quit making music. He charted as a solo artist in the late ’50s with “That Crazy Feeling” and performed the song on American Bandstand, played stand-up bass in the jazz group the Bobby Doyle Three (appearing on their album released by Columbia Records), and in 1966 became a member of the popular folk group, The New Christy Minstrels.
The spotlight started focusing on Rogers when his group, the First Edition, scored their first hit, “Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In).” Pop and country chart success followed for the band with “Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love To Town” (when the group officially became known as Kenny Rogers and the First Edition). A string of hits, including “Reuben James,” “Something’s Burning” and “Tell It All Brother,” and a TV variety show called Rollin’ continued to make the popular group relevant. But it was Rogers’ breakthrough, GRAMMY-winning performance of “Lucille” as a solo artist in 1977 that propelled him to superstardom, launching one of the most prosperous careers in the history of music. Certified gold, “Lucille” was named Song of the Year and Single of the Year by the Academy of Country Music and also earned Single of the Year honors from the Country Music Association.
“Daytime Friends,” “Sweet Music Man,” and “Love Or Something Like It” continued Rogers’ run of success. Then came his smash hit, “The Gambler,” a story song so vivid it not only delighted country and pop fans, it also became a TV movie, starring Rogers himself in the title role as Brady Hawkes. The movie spawned four follow-ups, making it the longest running miniseries franchise on television. The five Gambler mini-series have attracted over 100 million viewers nationwide and launched a second career for Rogers as an actor on television and movies, including another TV movie based on one of his #1 hit songs, “Coward of the County.” While drawing new listeners and fans to country music in the 1980s, he came to embody the role of the sensitive male, singing such romantic hits as “Through The Years,” “She Believes In Me,” “You Decorated My Life,” and “Lady,” the biggest song of his career.
In 1985, Kenny participated in the historical USA For Africa recording of “We Are The World,” the multi-celebrity performance which raised millions of dollars for famine relief in Africa. A year later, he co-chaired the audacious “Hands Across America” fund-raiser for America’s hungry.
Into the late ’80s and ’90s, in addition to worldwide tours, recording new music and forming his own record label and management company, Rogers established himself as a well-respected photographer, publishing several books. He was even invited to the White House to shoot a portrait of First Lady Hillary Clinton. He also authored several short stories, and appeared off- Broadway in his Christmas musical, The Toy Shoppe, which he subsequently toured.
In 1999, Rogers returned to the charts in a big way on his own record label, Dreamcatcher, with the hit and Number One video, “The Greatest,” and when the follow-up, “Buy Me a Rose,” hit Number One in 2000, Rogers, at age 61, became the oldest artist in chart history to have a Number One solo record on the country chart, proving his talent was just as vibrant and meaningful as it was when he first started out.
Rogers has continued his amazing run into the 21st century with a Country Music Hall of Fame induction, a CMA Lifetime Achievement Award, two GRAMMY Award nominations (“Calling Me” with Don Henley and “You Can’t Make Old Friends” with Dolly Parton), a CMA Award nomination (“You Can’t Make Old Friends” with Dolly Parton), a Gold-certified record (21 Number Ones), and three critically acclaimed albums (Water and Bridges, The Love of God, and You Can’t Make Old Friends), considered by Rogers to be some of the very best work of his entire career.
Never one to rest on his laurels, in this current decade, Rogers became a New York Times best- selling author. His autobiography, Luck or Something Like It – A Memoir, became a New York Times Best Seller shortly after its 2012 release. A producer of several books of photography, Rogers received an Honorary Masters of Photography from the Professional Photographers of America in 2014.
Shortly following Rogers’ 2013 induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame, a career-spanning exhibit entitled Kenny Rogers: Through The Years opened in 2014 at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville. The exhibit closed in June of 2015.
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Rogers released his first Christmas studio album in 17 years — Once Again It’s Christmas — on September 25, 2015. The record includes guest appearances by Alison Krauss, Jennifer Nettles, Home Free, Jim Brickman, and Winfield’s Locket. On the Cracker Barrel exclusive edition of the recording, Rogers is joined by The Time Jumpers (including Vince Gill) for one song.
Remaining a popular entertainer around the world, Rogers, who was once voted the “Favorite Singer of All-Time” in a joint poll by readers of both USA Today and People, still loves touring and recording new music. Even so, Rogers came to a conclusion that family is more important than touring at this stage in his career, once he’s played the final date of his last world tour. “I’ve been so lucky to have enjoyed such a long career and to have such amazing support from my fans and all who have helped me along the way, but there comes a time when I need to focus on spending time with my family. My life is about my wife and my 11-year-old twin boys right now. There are a lot of things I want to do together with them to create some special memories. I don’t have a bucket list of my own…I have a bucket list of things I want to do with them.”
Kenny Rogers Age
He was born on August 21, 1938.
Kenny Rogers Children – Kenny Rogers Kids
He has five children from four of his five marriages.
Kenny Rogers Marriages – Kenny Rogers Wife – Kenny Rogers Spouse – Kenny Rogers Family
- Janice Gordon, May 15, 1958 – April 1960, divorced; 1 child
- Jean Rogers, October 1960 – 1963, divorced
- Margo Anderson, October 1964 – 1976, divorced; 1 child
- Marianne Gordon, October 1, 1977 – 1993, divorced; 1 child
- Wanda Miller, June 1, 1997 – present; 2 children
Kenny Rogers Net Worth
Kenny Rogers has an estimated net worth of $250 million.
Kenny Rogers Songs
- Islands in the Stream
- You and I
- I Will Always Love You
- If I Ever Fall in Love Again
- Mary, Did You Know
- You Can’t Make Old Friends
- Just Dropped In
- Write Your Name
- Handprints on the Wall
- Blaze of Glory
- Evening Star
- Love the World Away
- The Vows Go Unbroken
- Sweet Music Man
- The Greatest Gift of All
- Buy Me a Rose
- Twenty Years Ago
- Let It Be Me
- Christmas Without You
- Real Love
- I Can’t Unlove You
- I Don’t Need You
- Morning Desire
- Reuben James
- Every Time Two Fools Collide
- If I Knew Then What I Know Now
- If You Want to Find Love
- Anyone Who Isn’t Me Tonight
- A Love Song
- There You Go Again
- Scarlet Fever
- You Light Up My Life