Johnny Preston, singer
birth name: John Preston Courville

Johnny Preston

August 18, 1939, Port Arthur, TX ~ March 4, 2011, Beaumont, TX

Sam Monroe, president of Lamar State College-Port Arthur, said there was a community pride about this local boy who did good. […] He said J.P. Richardson, known nationally as the Big Bopper with his hit, Chantilly Lace, wrote the song Running Bear, which made Preston famous. “He presented it to Johnny in a club in Port Neches. He had a tape demonstration.Johnny didn’t like the song because it really didn’t fit his style and it really didn’t portray his voice in the right way. He was a magnificent singer with a great range,” Monroe said. Monroe said Richardson told him that if Preston didn’t want it, it would be a hit for someone else. ~ Port Arthur News: Johnny Preston Obituary ~ March 4, 2011 © The Port Arthur News

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Also on August 18 ~ Everlast born ~ Scott McKenzie dies 

August 18, 1984 ~ Billboard Hot 100 ~ #3 (3) The Jacksons, State Of Shock ~ #2 (4) Tina Turner, What's Love Got To Do With It ~ #1 (1) Ray Parker Jr, Ghostbusters


[Running Bear] took four months to chart stateside but it then went on to become a chart-topper in the US and UK during 1959-1960 (after Richardson's tragic death in the plane crash with Buddy Holly). Despite a disastrous UK tour (cut three weeks short due to poor houses), he had transatlantic Top 20 successes with the follow-ups Cradle Of Love and a revival of Shirley & Lee’s Feel So Fine. He later recorded for Imperial Records, TCF Hall (including Running Bear ’65), ABC Records and Hallway, but never graced the charts again. ~ Allmusic: Johnny Preston ~ retrieved April 21, 2014 © Allmusic

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