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Ronnie McDowell

Ronnie McDowell presenting his Reflections of a King print during a concert in Florida, 2007.
Background information
Birth name Ronald Dean McDowell
Born March 25, 1950 (1950-03-25) (age 59)
Origin Fountain Head, Tennessee, United States
Genres Country
Occupations Singer
Instruments vocals
Years active 1977-present
Labels Scorpion, Epic, MCA, Curb
Associated acts Elvis Presley
Conway Twitty
Website Official website

Ronald Dean (Ronnie) McDowell (born March 25, 1950) is an American country music artist. He made his debut in 1977 with the song "The King Is Gone", a tribute to Elvis Presley, who had died not long before the single's release. From that single onward, McDowell has charted more than thirty Top 40 hits on the Billboard country music charts. Two of his singles – "Older Women" and "You're Gonna Ruin My Bad Reputation" — reached Number One on the country charts, while eleven more reached Top Ten. He has also released more than twenty studio albums, and has been signed to Curb Records since 1986.



Following the death of Elvis Presley in 1977, McDowell had a one-off hit with his self-penned tribute song "The King Is Gone," which he recorded on the independent Scorpion record label. The record took off immediately, gaining airplay on country and pop radio stations across the United States and around the world. To date, "The King Is Gone" has sold more than 5 million copies. In addition, McDowell also provided vocals to the soundtrack to the 1979 made-for-TV Presley bio Elvis.

Suddenly, the young man from Portland, Tennessee was a star and he quickly proved that he was not a fluke. McDowell scored a second hit for the Scorpion label entitled "I Love You, I Love You, I Love You" before being signed by CBS Records Epic in 1979.

McDowell charted a string of hit singles and albums for Epic between 1979 and 1986. Every single release, with the exception of one, became a Top 10 hit, including the chart-toppers "Older Women" and "You're Gonna Ruin My Bad Reputation." Other hits during his Epic years included "Watching Girls Go By," "Personally," "You Made A Wanted Man Of Me," "Wandering Eyes", "All Tied Up," and "In A New York Minute."

McDowell toured constantly to support each album release, and consequently built a large fan base throughout the country. He sought the advice of artists such as Conway Twitty, who became his mentor and friend. Twitty helped the young singer with advice about touring, recording and entertaining the fans.

Moving to Curb Records in 1986, McDowell scored a Top 10 hit with "It's Only Make Believe," a duet with Conway Twitty on what had been Twitty's breakthrough rock and roll hit in 1958. Two years later, McDowell teamed up with Jerry Lee Lewis for a duet that McDowell wrote, entitled "You're Never Too Old To Rock N' Roll." He also recorded yet another Top 10 hit with his cover version of the pop standard "Unchained Melody," which also became a #1 country music video. He started appearing in larger venues and touring with artists such as Conway Twitty, Tammy Wynette and Loretta Lynn before headlining his own shows.

McDowell sang thirty six songs on the soundtrack, "Elvis," the Dick Clark-produced television movie which featured Kurt Russell as the performer. He also was the singing voice for the television movie "Elvis And Me", the ABC television series about the early years of Presley's' career, "Elvis," and the 1997 Showtime special, "Elvis Meets Nixon."

In 2002, McDowell recorded two albums for Curb Records, one consisting of beach music with Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Bill Pinkney's Original Drifters, entitled, "Ronnie McDowell with Bill Pinkney's Original Drifters". The second project, a country album, entitled "Ronnie McDowell Country", a collection of six new McDowell penned songs and a few country standards by such legendary country singers and writers as Buck Owens, Harlan Howard and Dallas Frazier.

McDowell often tours with The Jordanaires, Millie Kirkham, and one of Elvis Presley's original sidemen, D.J. Fontana. They stage a "no-jumpsuit" tribute to Presley's music and life. Two of McDowell's latest projects include an upcoming album consisting of music from both the "old school," and "new school" generations, and a single entitled, “Hey Mr. Oilman,” which was released during the recent gas price spike. Many other artists perform duets with McDowell on the album, including Bill Medley on the cover single, "Lost in Dirty Dancing."

McDowell continues to tour the road to this day.

Personal life

Ronnie McDowell resides in Hendersonville, Tennessee. Along with touring, he paints in his spare time.

Ronnie McDowell's painting, Reflection of a King



Year Album US Country Label
1977 The King Is Gone 18 Scorpion
1978 Live at the Fox Theatre
A Tribute to the King
I Love You, I Love You, I Love You 47
1979 Elvis Dick Clark
Rockin' You Easy, Lovin' You Slow 45 Epic
1980 Love So Many Ways 59
Going, Going, Gone
1981 Good Time Lovin' Man 6
1982 Love to Burn 22
Greatest Hits
1983 Personally 23
Country Boy's Heart 56
1984 Willing 33
1985 In a New York Minute
1986 All Tied Up in Love 34 Curb/MCA
1987 Older Women and Other Greatest Hits Epic
1988 I'm Still Missing You 45 Curb
1989 American Music
1990 The Best of Ronnie McDowell
1991 Unchained Melody 32
Your Precious Love 72
1992 When a Man Loves a Woman
1993 Country Dances
1994 Greatest Hits
1996 Great Gospel Songs
1997 Elvis: A Tribute to the King Intersound
1998 Now & Again: The Best of Ronnie McDowell
2002 Ronnie McDowell Country Curb
Ronnie McDowell with Bill Pinkney's Original Drifters
2006 Live at Church Street Station Acrobat
2009 Lost in Dirty Dancing Curb
"—" denotes the album failed to chart or not released


Year Title Chart Positions Album
US Country US CAN Country
1977 "Only the Lonely" The King Is Gone
"The King Is Gone"A 13 13 8
1978 "I Love You, I Love You, I Love You" 5 81 5 I Love You, I Love You, I Love You
"Here Comes the Reason I Love" 15 26
"This Is a Holdup" 39 Singles only
"I Just Wanted You to Know" (w/ The Jordanaires) 59
"Animal" (w/ The Jordanaires) 59
"Bridge Washed Out"
1979 "World's Most Perfect Woman" 18 35 Rockin' You Easy, Lovin' You Slow
"Love Me Now" 26
"He's a Cowboy from Texas" 68 Singles only
"Kiss and Say Goodbye"
"Knight in Faded Blue Jeans"
1980 "Never Seen a Mountain So High" 29 25 Rockin' You Easy, Lovin' You Slow
"Lovin' a Livin' Dream" 37 42 Love So Many Ways
"How Far Do You Want to Go" 80
"Gone" 36 Going, Going, Gone
1981 "Wandering Eyes" 2 27
"Older Women" 1 1 Good Time Lovin' Man
"Watchin' Girls Go By" 4 3
1982 "I Just Cut Myself (On a Piece of Her Broken Heart)" 11 24 Love To Burn
"Step Back" 7
1983 "Personally" 10 11 Personally
"You're Gonna Ruin My Bad Reputation" 1 1
"You Made a Wanted Man of Me" 3 4
1984 "I Dream of Women Like You" 7 6 Country Boy's Heart
"I Got a Million of 'Em" 8 4 Willing
1985 "In a New York Minute" 5 1 In a New York Minute
"Love Talks" 9 14
1986 "All Tied Up" 6 1 All Tied Up in Love
"When You Hurt, I Hurt" 37
"Lovin' That Crazy Feelin'" 30 27
1987 "Make Me Late for Work Today" 55 59 Single only
1988 "It's Only Make Believe" 8 5 I'm Still Missing You
"I'm Still Missing You" 36 44
"Suspicion" 27 57
1989 "Never Too Old to Rock 'n' Roll" (w/ Jerry Lee Lewis) 50
"Sea of Heartbreak" 39 American Music
"Who'll Turn Out the Lights" 69
1990 "She's a Little Past Forty" 50 The Best of Ronnie McDowell
"Unchained Melody" 26 Unchained Melody
1993 "Yippy Ti-Yi-Yo" Country Dances
1994 "I'll Make Love to You" Single only
"What's It Gonna Take" Greatest Hits
1997 "Love Me Tender" (w/ The Elvis Originals) Elvis: A Tribute to a King
"Tupelo's Too Far" (w/ The Elvis Originals)
2008 "Hey Mr. Oilman" Single only
2009 "Lost In Dirty Dancing" Lost In Dirty Dancing
  • APeaked at #4 on the RPM Adult Contemporary Tracks chart at #16 on the RPM Top Singles chart in Canada.


External links


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