Johnnie Ray

American singer and pianist (1927–1990)

John Alvin "Johnnie" Ray (10 January 1927 – 24 February 1990) was an American singer, songwriter, and pianist.

Ray, c. 1952.


  • I just felt like God picked me up in his arms [and said], 'Johnnie Ray, I love you', and kissed me. I'm very humble and grateful for this elevation to the big time. But we all have to come down, and it won't leave me with a complex if I do. I know this thing might go over like a lead balloon, but I can always go back to that movie extra deal.
  • I was walking down by the river. I lay down under a tree. I was broke. I felt pretty low. Then I looked up at the sky—all blue except for one little, white, fleecy cloud. The words came to me for the song—quicker than it's taking me to tell it to you. I got up—and I had new hope. That was the turning point in my life.
  • It's not a handicap, because when you go to bed, I take [the hearing aid] off, and the phones ring, the maids vacuum, people knock on doors, and I don't hear any of that.
    • On his partial deafness, interview with Hugh Downs (1977)
  • Americans are the most over-entertained people on the face of the earth.
    • Interview with Dennis Hunt in Las Vegas, c. 1982
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