[Please free to share!] ——— As president of the Missouri Music Hall of Fame®, I'm happy to announce the 2019 inductees:
• Tina Turner
• Arthur Pryor
• Leroy Van D**e (bios below).
I was unable to be there for the presentation last night, but opened the ceremony via Skype from here in France, prior to Mr. Travis Urban officiating as MC.
Thanks and CONGRATS TO ALL!
Be sure to visit our museum space at: St. Joseph Museum, 3406 Frederick Ave., St Joseph, Missouri.
TINA TURNER (1939- b. Nutbush, Tennessee, active in Missouri, 1940-)
Category: Musician/Performer (double induction)
Ms. Turner was a childhood resident of St Louis and first heard Ike Turner, her future husband, perform in East St. Louis with his group, “Kings of Rhythm.” She soon joined the band and in ca. 1960 the group was renamed the “Ike & Tina Turner Review”. That group was active until ca. 1976 when Ms. Turner launched her iconic solo career.
Her solo launch included contracting with R&R Records directed by famed producer, Juggy Murray, who commented that Turner’s voice “...sounded like screaming dirt.” That earthy compliment still defines the intense power, control, and explosive stage presence for which Ms. Turner is so internationally famous.
Her prodigious output and expansive solo career include 10 studio albums, 11 international tours, and 15 film credits, including her roles in “Gimme Shelter” (1970) with the Rolling Stones, the rock opera, “Tommy” (1975) which also included Eric Clapton, Ann-Margret, Elton John, and Jack Nicholson, and her cameo appearance in “The Last Action Hero” (1993) with Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Ms. Turner’s most recognized film role to date has been “Aunty Entity” in “Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome” (1975), with Mel Gibson.
As a 12-time Grammy Award Winner and three-time recipient of the Grammy Hall of Fame Awards, Ms. Turner also earned a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2018. She has been honored by Rolling Stone Magazine as one of the 100 greatest artists of all time and is also cited as 17th on their list of the greatest 100 singers of all time.
Ms. Turner has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She is likewise celebrated on the St. Louis Walk of Fame and The Missouri Music Wall of Fame in St. Joseph, Missouri. In 1991 she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and in 2005 Ms. Turner received the Kennedy Center Honors award presented to her at the White House by then president George W. Bush.
ARTHUR PRYOR (September 22, 1869-June 18, 1942)
Arthur Pryor (September 22, 1869-June 18, 1942) was likely born in the family’s home on 16th street between Sylvanie and Messanie in St. Joseph, Missouri. This contradicts popular belief that he was born in the second floor of the Lyceum Theater in St. Joseph, however that theater was not built until ca. 1913—long after Pryor’s birth. The confusion may stem from the fact that Pryor’s father died in the family’s 2nd-floor apartment in the Lyceum.
He began trombone studies at a young age and was performing by the age of 11. In 1892, Pryor won a position in the band of John Philip Sousa, a post that he held for 12 years during which he played an estimated 10,000 solos and was ultimately awarded the position as Assistant Conductor for Sousa from 1895-1903. In that role, Mr. Pryor also conducted Sousa’s band for most of their recordings.
While with Sousa’s band, Pryor gave concerts throughout the US and Europe, including performances for King Edward VII (England) and Czar Nicholas II (Russia). Following his concerts in Germany all trombonists of the German Army bands were ordered to hear him play and Pryor’s virtuosity on the trombone was so astounding that they insisted on taking his trombone apart, as they assumed he had somehow altered the instrument to be able to play at such an astounding level. A reported quote from a fellow German trombonist was “No one can play so well. It is a Yankee trick!”
Pryor composed over 300 works including three light operas, yet his most celebrated work is the marching band composition, “The Whistler and his Dog” which uses the piccolo to imitate a dog owner attempting to signal his dog by whistling.
Following his father’s death (1902) Mr. Pryor left Sousa’s band to found the highly recognized, “The Pryor Band” which was active for over 30 years. Pryor retired in 1933 and passed at his home in New Jersey in 1942.
LEROY VAN D**E (b. October 4, 1929, Pettis County, Missouri)
Mr. Van D**e is a country music singer and performer, most active from the mid 1950s through the 70s. His estimated. 500 songs and country standards include, “The Auctioneer,” and his best-known hit, “Walk on By,” which earned him a Grammy Award, reached number one in the US country charts (for 19 weeks), number five on the UK Singles Chart, and was cited as one of the “Greatest All-Time Country Songs” by Billboard Magazine.
Van D**e was signed to Mercury Records (Nashville) and later to Warner Brothers who released his hit, “Roses from a Stranger.” On October 22, 1962 he was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry and thereafter became a regular act at that iconic venue.
In 1967 he starred in the film, “What Am I Bid?” and accepted the “Founding President’s Award” from the Country Music Association that same year. Van D**e was also the first country solo act to appear regularly in Las Vegas and more recently, shows in Branson, Missouri.
In 2018 he oversaw the release of “Cowboy Country” (Sun Records). Mr. Van D**e continues to perform at various music events throughout the US.