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Gordon Stoker–Tenor Singer with The Jordanaires–Passes at 88

Gordon Stoker, tenor singer for Country Music Hall of Fame vocal group the Jordanaires, died Wednesday morning, March 27, 2013, at Alive Hospice in Nashville. He was 88.

The Jordanaires’ harmonies can be heard on some of the most famous recordings from the 1960s and early ‘70s, particularly the Elvis Presley classics “Don’t Be Cruel,” “Are You Lonesome Tonight,” and “It’s Now or Never.”

An era has definitely ended with this gentleman’s passing. I was working on the air on 650 WSM-AM/Nashville (flagship station of the Grand Ole Opry) one weekend afternoon in either 2001 or ’02, when the studio line rang. I answered, and the man on the phone asked for WSM and Opry announcer Eddie Stubbs; I told him Eddie had already left, but I could take a message for him. The voice on the phone said, “This is Gordon Stoker…” and I blurted out, “FROM THE JORDANAIRES?!” He said, “Yes,” and we proceeded to talk (off the air) for about 5 or 10 minutes.

I had the opportunity to tell him  how much I admired his group’s amazing body of work, and how I admired their place in music history. He was very kind, and spoke to me as though we’d known each other for years! Again, a real gentleman! Now that you’ve “crossed over the river Jordan,” rest in peace, Mr. Stoker.

Click here to read the obituary published by Music Row magazine.

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