Ray Quarles Edenton|
November 3, 1926 (age 95)
Mineral, Virginia U.S.
A member of a musical family, Edenton grew up near Mineral, Virginia. His first instrument was a banjo ukelele, and he was performing with his two brothers and cousins at square dances around the area by age 6.
After serving in the United States Army during World War II, he joined guitarist Joe Maphis as the bassist in a group called the Korn Krackers, appearing on the Old Dominion Barn Dance radio show on Richmond, Virginia station WRVA. He subsequently moved to Knoxville, Tennessee, where he worked at radio station WNOX and was temporarily sidelined with tuberculosis before moving to Nashville, Tennessee and beginning to play acoustic guitar on the Grand Ole Opry.
Considered one of Nashville's most prolific studio musicians, Edenton played on more than 12,000 recording sessions as a member of The Nashville A-Team. He played on his first session, American country music singer Red Kirk's recording of "Lovesick Blues" for Mercury Records, in 1949, but his first appearance on a major hit came on Webb Pierce's 1953 single "There Stands the Glass. Edenton played on 26 of Pierce's 27 chart-topping country singles and also on such well-known recordings as the Everly Brothers' "Bye Bye Love" and "Wake Up Little Susie", Marty Robbins' "Singing the Blues" and Roger Miller's "King of the Road".
Other artists Edenton accompanied on record include Julie Andrews, the Beach Boys, jazz vibraphonist Gary Burton, Sammy Davis Jr., Henry Mancini, Reba McEntire, Elvis Presley, Leon Russell and Neil Young.
Though Edenton could play lead guitar — and a variety of instruments — he is best known as an acoustic and rhythm guitar player.
Edenton retired in 1991.
- "Ray Quarles Edenton: United States Public Records, 1970-2009". 2000. https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:KPF8-725.
- Kienzle, Rich (2012). "Ray Edenton". In Kingsbury, Paul; McCall, Michael; Rumble, John. The Encyclopedia of Country Music (2nd ed.). New York: Oxford University Press. p. 151. ISBN 978-0-19-539563-1. OCLC 778339718. http://www.worldcat.org/title/encyclopedia-of-country-music/oclc/778339718/viewport.
- "Ray Edenton". https://www.namm.org/library/oral-history/ray-edenton. Retrieved 21 January 2018.
- McCall, Michael. "Nashville Cats: Salute to Ray Edenton". https://countrymusichalloffame.org/nashville-cats/ray-edenton. Retrieved 21 January 2018.
- Friskics-Warren, Bill (5 October 2007). "Country Music Hall of Fame Salutes 'Nashville Cat'". Nashville, Tennessee: The Tennessean. p. F3.
- Roland, Tom; Orr, Jay (21 June 1998). "Nashville's 'A Team': The Unsung Heroes of the Nashville Sound". Nashville, Tennessee: The Tennessean. pp. 135–142.
- "Ray Edenton: Biography & History". https://www.allmusic.com/artist/ray-edenton-mn0000411455. Retrieved 21 January 2018.
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