Fagus Native Named to Rock-A-Billy HOF

Thursday, December 19, 2013
Jim Teachenor during a 1958 television performance

Area native Jim Teachenor will be recognized for a lifetime of entertaining in January, as he is slated to be inducted into the International Rock-A-Billy Hall of Fame in Jackson, Tenn. The announcement was made earlier this fall, with the official induction ceremony set for 7 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 10.

Teachenor began his musical career at a very early age. The son of a sharecropper and raised in Fagus, Mo., he passed the time listening to the Grand Ole Opry and playing music with his family.

His first public performance was in 1956. Afterward, he quickly gained popularity in the Mid-South and formed the group "The Panthers," in 1957, with bassist, Howard McCormick, and guitarist, Johnny Brooks.

Jim Teachenor today

Billed as "Jim Teachenor and his rockin' piano with The Panthers," he had the opportunity to perform with and/or headline many of the same shows and club circuits as Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Harold Jenkins (later known as Conway Twitty), Narvel Felts, Bill Rice, Jerry Foster, Fred Horrell and The Flames, Charlie Feathers, Carl Mann, Teddy Redell, Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis and many others.

He also played piano on various rockabilly and country records, including the original recording of, "Walking The Milky Way." Teachenor also performed on many radio stations in the 1950's and 1960's, often called the "hottest piano player from Memphis to St. Louis."

He gained a much larger country following in the 1970's and 80's, spending more of his time in Nashville. In 1988, he recorded his self-titled Country EP, which included only songs he had written, at Joe Keene Studios, in Kennett.

During the 1990's, and into the 2000's, he continued to write and record songs, for himself and other artists, and made many public appearances.

Teachenor was also featured in the 2012 Clement Railroad Hotel Museum's exhibit, "Our Heritage In Music".

He has been honored by the states of Kentucky and Tennessee for his contribution to early Rock and Roll music and was commissioned as both a Kentucky Colonel and a Tennessee Colonel Aide De Camp. The Tennessee House Of Representatives also issued a Proclamation declaring him a "National Treasure" and commending him for his achievements and musical legacy.

Teachenor is the 391st person to be inducted into the Rockabilly Hall Of Fame and is permanently featured in the "Pioneers Of Rockabilly" exhibit at the International Rock-A-Billy Hall Of Fame and Museum in Jackson.

He continues to perform rockabilly, country and gospel music and is highly respected in the Rock-N-Roll community.

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