Jim Reeves

Jim Reeves


8/20/1923, Galloway, Texas



Birth Name

James Travis Reeves


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He was known as "Gentleman Jim," and his smooth singing voice won him worldwide fame. His music still sells, even over 40 years after his death. Jim Reeves was the youngest child in a farming family born in Panola County, Texas. His father died when Jim was less…more

Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • The National Transportation Safety Board ruled the cause of Reeves' plane crash was his inexperience in flying in bad weather and the fact that he was not cleared for IFR (instrument flight rules), which would have been necessary when flying in bad weather such as he encountered when returning to Nashville. Ironically, this was also listed as the cause of the plane crash that killed Patsy Cline, Cowboy Copas, and Hawkshaw Hawkins 16 months earlier; and Reeves had been quoted as saying he would "never" make such a mistake.

    • Country singer Mel Tills stated in his liner notes to the Reeves album Missing You that Reeves offered to pay for speech therapy to help Tillis overcome his stuttering when Tillis was a young, struggling songwriter.

    • Although Jim was born in 1923, his biographies with RCA stated he was born in 1924. Even his Hall of Fame plaque has the incorrect birth year of 1924 on it.

    • The only gold record Jim earned during his lifetime was for "He'll Have to Go," which sold over 3 million copies in 1960.

    • British actor/comedian Vic Reeves took his stage surname from Jim Reeves because Reeves is one of Vic's favorite singers.

    • Because of his enormous popularity in South Africa, Jim recorded an entire album (12 songs) of songs in Afrikaas (Cape Dutch).

    • On the album Jim Reeves on Stage, Jim said that his favorite singer was Lefty Frizzell.

    • Jim was nominated for four Grammy awards, including for "He'll Have to Go" (1960) and "Distant Drums" (1966). He did not win any of the four.

    • Legendary musician and producer Chet Atkins produced most of Jim's records for RCA Victor.

    • The late Buddy Killen's autobiography, By the Seat of My Pants, has an extensive account of Jim's life and the search for his crashed plane. Killen was a songwriter and producer in Nashville.

    • Reeves was an accomplished songwriter. He wrote over 70 songs. Ronnie Milsap had a #1 hit with Reeves' song "Am I Losing You."

    • A biography on Jim, Like a Moth to a Flame: The Jim Reeves Story, written by Michael Streisguth, was published in 1998. The book received criticism from friends and fans of Reeves for what many considered an unfair portrayal of Reeves' vices.

    • Jim was one of the first people inducted into the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame, in 1998. The Texas Country Music Hall of Fame is located in Reeves' hometown of Carthage, Texas.

  • Quotes

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  • New Jim Reeves vocals/songs released

    It is inaccurate to say that Bear Family released all of Jim Reeves' recordings (though the company continues to make this fatuous claim). Starting in 2003, the U.S. based Indie label, VoiceMasters, began issuing a series of a dozen CDs, each of which features previously unreleased Reeves vocals and new songs. A total of 88 unissued tracks (NOT included in the Bear compilation) were thus debuted by VoiceMasters, and solely by that company. VM has also put out several CDs containing new overdubs, featuring updated instrumental backing -- the first in more than 20 years -- giving Jim Reeves' music a contemporary flavor. During the Christmas 2008 season, a VoiceMaster track called "I'm A Hit Again," which was Jim's last known recording, made it to the #1 position on radio playlists in England, Ireland and Scotland, where it remained for 6 weeks. Another new overdub of Reeves' big hit, "Distant Drums," ranked #3.moreless