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Pre-July 2009 Press Archives

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11/8/2007 History of rockabilly highlighted through music

McMINNVILLE – Jerry Naylor, former lead singer of The Crickets, and Steve Halliday, best-selling Christian author, will present “The Rockabilly Legends: They Called it Rockabilly Long Before They Called it Rock and Roll” on Thursday, Nov. 29, at 7:30 p.m. in the Richard and Lucille Ice Auditorium at Linfield College.

The presentation will include a demonstration of the history of rockabilly music through performances by Naylor and Halliday of the foundational songs of the movement. They will be accompanied by the Bethel Baptist Church Worship Team Group and other musicians from the Portland and Yamhill County areas. The performance will close with a tribute to Buddy Holly, who Naylor replaced as lead singer of The Crickets after Holly's death in 1959.

Naylor and Halliday's latest work, “The Rockabilly Legends: They Called it Rockabilly Long Before They Called it Rock and Roll,” is a DVD, CD and book project seven years in the making and contains never-before-seen performance footage and photographs, as well as exclusive interviews with rockabilly legends like Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley and Jerry Lee Lewis, among others. The program recounts their journey from the cotton fields and country churches of the rural South to the honky tonks and recording studios of the big city, and then to the world’s stage, where their music gave birth to rock and roll. The work includes a 12-track CD of master recordings by the rockabilly legends; a four-CD set containing 80 master recordings; and a two-DVD set containing the original three-hour documentary, plus 45 minutes of bonus footage. There is also a companion coffee table book by the same title that was co-written by Naylor and Halliday.

Naylor is a record producer, songwriter, radio and television personality, film and television producer, and Grammy-nominated solo recording artist. He was inducted into the West Texas Music Hall of Fame in 1998 and the Rockabilly Hall of Fame in 2000, and was a regular on the music variety series “Shindig” and the host of the TV series “Music City USA” in the 1960s. He was also the host of the radio show “Continental Country” in the 1970s. Naylor currently resides in McMinnville.

Halliday is the president of Crown Media, Ltd., a literary company that specializes in book editing and collaboration. He has co-written with Tim LaHaye, Gary Smalley, Luis Palau, Dave Dravecky and many others, and is the author of several books himself, including the Gold Medallion winner "How Majestic Is Thy Name." Halliday was a senior editor with Multnomah Press and Questar Publishers, and before that worked as a reporter for two newspapers in southern Wisconsin. He holds a master of divinity degree from Western Conservative Baptist Seminary in Portland and a bachelor of arts degree in journalism and Spanish from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. He currently resides in Portland.

The Readings at the Nick series is sponsored by the Friends of Nicholson Library and Friends of the McMinnville Public Library. For more information, contact Susan Barnes Whyte, college librarian, at 503-883-2517.