Perry Como’s Last Hit Was Country

Pop singer Perry Como’s final hit record was a country one. The revered crooner died Saturday (May 12) at his home in Florida at the age of 88. Como had his first pop hit in 1944 with “Long Ago and Far Away” and his last in 1974 with “Christmas Dreams,” a selection from the soundtrack to the movie The Odessa Files. Then, in 1976, his version of “Just Out of Reach,” Solomon Burke’s 1961 pop favorite, came in at No. 100 on the country charts, where it remained for one week only. Como’s greater contribution to country music was his openness to country performers on his popular television shows. Eddy Arnold broadened his audience considerably as Como’s 1952 summer replacement on CBS-TV.