Singer-Yodeler Kenny Roberts Dead at 85

Country singer and champion yodeler Kenny Roberts died Sunday (April 29) at his home in Athol, Mass., at age 85. He was best known for his series of hits on Coral Records in 1949-50, including the Top 5 novelty tune "I Never See Maggie Alone" and the Top 10 "Choc'late Ice Cream Cone." He is the father of talent booking agents Bobby Roberts, CEO of the Bobby Roberts Company, and Jeff Roberts, CEO of Jeff Roberts & Associates. Born George Kingsbury in Lenoir City, Tenn., Kenny Roberts was raised in Greenfield, Mass. Influenced by Yodelin' Slim Clark, he made his radio debut at 15 and was named the Eastern States Yodeling Champion when he was 17. He went on to star in radio shows in New Hampshire, Iowa, Indiana and Ohio. In 1962, he began appearing regularly on the Wheeling Jamboree in West Virginia. Roberts also made television appearances on Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts and NBC's Today Show. The Down Homers, one of the early bands Roberts played in, also featured future rock 'n' roll pioneer Bill Haley.

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