‘Down in the Boondocks’ Billy Joe Royal Dies in his Sleep, age 73

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Singer Billy Joe Royal Has Died Aged 73
Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

By Naja Rayne, People Magazine

10/07/2015

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0nYhDvktiJo

 

Country and pop singer Billy Joe Royal has died aged 73, multiple reports confirm.According to NBC’s Nashville affiliate WSMV.com, Royal unexpectedly died in his sleep at his home in North Carolina on Tuesday.In the sixties, Royal was signed to Columbia Records where he released hits like “Down in the Boondocks,” “I Knew You When,” and “Cherry Hill Park,” which was his last hit in the Top-40 charts, according to Billboard.

After getting a brief taste of success, Royal reportedly moved through multiple smaller labels before settling down with Atlantic Records in Nashville.

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1 COMMENT

  1. If for nothing else, Billy should be remembered for nurturing the future career of Joe South.
    Down In the Boondocks was written by Joe (who, himself, recently passed away) and led other artists such as Deep Purple (Hush) to cover his tunes. That gave Joe the impetus to further his own singing career and his self-written Games People Play won a Grammy and helped guarantee him a string of follow-on hits.

    Billy Joe, of course, took a few years off and rebounded with Cherry Hill Park. My fave Billy Joe tune remains I Knew You When.

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