Bobby Lee Trammell
Bobby Lee Trammell
@bobby-lee-trammell
 

Bobby Lee Trammell’s exploits as an outlandish and over-the-top recording and performing artist are hard to jibe with his ending up as a member of the Arkansas legislature. But that was the topsy-turvey world of Bobby Lee Trammell, who was born on January 31, 1934 in Jonesboro, Arkansas. His career took off when he moved to California, where Fabor and Radio Records owner Fabor Robison signed the singer with a reputation for Elvis-like performances and movements. His first single comprised his own songs, "Shirley Lee" and "I Sure Do Love You, Baby.” They did not chart, but Ricky Nelson did his own rockin’ version of "Shirley Lee." Even so, Bobby Lee Trammell failed to be invited to join The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet, which he had auditioned for.

Fabor Robison next recorded Trammell with an orchestra and chorus for another Trammell-penned song, "You Mostest Girl,” but the demands of such an elaborate session freaked Trammell out and he almost quit recording. His song, “Uh Oh,” was the 1962 breakout hit for Francoise Hardy, who used almost the same arrangement for her French recording debut, rendered in French as “Oh Oh Cherie.” Francoise Hardy also did a German version of the song, which remained alive and fresh through samples by the Australian group Avalanche and a European eyeglass commercial.

Trammell’s antics overshadowed his singing and songwriting. He caused a broadcast tower to collapse as part of a practical joke that got him barred from performing in California. He destroyed Jerry Lee Lewis's piano during a fight before a performance.  After he retired from performing, he was elected to the Arkansas House of Representatives in 1997, where he served a single term. He died six years later on February 20, 2008, in his birthplace of Jonesboro, Arkansas.

 

Fabor

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