Darrell McCall is a singer, songwriter and musician from Philadelphia. He is known for his songs “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” and “Angel in Disguise.”
The darrell mccall songs is a singer who has had success in the country music industry. Darrell McCall was born on May 1, 1945 in Nashville, Tennessee.
Darrell McCall was a hardcore country singer to the core, singing rough honky tonk for the most of his career without regard for fads or fashions, despite his early pop hits. McCall rose to fame as a member of the Little Dippers in 1960, but left the group the following year, and by 1963, his sound had shifted to pure country. During the 1960s, he sang both conventional country and honky tonk, but he ultimately gravitated toward roadhouse country. As a consequence, his sales have plummeted. Over the course of his career, McCall had a few successes, slipping into the charts every few years as hardcore country became more mainstream, but for the most part, he remained a semi-popular musician with a devoted cult following.
McCall, who was born and reared in New Jasper, Ohio, started his musical career at the age of 15 when he was hired as a Saturday morning DJ on a local radio station. At the same time, he was performing as a musician at neighborhood dances and gatherings. He enlisted in the Army after graduating from high school and was stationed in Kentucky. In 1958, he and his boyhood buddy Johnny Paycheck relocated to Nashville after completing their term of service. McCall and Paycheck tried to record as a pair but were unable to do so. McCall went on to work as a studio harmony singer, singing on recordings by Faron Young, George Jones, and Ray Price, to name a few. In a short time, his studio work transformed into road work, as he played bass and sang harmony with a variety of traveling bands, including Young’s, Price’s, and Hank Williams Jr.’s.
McCall met Buddy Killen, a well-known Nashville producer and publisher, during a recording session in 1959. Killen was so impressed with Darrell’s skills that he invited him to join the Little Dippers, a group that included Hurshel Wigintin, Delores Dinning, and Emily Gilmore. The Little Dippers scored one big pop success, the Top Ten song “Forever,” in 1960, thanks to McCall’s agreement. He got a solo deal with Capitol the next year. He recorded two pop songs for the label in 1961, “My Kind of Lovin’” and “Call the Zoo,” but both bombed, and he was dismissed. Following his failures in the pop industry, McCall returned to country music in 1962 and secured a deal with Phillips. “A Stranger Was Here,” his first — and, as it turned out, largest — country hit, was released in January 1963. The song lasted eight weeks on the charts, peaking at number 17, and appeared to be a promising start to his country career, but he was unable to follow up with a success, despite singing the theme to the Paul Newman picture Hud the same year.
In the mid-’60s, McCall decided to take a break from music and pursue an acting career, which he began in 1965. In the same year, he starred in the films Nashville Rebel and What Am I Bid, and the following year, he featured in Road to Nashville and What Am I Bid. McCall also worked as a cowboy in the Southwest at the time, appearing in a few small rodeos. He didn’t return to recording until 1968, when he signed with Wayside Records, an indie company. He scored four modest successes with the label over the following two years — “I’d Love to Live With You Again,” “Wall of Pictures,” “Hurry Up,” and “The Arms of My Weakness” — and released one album, Meet Darrell McCall, in 1970, which was distributed by Mercury. McCall’s deal with Wayside ended in 1971, and he didn’t negotiate another recording contract right after. Tree International signed McCall as a professional composer when Hank Williams, Jr. brought his song “Eleven Roses” (which he co-wrote with Lamar Morris) to number one.
McCall did not resume recording until 1974, when he signed with Atlantic Records. “There’s Still a Lot of Love in San Antone,” his first song for the label, almost made the national Top 50 that year. He left Atlantic in 1975 for Columbia, where he enjoyed his most successful spell on the charts since the early 1960s. Despite the fact that his first song for the label, “Pins and Needles (In My Heart),” didn’t do any better than “There’s Still a Lot of Love in San Antone,” his second single, “Lily Dale,” a duet with Willie Nelson, made the country Top 40. McCall’s newfound fame owed in part to the popularity of outlaw country and how well he fit into the genre’s rough and ready musical style. Cash Box magazine called “Lily Dale” the Best Duet of 1977, and it was followed by “Dreams of a Dreamer,” McCall’s first solo Top 40 success since 1963. Of course, the short McCall resurgence started to fade in 1978, when outlaw country’s grip on the country charts began to wane. His songs “Down the Roads of Daddy’s Dreams” and “The Weeds Outlived the Roses” both failed to chart, and Columbia dismissed him shortly after.
He signed with Hillside Records in 1980 and had just one successful song, a duet with Curtis Potter on “San Antonio Medley.” After reaching the bottom reaches of the country charts in the spring, he moved labels to RCA, where his song “Long Line of Empties” almost made the Top 40 in the autumn. At the time, country radio’s and the genre’s audiences had totally moved away from outlaw country, opting instead for the slick, rock-influenced textures of urban cowboy. McCall’s recording career suffered as a result. He only recorded infrequently over the following four years, most notably as the uncredited “friend” on Connie Hanson and Friend’s modest 1982 hit “There’s Still a Lot of Love in San Antone.” With “Memphis in May,” published on Indigo Records two years later, Elvis scored his last charting success. In 1986, McCall recorded two albums: Reunion, a collaboration with his former backing band the Tennessee Volunteers (issued on BGM), and Hot Texas Country, a duet with Johnny Bush (published on BGM).
Following 1986, McCall basically stopped recording, but he continued to perform live and work with the Muscular Dystrophy Association on a regular basis. McCall and his wife Mona Vary, who used to perform in Audrey Williams’ band, spent the rest of the 1980s and much of the 1990s in their Texas house.
Darrell McCall is a singer, songwriter, and guitarist. He has released five studio albums and one EP in his career so far. Reference: diane mccall obituary.
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