|Bob Daisey and Eddy Arnold in 1969||Bob Daisey and Eddy Arnold in 1996|
Hello Eddy Arnold Fans:
My name is Bob Daisey and I reside in Dover, Delaware.
I can't say I remember the first time I actually heard Eddy Arnold sing, but I can say with great conviction, whenever it was, I decided then and there he was the best singer I ever heard and from that day on I was hooked. I remember so well those early days laying in bed on Saturday nights and listening to the Grand Ole Opry and waiting in anticipation for Eddy Arnold's portion of the show. I remember him singing such songs as "Mommy Please Stay Home With Me" and "Many Tears Ago" to mention a few. I have followed his career from the early Ralston Purina days to Carnegie Hall and way beyond.
When I was a small boy I used to hang around this Service Station with some other kids because they had a Pinball Machine and Jukebox. I hung around the Jukebox because it had Eddy Arnold's recording of "Molly Darling" and I would listen to it practically all day, whenever someone would play it, which was often, or if I had a nickel to spare myself. I loved that song and a few years later when I got my first phonograph at Christmas time, the first record I bought was "Molly Darling." Needless to say I played it many, many times. Of course when "Bouquet of Roses" and "I'll Hold You in My Heart" came along who could forget them? All three were recorded in 1947 with different release dates. I always listened to the top Ten Country Hits on Saturday and it wasn't unusual for Eddy to have four or five among the top ten with the number one spot usually belonging to him.
Actually in those days, they called it the Hillbilly Hit Parade. I always knew even from those great early recordings with the Ting-A-Ling sound of "Little" Roy Wiggins steel guitar that Eddy Arnold's voice was too good to be limited to just one kind of music and so later on in his career he proved just that. He switched to strings and had his greatest hit "Make the World Go Away" and became accepted by both Country and Pop. In my opinion, Eddy Arnold is and always has been one of America's greatest entertainers. Although he has won countless awards, there are times he doesn't get the recognition he so rightly deserves.
Although I have been a fan of Eddy Arnold all of my life, the first time I met him in person was in 1969 at Green Hill Shopping Center in Nashville, Tennessee where Eddy was autographing his autobiography, IT'S A LONG WAY FROM CHESTER COUNTY. While he was autographing the book for me my wife, Gisele, took a picture of the ceremony and today I still treasure that moment and photograph.
It's a day I'll always remember meeting my all time favorite singer for the first time but I regret I didn't manage to tell him how big a fan I was.
Eddy's home is located on Granny White Pike in Brentwood, Tennessee. I took a photo of his residence in the spring of 1979. His home is no longer visible from the pike as trees have grown to such proportions and height that even Tour Guides can only point to the area that he lives. Eddy and Sally have lived there for many years and find no need or desire to move to a bigger or fancier home. In the seventies when Eddy was doing commercials for Log Cabin Syrup, which ran for a number of years, they filmed it on location in this very home.
The last picture I had taken with Eddy was in November 1996 backstage at Valley Forge Music Fair in Devon, Pennsylvania. This was Eddy's last concert at the Music Fair, which he had performed on numerous occasions for many years. The Valley Forge Music Fair had been a showplace for entertainers from Hollywood to Nashville for over thirty years but was now closing its doors at the end of December.
I knew this would be the last time I would see Mr. Arnold perform there so I decided to try and meet him again. Two days before the show I called his manager, Gerard (Jerry) Purcell in New York and explained I was a lifetime fan and would like to visit backstage. Being very understanding he agreed and he told me to come to the backstage door after the show and ask for him and he would get me in. True to his word, he let me in and there sat Eddy laughing and joking in that easy manner of his. The little boy in front of me gave him a bouquet of flowers and he was really impressed with that. Despite all the years I had been a fan and the numerous times I had seen him perform I was still very much in awe of him in his presence on a one on one situation. However, I did manage to do better than I did in 1969 for this time I told him he was my all time favorite singer, but I said it so fast I don't know if he understood me or not. Anyway, I had the pleasure meeting him once again and the gentleman in back of me was kind enough to take my camera and snap a picture of us. We are both a little older this time but he is still the great entertainer and I like to think I am his number one fan.
Robert J. Daisey
332 Mimosa Avenue
Dover, DE 19904-4839
Bob: Many thanks for sharing this information with Eddy Arnold fans around the world.
Eddy Arnold's home in Brentwood, Tennessee in the Spring of 1979