Gene Autry

Induction Year: 1970

Birth Name: Orvon Grover Autry

Birth Date: 09-29-1907

Place of Birth: Tioga, Texas

Death Date: 10-02-1998

Place of Death: Studio City, California

Gene Autry was a multimedia superstar in his heyday in the 1930s and 1940s: a singing cowboy in Hollywood movies, on national radio programs, in live performance, on records and on television. During his long career, he owned a record label, three song-publishing companies, considerable Los Angeles real estate, a luxury hotel, a chain of radio stations, oil interests and the baseball team the Los Angeles Angels.

He initially worked in Texas as a railroad telegrapher. His earliest entertaining experience was traveling in the Fields Brothers Marvelous Medicine Show. In 1928, he began singing on KVOO radio in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He signed with the American Record Corporation (later to become Columbia Records) in 1929.

Stardom arrived in 1931 when he began performing on the Saturday-night National Barn Dance radio program, from Chicago on WLS. Two years later, NBC radio picked up the show for national network airing. In 1932, Autry had his first of many hit records, "That Silver Haired Daddy of Mine."

He traveled to Hollywood and appeared in his first movie, In Old Santa Fe, in 1934. He quickly became the premier singing-cowboy star in Hollywood and subsequently starred in 92 more feature films. By 1939, he was one of the biggest box-office attractions in America. His nationally broadcast Melody Ranch radio show aired continuously on the CBS radio network from 1940 to 1956. In 1950, he became one of the first movie stars with his own TV series on CBS. His lifetime record sales are reportedly 100 million units, and he is credited with authorship of more than 200 songs.

Gene Autry is the only individual with five stars in the Hollywood Walk of Fame. He was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1969 and published his autobiography, Back in the Saddle Again, in 1978. In 1988, he opened his Gene Autry Museum of the American West in Los Angeles.

"At Mail Call Today"

(written with Fred Rose)

Gene Autry1945 #1 country
Red Foley1945 #3 country

"Back in the Saddle Again"

(written with Ray Whitley)

Gene Autry1939 

"Be Honest with Me"

(written with Fred Rose)

Bing Crosby1941 #19 pop
Gene Autry1941 #23 pop
Freddy Martin1941 #24 pop

"Don't Hang Around Me Anymore"

(written with Denver Darling, Vaughn Horton)

Gene Autry1945 #4 country

"Don't Live a Lie"

(written with Johnny Bond)

Gene Autry1946 #4 country


(written with Johnny Marvin)

Gene Autry1937 
Roy Rogers1938 

"Goodbye Little Darlin' Goodbye"

(written with Johnny Marvin)

Gene Autry1940 #20 pop
Dick Robertson1940 #22 pop
Johnny Cash1959 #22 country

"Here Comes Santa Claus"

(written with Oakley Haldeman)

Gene Autry1948 #4 country, #8 pop
Elvis Presley1957 
Bob B. Soxx and The Blue Jeans1963 
Bob Dylan2009 
Mariah Carey2010 

"I Hang My Head and Cry"

(written with Ray Whitley, Fred Rose)

Gene Autry1944 #4 country

"I Want to Be Sure"

(written with Merle Travis)

Gene Autry1946 #4 country

"I Wish I Had Never Met Sunshine"

(written with Dale Evans, Oakley Haldeman)

Gene Autry1946 #3 country
Roy Rogers1946 
Wesley Tuttle1946 #5 country

"I'll Be Back"

(written with Eddie Dean, Rex Preis, Bill Bryan)

Gene Autry1945 #7 country

"Silver Spurs (On the Golden Stairs)"

(written with Cindy Walker)

Gene Autry1946 #4 country

"That Silver Haired Daddy of Mine"

(written with Jimmy Long)

Gene Autry1931 #7 pop
Johnny Cash & Tommy Cash1975 
Slim Whitman1980 #69 country

"Tho' I Tried I Can't Forget You"

(written with Oakley Haldeman)

Wesley Tuttle1946 #4 country


(written with Fred Rose)

Gene Autry1944 #20 pop

"You Only Want Me When You're Lonely"

(written with Steve Nelson)

Gene Autry1946 #7 country

"You're the Only Star in My Blue Heaven"

Gene Autry1935 
Roy Acuff1936 
Jerry Lee Lewis1956 
Mike Campbell1977 #84 country

Gene Autry

Induction Year: 1970