Beyond the Marquee

Johnnie Ray

by Tad Mann



Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 3/9/2006

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 5x8
Page Count : 312
ISBN : 9781425907143

About the Book

An obscure John Alvin Ray, a small town hopeful from Dallas, Oregon became an international singing star in 1952 after changing his name and becoming the bridge between  the  mellow big band singers and today’s  rock and roll  performers.


Johnnie Ray would come full circle and in another of his accomplishments disprove ‘you can’t go home again’.  After a 1989 concert in Salem, Oregon which would be his last public performance, he had faint memories of his meetings with Kings and Queens and heads of states. With reflections of what he had achieved and lost, now a broken man came home again as obscure as when he had left. If there is anything positive about death it would be Johnnie Ray died young at 63 which allowed most of his boyhood classmates a chance to say goodbye at that concert. After 37 years Johnnie had come home to see the only true friends he would ever know. Unfortunately, the Dallas area had grown a lot in that time. New residents had no idea who Johnnie Ray was or cared. Borrowing lyrics from his music Johnnie Ray wanted to know if the folks he used to know still remembered him. Of the millions world wide who knew him, only a few hundred came to remember him.


The world of Johnnie Ray was over .His reign has now diminished to a simple brass headstone that reads John Alvin Ray Jan 10, 1927-Feb 24, 1990. With his death, Johnnie Ray as he was known to millions no longer existed.

As Dallas ages, so does the memory of Johnnie Ray who single handedly changed the world of music. There are talks of memorials and museums. It is doubtful anything will materialize as they don’t commemorate the forgotten.

About the Author

The author has been involved with the entertainment business for over 50 years. He has appeared on stage and entertained around the world as a singer and drummer. He had roles in management and publicity for other entertainers. He worked as a stage lighting director for several world  tours and as a  stage hand for hundreds of other entertainers.  He was involved both professionally and as a friend of 50’s singing sensation Johnnie Ray in some capacity for over 38 years.  He can also add being a news director on radio and being a disc jockey for several years to his resume. He is no stranger to the world of entertainment and after much urging and pleading from Ray fans, has opted to write this novel.

He and friends perform internationally as part of the Johnnie Ray Remembrance Tour, which raises money for hard of hearing people and assisting in the purchase of hearings dogs as a tribute to his deaf friend. A portion of the sales of this book will be directed to deaf causes in the name of his departed friend.  He and a friend also are webmasters of two Johnnie Ray web sites that attract nearly 50 thousand hits per year. This is the author’s first book and is an attempt to bring readers a better understanding of what life ‘Beyond the Marquee’ is really like.