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Monday, August 3, 2009

RIP Billy Lee Riley, Sun Records Artist

Billy Lee Riley, Rockabilly Singer and Sun Records Artist, Dies at 75 - Obituary (Obit) -
Billy Lee Riley, a rambunctious performer who helped develop the Sun Records sound as a studio musician for other headliners, died here on Sunday. He was 75.

The cause was cancer, his wife, Joyce, told The Commercial Appeal in Memphis.

Mr. Riley’s singles included “Red Hot” (with its memorable lyric, “My gal is red hot, your gal ain’t doodly squat”) and “Flyin’ Saucers Rock & Roll,” the song that led him to call his band the Little Green Men for a time.

Mr. Riley was one of the early performers who recorded at the legendary Sun Records in Memphis, but he was overshadowed by his associates, including Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis. Among many songs, Mr. Riley and his band played on the original Sun recording of Lewis’s “Great Balls of Fire.”

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