Merle Kilgore

Merle Kilgore had a multi-tiered career in country music as a singer, songwriter, deejay and as the manager of Hank Williams Jr. Born in Chickasha, OK (full name Wyatt Merle Kilgore), and raised in Shreveport, LA, he learned to play guitar at a young age and was working as a disc jockey and musician in his mid-teens. His outgoing personality and musical ability served Kilgore well, and he worked at several stations around the state before joining the Louisiana Hayride as the principal accompanying guitarist. He made the jump to television in 1952 on the Ouachita Valley Jamboree on KFAZ-TV in West Monroe, LA, then debuted on the Grand Ole Opry, and appeared on the Big D Jamboree in Dallas, all in a two-year span from 1952 to 1954, during which period he also completed college. Kilgore was signed to Imperial Records in 1953, and wrote the song "More and More," which was recorded by Web Pierce, Guy Lombardo, and Johnny Duncan, among others, with Pierce's making the number one country single for ten weeks.

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