Link: Daniel and Mary video
Also, Jim Reeves was such a fan of Roy's that when one of his songs would come on the car radio, he would pull over to the side of the road and listen.
As for Daniel O'Donnell and Mary Duff's version, it could be a hit today! Their voices blend so well.
As I previously mentioned, Daniel did a 90-minute tribute to Jim Reeves special for U.S. "public television" that was viewed by 60 MILLION people nationwide, around the 10th anniversary of Jim's passing in 2004. (Despite being from Ireland, Mr. O'Donnell is a popular artist on American public television, has raised millions of dollars for them, and was just on the air a couple of weeks ago).
Daniel COULD have sung his own songs, or done a tribute to any other artist. But he is a Reeves fan from way back. So he had beautiful charts written (at great expense, I might add), and did his tribute to Jim from the stage of one of the top theaters in Branson, Missouri. He used a huge orchestra, including strings. I think Jim himself would have loved it.
It was this special that inspired me to start doing overdubs to bring Jim's own recordings up to date. And when I told Daniel that a few months ago, he reacted with a big smile.
Daniel's popularity is unassailable, contrary to the rantings of Peter Atkinson of the UK, who posted vulgar smears on both Daniel and Mary in his Amazon carpet bombing campaign, just because they are helping promote one of my CD projects.
Atkinson made a major blunder this time, because so many people around the world follow Daniel's career and know him to be almost priest-like in his character.
That's what drives a few of his imbalanced critics wild. Daniel succeeded against all odds. He started out life in a remote rural area of Ireland -- just he and two friends who co-managed him. Plus an accordion player -- all of whom are still with him after all these years. There was one point when their van got repossessed, as did all their band instruments because he fell behind in his payments. He even lost his band and had to rely on pick-up bands at venues he played, one of which Daniel said only knew ONE of his songs. "It was a LONG night that night!" he quipped. But he has now played the biggest venues in the world.
When his wife, Marjella, came down with breast cancer, she appeared on TV in Ireland to give encouragement to other cancer victims, and had her head shaved on live TV in a display of courage that I'm sure touched the hearts of all those who viewed this. Daniel and his wife have continued to raise money for cancer research.
This past summer, when Daniel and I met (and he VOLUNTEERED to help me promote my CDs in any way he could, ultimately taping TV commercials promoting "The Great Jim Reeves" 8 CD set I produced), when I walked in the room he was down on his knees talking to an elderly woman in a wheel chair who had come to see him on her 100th birthday. The only other person present was the woman's son. There were no reporters or others around. Daniel was so kind to this woman, (whom he had never met before), and must have asked her 20 questions about her life, her family, etc. He was sincerely interested and was so tender toward this frail little old lady, my daughter Sara (who was with me) and I got a lump in our throats.
THAT is the true measure of the man, and my UK partner, Steve Brink of H&H Music Ltd. and I are tremendously PROUD to have Daniel and Mary promoting our Reeves CDs. We consider it an honor.
To listen to audio samples (and see Daniel and Mary) click the link below...
Link: Daniel and Mary video
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