Country Music Hall Of Famer Jerry Bradley Dies At Age 83
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Jerry Bradley, The Music Executive Known For His Work With Alabama, Ronnie Milsap, and Country “Outlaws” Dies At Age 83 In Tennessee
The country music industry has lost another icon…Jerry Bradley. Following his death, AP published a detailed report about his extraordinary career.
Bradley started his career in the 1960s while working at his family’s music publishing business. His father, Owen, was a producer.
Bradley worked as an engineer, and had the opportunity to connect with many big names in the music industry. During those early years, he worked with artists such as Loretta Lynn, Gordon Lightfoot, and The Who.
By the 1970s, Bradley was working on his own. He joined RCA Records under Chet Akins. Bradley eventually served as the head of the label’s Nashville branch for ten years, from 1973-1983.
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Jerry Bradley Helped Boost The Careers Of Many Artists Who Are Now Considered Country Music Legends
During that period, Bradley signed Alabama and Ronnie Milsap. Both turned out to be incredibly popular and influential acts for decades that followed. He also helped bolster the careers of other country stars such as Dolly Parton and Charley Pride.
In addition, Bradley is credited for helping market the “outlaws” of country music. The now-famous Wanted! The Outlaws compilation album featuring Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, Jessi Colter and Tompall Glaser was released during his time at RCA.
Wanted! became the first country album to ever be certified Platinum by the RIAA.
Bradley ran the Opryland Music Group following his departure from RCA. He continued to form more connections and offered support to new up-and-coming artists such as Kenny Chesney.
A Hall Of Fame-Worthy Life & Legacy
After a long and successful career, Bradley retired in 2003. His hard work and influence was recognized by the Country Music Hall of Fame when he was inducted into the institution in 2019.
Bradley died on Monday (July 17) at the age of 83 in Mt. Juliet, Tennessee. Hall of Fame CEO Kyle Young released the following statement:
“Jerry Bradley grew up in Nashville’s music business, and then he helped shape it… Thanks to Jerry, country music gained newfound respect and commercial clout.“
Read Young’s full statement in the post below.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to Bradley’s family during this sad time. May he rest in peace.