Mickey Gilley — a mega country star in the ’70s and ’80s — has died … this according to his own Texas community, which officially made the announcement.
The singer and founder of the “world’s biggest honky tonk” died Saturday surrounded by loved ones — sad news that the mayor of Pasadena, TX broke this weekend via the city’s official Facebook page. Jeff Wagner writes, “It was my great honor to know this man most of my life. Mickey was a true musical talent who charted 42 singles in the Top 40 Country Charts over a span of two decades.” The exact circumstances of his death weren’t revealed.
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Wagner went on to give a nod to Gilley for putting Pasadena on the map via the John Travolta flick, “Urban Cowboy,” and added … “We were so honored to have Mickey perform at our State of the City in February, 2020. Our prayers for comfort and peace are with Mickey’s family, his loved ones and his fans.” He attached photos of the event mentioned.
Gilley will probably be best remembered for launching Gilley’s Club — a dance hall that rose to prominence after it was heavily featured in ‘UC’ … and which went on to become a tourist attraction for country fans everywhere.
The guy also had some of his own music in the film, including his rendition of Ben E. King‘s “Stand by Me,” which became a smash hit at the time … peaking at #1 on Billboard’s Country chart, and even climbing other charts as well.
Even before his resurgence in the ’80s, MG had a lot of success in the ’70s from songs like “Room Full of Roses,” “Don’t The Girls All Get Prettier at Closing Time,” “Honky Tonk Memories,” “Here Comes the Hurt Again,” “Bring It on Home to Me,” among others.
He’s won several awards … mostly with the Academy of Country Music, including Single of the Year, Song of the Year, Entertainer of the Year, Top Male Vocalist, and Album of the Year, etc.
Mickey’s survived by his wife, Cindy Loeb Gilley, and his 4 children. He was 86.