Jerry Lee Lewis

Few figures in popular culture could claim the extraordinary list of descriptive phrases that have been attributed to Jerry Lee Lewis - genius, rocker, lunatic, bigamist, survivor - but no matter which label applied ... Read more »
Born: 09/29/1935 in Ferriday, Louisiana, USA

Filmography

Music (41)

The Late Show With David Letterman 2006, 2014 (Tv Show)

Performer

Romulus, My Father 2008 (Movie)

("Wild One (Real Wild Child)") (Song Performer)

Walk the Line 2005 (Movie)

("Lewis Boogie") (Song)

Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights 2004 (Movie)

("High School Confidential") (Song)

Willie Nelson & Friends: Outlaws And Angels 2003 - 2004 (TV Show)

Performer

Rogue Trader 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)

Song Performer

Telling Lies in America 1997 (Movie)

(Song)

Telling Lies in America 1997 (Movie)

("High School Confidential") (Song Performer)

Wild America 1997 (Movie)

("Real Wild Child ('Wild One')") (Song Performer)

Halloween Jam III 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Song Performer

Needful Things 1993 (Movie)

("Great Balls of Fire") (Song Performer)

Memphis 1991 - 1992 (TV Show)

Song

Coupe de Ville 1990 (Movie)

("Could This Be Magic") (Song Performer)

Dick Tracy 1990 (Movie)

("It Was the Whiskey Talkin' (Not Me)") (Song Performer)

Funny About Love 1990 (Movie)

("Great Balls of Fire") (Song Performer)

Great Balls of Fire 1989 (Movie)

("Crazy Arms" "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" "I'm Throwing Rice at the Girl That I Love" "Great Balls of Fire" "Breathless" "High School Confidential" "I'm on Fire" "That Lucky Old Sun" "Real Wild Child (Wild One)") (Song Performer)

Great Balls of Fire 1989 (Movie)

songs("High School Confidential") (Song)

Loverboy 1989 (Movie)

("Great Balls of Fire") (Song Performer)

The Delinquents 1989 (Movie)

("Break Up") (Song Performer)

Stealing Home 1988 (Movie)

("Great Balls of Fire") (Song Performer)

Superman IV: the Quest for Peace 1987 (Movie)

("A Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On") (Song)

Stand By Me 1986 (Movie)

("Great Balls of Fire") (Song Performer)

The Heavenly Kid 1985 (Movie)

("Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On") (Song Performer)

Hareemu Ohgen 1984 (Movie)

("Great Balls of Fire") (Song Performer)

Breathless 1983 (Movie)

("High School Confidential") (Song Performer)

Diner 1982 (Movie)

("Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On") (Song Performer)

The Year of Living Dangerously 1982 (Movie)

("Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On") (Song Performer)

Sapiches 1981 (Movie)

("Whole Lotta Shakin' Going On") (Song Performer)

Middle Age Crazy 1980 (Movie)

("Middle Age Crazy") (Song Performer)

Roadie 1980 (Movie)

("(Hot Damn) I'm a One-Woman Man") (Song Performer)

Riding High 1979 (Movie)

("Great Balls of Fire") (Song Performer)

Grease 1978 (Movie)

("Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On") (Song Performer)

Yotzim Kavua 1978 (Movie)

("High School Confidential" "Be Bop a Lula") (Song Performer)

Yotzim Kavua 1978 (Movie)

("High School Confidential) (Song)

Drive-In 1976 (Movie)

("Your Cheatin' Heart") (Song Performer)

Slumber Party '57 1976 (Movie)

("Great Balls of Fire") (Song Performer)

Sweet Toronto 1971 (Movie)

(Performer)

High School Confidential 1958 (Movie)

title song performer (Song Performer)

High School Confidential 1958 (Movie)

title song (Song)

Mr. Rock 'n' Roll: The Alan Freed Story (TV Show)

Song Performer
Actor (36)

A Capitol Fourth 2007 - 2008 (TV Show)

Actor

The 50th Annual Grammy Awards 2007 - 2008 (TV Show)

Actor

I Walk the Line: A Night for Johnny Cash 2005 - 2006 (TV Show)

Actor

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Ceremony 2005 2004 - 2005 (TV Show)

Actor

Jimmy Swaggart: Fire and Brimstone 2000 - 2001 (TV Show)

Actor

The Statler Bros. Show 1991 - 1999 (TV Show)

Actor

Rock & Roll 1995 - 1996 (TV Show)

Actor

Elvis Aron Presley: The Tribute 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Actor

Elvis: The Tribute 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Actor

Halloween Jam III 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Actor

The History of Rock 'n' Roll 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Actor

The Marty Party 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Actor

The Academy of Country Music's Greatest Hits 1992 - 1993 (TV Show)

Actor

MDA Jerry Lewis Telethon 1990 - 1991 (TV Show)

Actor

Conway Twitty on the Mississippi 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Actor

Ready, Steady, Go! 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Actor

The Best of Cinemax Sessions 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Actor

Coming Home: A Rockin' Reunion 1988 - 1989 (TV Show)

Actor

Shake, Rattle and Roll 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Actor

Showtime's Classic Rock 'n' Roll Reunion 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Actor

Hail! Hail! Rock 'n' Roll! 1987 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Fats Domino & Friends 1985 - 1986 (TV Show)

Actor

Elvis Remembered: Nashville to Hollywood 1979 - 1980 (TV Show)

Actor

The Eddie Rabbitt Special 1979 - 1980 (TV Show)

Actor

American Hot Wax 1978 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The Johnny Cash Christmas Special 1977 - 1978 (TV Show)

Actor

The London Rock and Roll Show 1972 (Movie)

(Actor)

Sweet Toronto 1971 (Movie)

(Actor)

High School Confidential 1958 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)
Other (3)

Great Balls of Fire 1989 (Movie)

pianist (Other)

Great Balls of Fire 1989 (Movie)

(Technical Advisor)

U2 Rattle and Hum 1988 (Movie)

assistance (Assistant)

Biography

Few figures in popular culture could claim the extraordinary list of descriptive phrases that have been attributed to Jerry Lee Lewis - genius, rocker, lunatic, bigamist, survivor - but no matter which label applied, the undeniable fact remained that Jerry Lee Lewis was above all else a pioneer of rock and roll. Lewis was a member of the Sun Records stable, which at one time included Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison and many others who helped to craft rock and roll into an American art form. Lewis' contribution, through incendiary tracks like "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" and "Great Balls of Fire," was to preserve and even enhance the danger, the sex and the joy of the music through his ferocious vocals and piano playing. For a brief, conservative period, no performer could terrify and enthrall an audience at the same time like Lewis. As history often demonstrated, such a volatile personality had to reach a breaking point, and Lewis's came in 1958 with the announcement that he had married his 13-year-old cousin. Decades in the wilderness followed, with occasional returns to his previous brilliance. Surprisingly, Lewis was the last of the major Sun players to survive into the 21st century, where his presence - gnarled but still ornery - served as a reminder that while the excesses of fame had their downside, the potency of great rock and roll was one of the surest tickets to immortality.

Relationships

Dorothy Barton

Wife
Married on Feb. 21,1952 Divorced on Oct. 8, 1953

Judith Brown

Wife
Married March 9, 2012; Brown was the ex-wife of Lewis's second cousin Rusty Brown, whose sister, Myra Gale Brown, was Lewis's third wife

Mickey Gilley Actor

Cousin

Jaren Gunn Pate

Wife
Married on Oct. 7, 1971 until her death June 8, 1982; drowned in a swimming pool in their home

Myra Lewis Set Designer

Wife
Lewis married Myra Gale Brown, his 13-year-old first cousin once removed, on Dec. 12, 1957 Divorced on Dec. 9, 1970

Steven Lewis

Son
Born in 1959; mother, Myra Gale Brown Drowned at age three in 1962

Jerry Lewis

Son
Born in 1987; mother, Kerrie McCarver

Phoebe Lewis

Daughter
Born in 1963; mother, Myra Gale Brown

Ronnie Lewis

Son
Born in 1956; mother, Jane Mitchum

Linda Lewis

Sister
Born in 1947

Frankie Lewis

Brother
Born in 1944

Elmo Lewis

Brother

Elmo Lewis

Father

Mamie Lewis

Mother

Kerrie McCarver

Wife
Married on April 24, 1984 Divorced on June 15, 2005

Jane Mitchum

Wife
Married on Sept. 15, 1953 Divorced in 1957

Shawn Stephens

Wife
Married on June 7, 1983 until her death of an overdose on Aug. 22, 1983

Jimmy Swaggart Actor

Cousin

Milestones

2009

Opened the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 25th Anniversary concert at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY

2006

Released the album Last Man Standing; featured duets with Bruce Springsteen, Little Richard, and Willie Nelson, among others

2005

Received a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award

1989

Portrayed by Dennis Quaid in the biographical drama "Great Balls of Fire!"; Lewis re-recorded his classic hits for the film's soundtrack

1986

Recorded Class of '55 along with Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, and Carl Perkins; album considered a follow-up to "The Million Dollar Quartet" session

1986

Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame; Lewis was an inaugural inductee along with Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, and Ray Charles

1972

Recorded a cover of Big Bopper's "Chantilly Lace," which went to No. 1 on the Hot Country SIngles chart and landed in the top 50 on the U.S. pop charts

1968

Turned to the country music genre and released the hit "To Make Love Sweeter for You"

1964

Released the live albums Live at the Star Club, Hamburg and The Greatest Live Show on Earth

1961

Returned to the charts with a cover of Ray Charles' "What'd I Say"

1958

Performed the title song to the crime drama "High School Confidential"; appeared in film

1957

Took a career misstep after secretly marrying Myra Gale Brown, his 13-year-old first cousin once removed who was ten years his junior; scandal broke the following year

1957

Recorded his first hit, a cover of "Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On"

1957

Made his "American Bandstand" (ABC) debut

1957

Released breakthrough single "Great Balls of Fire"

1956

Backed Carl Perkins on a run of recordings that were visited by labelmates Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley; producer Sam Phillips kept the tape rolling on the impromptu jam session, later dubbed "The Million Dollar Quartet"

1956

Recorded four demos for Sun Studios, including "Crazy Arms" and "End of the Road"

1949

Made his performance debut at a Ford dealership in Ferriday, LA

Learned to play the piano at the age of nine

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