Multi-Network Week-long Celebration of the Life and Music of Kenny Rogers Begins Sunday, April 5
“ACM Presents: Our Country” on CBS Honors Kenny Rogers on Sunday, April 5 @ 8 p.m. ET
AXS TV Salutes Rogers with a Pair of Classic Concerts Including the Emmy®-Winning 1989 Special ‘Kenny, Dolly And Willie: Something Inside So Strong’ & the 1985 Special ‘Kenny And Dolly: Real Love’ on Monday, April 6 at 8 p.m. ET
“CMT GIANTS Kenny Rogers: A Benefit For MusiCares” featuring Dolly Parton, Gavin DeGraw, Jason Isbell & Amanda Shires, Jennifer Nettles, Lady Antebellum, Lionel Richie, Michael McDonald, Rascal Flatts, Randy Houser, Vince Gill and more to air Wednesday, April 8 at 8 p.m. ET
A&E’s “Biography: Kenny Rogers” follows Rogers’ journey to country singer, actor, and pop-culture icon featuring Dolly Parton, Lionel Richie, Chris Stapleton, Reba McEntire, Little Big Town, Lady Antebellum, Idina Menzel, Jamey Johnson and more on Monday, April 13 @ 9 p.m. ET All Efforts Supporting ‘Kenny Cares Benefiting MusiCares’ COVID-19 Artist Relief Fund
Text KENNYCARES to 41444 or visit musicares.org/kennycares to donate
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Kenny Rogers’ family, friends and fans around the world mourned the passing of American Music icon last month. To celebrate his life’s work, A&E, AXS TV, CBS and CMT have stacked programming beginning April 5 honoring his memory and rich contributions to American music.
“In his final days, surrounded by family, Kenny felt so much love and peace. It’s so special for our family to see that love continue with this posthumous celebration of his life,” shares Wanda Rogers. “These past few months have taught us that life is so precious, and it’s more important now than ever to take a few moments to pause and reflect on how truly blessed we all are and have been. We hope that by sharing his story and music, and some stories about him, we can honor his legacy and help give back to an organization near and dear to his heart, MusiCares.”
“The resilience and strength of the country music community is heartwarming,” said Debbie Carroll, Vice President, Health and Human Services MusiCares. “Our deepest gratitude to the Rogers Family for designating MusiCares as the beneficiary of these efforts. Their support will help the thousands of music professionals in need of assistance with rent, utilities, food and other basic necessities. I’m proud to call Nashville home and I’m so fortunate to be a member of this community.”
Beginning Sunday, April 5 during “ACM Presents: Our Country” on CBS, Luke Bryan, Brad Paisley and Darius Rucker pay tribute to the 10x ACM Award® winner (beginning at 8 p.m. ET, two-hour special).
On Monday, April 6, AXS TV salutes Rogers with a pair of classic concerts including the Emmy®-Winning 1989 special “Kenny, Dolly And Willie: Something Inside So Strong” and the 1985 special: Kenny And Dolly: Real Love” beginning at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.
Then, Wednesday, April 8 at 8 p.m. ET, CMT Presents a new 1-hour special, “CMT GIANTS Kenny Rogers: A Benefit For MusiCares,” featuring Dolly Parton, Gavin DeGraw, Jason Isbell & Amanda Shires, Jennifer Nettles, Lady Antebellum, Lionel Richie, Michael McDonald, Rascal Flatts, Randy Houser, Vince Gill and more, all filmed directly from their homes and blended alongside rare archival photos, interviews and performances, with clips and commentary from Rogers. The special will encore on MTV Live at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT on April 10 and on CMT at 12:00 p.m. ET/PT on April 11.
On Monday, April 13 @ 9 p.m. ET the week-long celebration culminates with A&E’s premiere of “Biography: Kenny Rogers” which chronicles Rogers’ life from his childhood, through the rise and fall of The First Edition, the iconic release of “The Gambler,” and to the height of his career as a successful solo artist, actor and pop-culture icon. Utilizing live performances and behind-the-scenes moments from Rogers’ 2017 star-studded farewell concert, All In For The Gambler, in Nashville, this “Biography” special pays tribute to a true country music legend. The two-hour documentary also features exclusive photos, a never-before-seen interview and acoustic performance by Rogers himself as well as intimate interviews with family and fellow luminaries including Dolly Parton, Lionel Richie, Chris Stapleton, Reba McEntire, Little Big Town, Lady Antebellum, Jamey Johnson and more. You can view the promo here: https://youtu.be/omecKHIo1WU
“Biography: Kenny Rogers” is produced by Blackbird Presents for A&E Network with Keith Wortman, Ken Levitan, Mark Anstendig, and Robert Rauffer serving as executive producers. Elaine Frontain Bryant and Brad Abramson serve as executive producers for A&E Network.
The celebrated ‘Biography’ brand continues to highlight newsworthy personalities and events with compelling and surprising points-of-view, and remains the defining source for true stories from some of the most accomplished non-fiction storytellers of our time. Biography.com is the home to hundreds of profiles of notable cultural figures and influencers.
About Kenny Rogers:
GRAMMY® Award-winning superstar Kenny Rogers enjoyed exceptional success during his storied career of over six decades. He endeared music lovers around the globe with his amazing songs, heartfelt performances, distinctive voice, gift for storytelling, relatability, showmanship and universal appeal.
Born in Houston, Texas, Rogers formed his first band while in high school in 1956—a doo-wop group called the Scholars—and never quit making music. He charted on Cash Box as a solo artist in the late 1950s with the song "That Crazy Feeling" as Kenneth Rogers, which earned him a performance on "American Bandstand." After playing stand-up bass and singing for many years with the jazz group the Bobby Doyle Three (the group released an album on Columbia Records), Rogers joined folk favorite The New Christy Minstrels. In 1967, Rogers formed the First Edition. As the lead singer of the group, Rogers sang on the band's biggest hits, such as "Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)" and "Ruby, Don't Take Your Love To Town." The group, who hosted their own syndicated television series, "Rollin'", stayed together through 1975.
In 1976, Rogers signed a deal in Nashville with United Artists. With the help of producer Larry Butler, Rogers released "Lucille" in early 1977, his first No. 1 hit. The singer would tally many classic hits through the decade, including "Sweet Music Man," "Every Time Two Fools Collide" (recorded with the late Dottie West), "Love Or Something Like It," "The Gambler," and "She Believes In Me." Rogers was named Male Vocalist of the Year by both the CMA and the ACM, being also recognized as Entertainer of the Year by the latter in 1979.
In 1980, Rogers made musical history with his cross-over success of "Lady." The Lionel Richie composition and production netted Rogers a No. 1 hit in the Country, Pop, AC, and R&B fields. The album from which the song was pulled, Kenny Rogers' Greatest Hits, was certified Diamond for sales of over ten million units. In the 1980s, Rogers stayed on top of the charts with hits like "I Don't Need You," "Through The Years," "We've Got Tonight" (with Sheena Easton), "Islands In The Stream" (with Dolly Parton) and "Morning Desire." In 1985, Rogers sang on the GRAMMY®-winning USA For Africa charity single, "We Are The World," joined by an unprecedented number of music legends. He also established a successful career as an actor – playing the lead role of Brady Hawkes in the record-breaking, five-movie The Gambler TV series, starring in the 1982 motion picture "Six Pack" and more – and as a photographer, with several published books of photos to his credit, including "This Is My Country."
Rogers sold over 120 million albums worldwide during his career, making him one of the best-selling male artists of all-time according to the RIAA, with one Diamond album, twenty Platinum albums and eleven Gold. He earned 24 No. 1 hits and miraculously charted a record within each of the last seven decades, while playing to millions all over the world. The first country artist to consistently sell out arenas, his music has always crossed boundaries, finding success on the Country, Top 40, and Adult Contemporary charts, and in a few instances on the R&B and Christian charts. Rogers' 28 Billboard Adult Contemporary Top 10’s ranks fifth-best all-time, and he sent the most country No. 1’s to the top spot on AC (five of his eight AC No. 1’s were also country No. 1’s).
Rogers won awards from every organization imaginable, including multiple GRAMMY® Awards, as well as CMA, ACM, CMT, TNN, Music City News, American Music Awards, and People's Choice Awards. He was the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Entertainment Buyers Association and inducted into the IEBA Hall of Fame. He received the Horatio Alger Award, given to those who have distinguished themselves despite humble beginnings. In 2012, Rogers released his successful memoir, "Luck or Something Like It" and became a New York Times Best-Selling Author. In the fall of 2013, Rogers was bestowed with his biggest honor, being inducted as a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville. Over the past decade, Rogers continued to endear himself to audiences through his timeless music (releasing new albums in 2011, 2013 and 2015 and earning a GRAMMY® nomination in 2014), touring around the world (including performances at such prestigious festivals as the Glastonbury Festival and Bonnaroo) and appearances on television – including a well-received Geico commercial in 2015. For his photography work, Rogers received an Honorary Masters of Photography from the Professional Photographers of America in 2014 and in 2017, he was honored with the inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Photography Hall of Fame and Museum in St. Louis, Missouri.
In the fall of 2015, Kenny Rogers made headlines with the announcement that he would soon embark on a farewell tour – after one of the most successful and iconic careers in the history of show business. The spring of 2016 saw the singer begin that process with his "The Gambler's Last Deal" Final World Tour, saying goodbye to his loyal legion of fans one city and one night at a time in what was a critically-acclaimed night of music and memories. And on March 20, 2020, the world said goodbye to the American music icon.