Bobby Lord was a singer, songwriter, guitarist and television personality who enjoyed success in the 1960’s with his own long-running syndicated TV show. Produced by Nashville’s WSM, “The Bobby Lord Show” was seen in 40 markets in the U.S. and 34 countries around the world. During this same time, he also did a late afternoon live country show on WSM.
The Sanford (FL) native began his musical career in Tampa as a teenager shortly after graduating from high school hosting “The Home Folks,” a weekly country music half-hour on WSUN-TV. He attended the University of Tampa where he worked on the campus radio station, WTUN-FM, and pulled a short stint with WDAE. An appearance on bandleader Paul Whiteman’s New York TV show after winning an amateur talent contest was his first big break. Then, in 1953, Don Law signed him to Columbia Records where he logged his biggest hit, “Without Your Love,” in 1956. For five years, he was also a regular on Red Foley’s ABC-TV show, “Ozark Jubilee.”
When the TV show left the air in 1960, Bobby moved to Nashville and joined the Grand Ole Opry. In 1961, he began recording for Hickory Records, charting with “Life Can Have Meaning” in 1964. Then, after moving to the Decca label, he scored his biggest hit since 1956, “You And Me Against the World,” in 1970.
By the early 70’s, Bobby had grown tired of the road and, wanting to spend more time with his family, semi-retired from music, returned to Florida, and developed real estate and insurance businesses in Jensen Beach. An avid outdoorsman, he hosted “Country Sportsman” (later called “Celebrity Outdoors”) in the late 80’s for The Nashville Network for several years before leaving the show in 1989.
Ailing for some time from the effects of a stroke and confined to a wheelchair, Bobby passed away February 16, 2008 at a hospital in Stuart at the age of 74.
1955 - 1956 Other Tampa Bay Area Stations (On Air Personality)