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Bill Haley

Born: July 6, 1925, Highland Park, Michigan
Died: February 9, 1981 (age 55), Harlingen, Texas

Bill Haley (born William John Clifton Haley) was one of the first American rock and roll musicians. He is credited by many with first popularizing this form of music in the mid-1950s with his group Bill Haley & His Comets and their hit song "Rock Around the Clock".

What do you know about Bill Haley?  Play this Rock and Roll Heaven Trivia Quiz"Check Your Answers" at the end of the quiz.

1. As a child he had a botched operation that gave him a physical defect. What is the physical defect?

  • His left arm
  • Blinded in his left eye
  • His left leg

2. When he first started to perform, what musical style did he follow?

  • Rhythm and Blues
  • Western Swing
  • Appalachian Mountain Folk Music

3. Haley formed a new group called The Saddlemen in either 1949 or 1950 (sources vary as to the exact year). This group would become his new group The Comets. During the Labor Day weekend in 1952, The Saddlemen were renamed Bill Haley with Haley's Comets (inspired by a popular mispronunciation of Halley's Comet). What year was the group renamed?

  • Labor Day weekend in 1952
  • July 4th Weekend in 1952
  • Christmas Holiday in 1951

4. Bill Haley and the Comets began this Rock and Roll career by recording what cover song?

  • "Wild Night Friday"
  • "Rocket 88"
  • "My Mother's Teddy Bear"

5. In 1953, Haley scored his first national success with an original song (co-written by an uncredited Marshall Lytle) called "Crazy Man, Crazy", a phrase Haley said he heard from his teenaged audience. The song was the first rock and roll song to be televised nationally when it was used on the soundtrack for a 1953 television play. Who starred in this TV play.

  • Henry Fonda
  • Ronald Reagan
  • James Dean

6. Haley also recorded another hit which was significant as the first R&B song recorded by a white artist to cross over to the R&B charts. What is the title?

  • "Cross the Light of Time"
  • "Dim, Dim The Lights"
  • "Shake, Rattle, and Roll"

7. What year was Bill Haley inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?

  • 1986
  • 1987
  • 1988

8. The success of "Rock Around the Clock" is attributed to its use in the soundtrack of the film Blackboard Jungle, which was released in March 1955. The song, which was re-released to coincide with the film, rose to the top of the American musical charts that summer and stayed there for eight weeks, the first rock and roll record to do so. Who was the movie's star?

  • Henry Fonda
  • Glen Ford
  • Rex Allen

9. What was the cause of Haley's death?

  • Cancer
  • Brain tumor
  • Airplane accident

10. Where is Bill Haley buried?

  • Cremated, ashes given to family or friend
  • Moore Memorial Gardens Cemetery, Arlington, Texas
  • Oak Grove Memorial Gardens, Irving, Texas

Page 1 of 1 Check Your Answers


Bill Haley Answers

  1. Blinded in his left eye
  2. Western Swing
  3. Labor Day weekend in 1952
  4. Rocket 88
  5. James Dean
  6. Dim, Dim The Lights
  7. 1987
  8. Glen Ford
  9. Brain tumor
  10. Angels on your pillowCremated, Ashes given to family or friend

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