Jimmy Fortune Music





     Born March 11, 1955, in Williamsburg, VA to Dabney and Byrd Fortune; I was raised in a loving Christian family surrounded by eight siblings. My family later moved back to Nelson County, Virginia where they were originally from. My family and I often sang in churches and grew up on family harmonies. My Dad played the mandolin and would take me with him when he played square dances. He would let me take an old guitar and frail rhythm until I got blisters on my fingers. At the age of 12 I got my first guitar for Christmas and knew music would play a major role in my life. My close friends and I, Curtis & David Kidd, created our first band, The New Edition, when we were 13. We later added another friend, Bennie Dodd, and changed our name to the Sun Valley Band. We played at school dances and social functions in the small town of Lovingston, VA and the surrounding community.

     During the 1970’s, I played with various bands in the Charlottesville, VA area such as the Hartwell Woody Band, Blue Ice, & Amber to name a few. I explored a variety of musical genres ranging from Country to Pop, Rock and even Bluegrass, and added the Banjo and Mandolin to the list of instruments I enjoy playing. I not only had a full time job, I would play music six nights a week. Music was always in the forefront of my life. One particular November night in 1981, I sat in with some friends who were playing at a local ski resort. Little did I know that Lew DeWitt with the Statler Brothers would be attending. I sang 4 or 5 songs and at the end of the night, Lew came to me and told me how much he enjoyed my singing. This would change my life forever.

     A couple of months later I received a phone call from a friend by the name of Billy James, who played bass for the Statler Brothers. He told me that the Statler Brothers would like to talk to me. I went in to meet with them and was informed that Lew needed surgery and would be on a leave of absence for approximately six months. They were looking for temporary replacement and my name was the first that Lew mentioned as someone that could do the job. I sang a little with them that day but I had laryngitis. I didn’t think I had impressed them much but I knew in my heart I could do the job. They said they would let me know something in a couple of weeks and so I went back to my normal routine. I was satisfied just being selected to audition for the position. After two weeks went by, sure enough I was called at work one day and Harold Reid was on the line. He told me they wanted me to fly to Nashville, they had already auditioned twenty-six people for the job and they wanted to give me the same opportunity. I flew to Nashville to record and to see if the voices blended well together, the rest became history. I became a temporary member of the Statler Brothers in January 1982. In July of the same year when Lew was to return, he felt that he was not up to it health wise. He asked me if I wanted to become a full time member. This opportunity began a new chapter in my life. I was able to grow musically and explore new creative areas. I was a part of one of the greatest groups of all time for 21 years.

During his years with the Statler Brothers Jimmy received many awards to include the following:

Single of the Year – 1984 (Elizabeth)
Country Music Video of the Year – 1985 (Elizabeth)
Single of the Year – 1986 (My Only Love)
County Music Video of the Year – 1986 (My Only Love)
Single of the Year -1987 (Too Much On My Heart)
Single of the Year -1990 (More Than A Name on A Wall)
Songwriter of the year

1985 – Elizabeth,
1986 – My Only Love
1987 – Too Much on My Heart


Jimmy Fortune Fan Club
PO Box 1113
Hendersonville, TN 37077

Booking Information:
Billy James
Phone: (434) 823-1575

Hebrews 13:8 Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

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