Jimmy Clanton (born September 2, 1940, Baton Rouge, Louisiana) is an American singer who became known as the "swamp pop R&B teenage idol". His band recorded a hit song "Just A Dream" which Clanton had written in 1958 for the Ace Records label. It reached number four on the Billboard chart and sold over a million copies. Clanton performed on Dick Clark's American Bandstand and toured with popular artists like Fats Domino, Jerry Lee Lewis and The Platters.
Clanton formed his first band called the Rockets in 1956 while attending Baton Rouge High School.
One of the few white singers to come out of the New Orleans R&B/rock & roll sound, he rode the crest of the popular teen music wave in the 1950s and 1960s. His records charted in the top-40 seven times (all released on Ace); his top-10 records were: the doo-wop song "Just a Dream," (Pop #4, R&B #1 in August 1958, credited to Jimmy Clanton and His Rockets), "Go Jimmy Go" (peaked at number five in late 1959) and "Venus in Blue Jeans," (written by Neil Sedaka; number seven in the fall of 1962). He even continued to release hits after he was drafted into the United States Army in 1961 and served for two years.
Clanton starred in a rock and roll movie produced by Alan Freed called Go Johnny Go, and later starred in Teenage Millionaire.
Clanton became a disc jockey at WHEX in Columbia, Pennsylvania between 1972 & 1976 and performed in an oldies revue also in the 1970s, The Masters of Rock 'n' Roll, with Troy Shondell, Ray Peterson, and Ronnie Dove. He had a religious conversion in the 1980s. In the 1995 Jazz Fest in New Orleans, Clanton performed with Ray Charles, Chuck Berry, and Frankie "Sea Cruise" Ford.
Clanton was inducted into The Museum of the Gulf Coast Hall of Fame, which also has inducted such performers as Tex Ritter, Janis Joplin, ZZ Top and B. J. Thomas.
On April 14, 2007 at a "Legends of Louisiana Celebration & Inductions" concert in Mandeville, Lousiiana, Jimmy Clanton was inducted into The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame.
In December 2007, Jimmy was voted by fans worldwide as a member of the first class of inductees to the Hit Parade Hall of Fame, joining an elite group that also included (alphabetically) Paul Anka, The Beatles, Tony Bennett, Pat Boone, the Beach Boys, Teresa Brewer, Johnny Cash, Ray Charles, Chubby Checker, Nat "King" Cole, Perry Como, Bing Crosby, Bobby Darin, Neil Diamond, Fats Domino, The Four Seasons, Aretha Franklin, Connie Francis, Brenda Lee, Johnny Mathis, Ricky Nelson, Roy Orbison, Patti Page, Elvis Presley, Diana Ross & the Supremes, Neil Sedaka, and Frank Sinatra.
Today, the solid gold performer continues to perform regularly in well-received solo concerts and rock and roll package shows. His fans can get appearance info, CDs and exclusive products through his Website www.JimmyClanton.com .
Clanton and his wife Roxanne are featured regularly on Hardcore Health, an eColumn on www.MyBestYears.com .