Before he became the so-called “The Killer,” Jerry Lee Lewis was one of those who pioneered rock & roll and rockabilly music. In fact, he has been described as “rock & roll’s first great wild man.”
Despite being popular in such particular genre, his influence spans across other multiple genres, including country music. Hence, in the summer of 2017, a whole bunch of country stars joined together to honor him in a special concert hosted by the online music series Skyville Live.
Country Artists Pay Tribute to “The Killer”
In 2017, some of the greatest country stars of this generation came together to honor the great Jerry Lee Lewis. Toby Keith, Chris Stapleton, and Kris Kristofferson were among the artists who took to the stage some of Lewis’ biggest hits. And, they did not disappoint as they gave an amazing show. However, the one who gave an unforgettable performance was “The King of Country” George Strait. He set the stage on fire as he rendered one of the most iconic hits songs of Lewis’ career, “Great Balls of Fire.”
Released in 1957, “Great Balls of Fire” became one of Lewis’ instant hits. Within its first 10 days of release, the song sold a whopping 1 million copies in the U.S. in total, it has sold over five million copies. As a result, these sales numbers make “Great Balls of Fire” one of the best-selling singles in music history.
Despite the success in the number of sales, the song surprisingly did not perform well on the charts. It even failed to place No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100. However, it still claimed the top spot on the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart.
Watch Jerry Lee Lewis’ perform “Great Balls of Fire” at The Saturday Night Beechnut Show on Feb. 14, 1958:
“The King’s” Performance of “The Killer’s” Hit
Since “Great Balls of Fire” was such a major hit in country music, it made so much sense to have George Strait play it in honor of Jerry Lee Lewis. As ever, Strait fully embraced the character of the song and performed with an unbridled amount of energy.
Moreover, “The King” turned on the charmed and captivated the audience with his dazzling smile. He even started dancing a little bit as he swooned the crowd who seemed to be really enjoying his number.
Check out this incredible performance of “The King” here: