William Lee Golden
January 12, 1939
1997 Inductee

Brewton native, William Lee Golden made his show business debut at the age of seven playing guitar and singing on a hometown radio station. He is now one of the most recognizable faces in Country Music and has seen the top of the charts in three fields; Gospel, Country, and Pop.

In 1965, Golden joined the gospel group The Oak Ridge Boys, and played an integral role in the group's move into country music. As gospel performers, The Oak Ridge Boys won 15 Dove awards and 3 Grammys. In 1975 the group switched to country music where they were awarded Country Music Association Vocal and Instrumental Group of the Year and Best Country Crossover Group of the Year.

Golden's rich baritone can be heard on over two dozen Oak Ridge Boys albums and was featured on such hits as: "Trying To Love Two Women", "Ozark Mountain Jubilee", and everyone's favorite "Thank God For Kids".

In 1986, William Lee released a solo album, "American Vagabond" which won praises from critics across America. After 22 years with the Oak Ridge Boys, he left the group in 1987.

Touring both as a solo performer and with his sons Rusty and Chris as The Goldens, William Lee remained active in country music. His 1991 video for "Louisiana Red Dirt Highway" topped CMT's chart for that year and remained in the top ten for 13 weeks.

In 1996, Golden rejoined the Oak Ridge Boys.

William Lee Golden is the recipient of the 1997 Alabama Music Hall of Fame Life Work Award for Performing Achievement.