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Artist

Jim Croce

ON AIR
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In the music industry, arguably the worst tragedy that can befall an artist is to die in his or her prime, when just beginning to break through to the mainstream and reach people on a national or international level. One such artist was Jim Croce, a songwriter with a knack for both upbeat, catchy singles and empathetic, melancholy ballads. Though Croce only recorded a few studio albums before an untimely plane crash, he continues to be remembered posthumously. Croce appealed to fans as a common man, and it was not a gimmick -- he was a father and husband who went through a series of blue-collar jobs. And whether he used dry wit, gentle emotions, or sorrow, Croce sang with a rare form of honesty and power. Few artists have ever been able to pull off such down-to-earth storytelling as convincingly as he did. James Joseph Croce was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on January 10, 1943. Raised on ragtime and country, Croce played the accordion as a child and would eventually teach himself the guitar. It wasn't until his freshman year of college that he began to take music seriously, forming several bands over the next few years. After graduation, he continued to play various gigs at local bars and parties, working as both a teacher and construction worker to support himself and his wife, Ingrid. In 1969, the Croces and an old friend from college, Tommy West, moved to New York and record an album. When the Jim and Ingrid record failed to sell, they moved to a farm in Lyndell, Pennsylvania, where Jim juggled several jobs, including singing for radio commercials. Eventually he was noticed and signed by the ABC/Dunhill label and released his second album, You Don't Mess Around with Jim, in 1972. The record spawned three hits: "You Don't Mess Around With Jim," "Operator (That's Not the Way It Feels)," and "Time in a Bottle," the latter ultimately shooting all the way to number one on the Billboard charts. Croce quickly followed with Life and Times in early 1973 and gained his first number one hit with "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown." After four years of grueling tour schedules, Croce grew homesick. Wishing to spend more time with Ingrid and his infant son Adrian James, he planned to take a break after the Life and Times tour was completed. Tragically, the tour would never finish; just two months after "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown" topped the charts, Croce's plane crashed in Natchitoches, Louisiana. Croce and the four other passengers (including bandmember Maury Muehleisen) were killed instantly. Croce's career peaked after his death. In December of 1973, the album I Got a Name surfaced, but it was "Time in a Bottle," from 1972's You Don't Mess Around with Jim, that would become his second number one single. Shortly afterwards, "I'll Have to Say I Love You in a Song" reached the Top Ten. Several albums were released posthumously, most notably the greatest hits collection Photographs & Memories, which became a best-seller. Several other compilations were later issued, such as the 1992 release The 50th Anniversary Collection and the 2000 compilation Time in a Bottle: The Definitive Collection. Listening to the songs Croce recorded, one cannot help but wonder how far his extraordinary talents could have taken him if he would have lived longer. Unfortunately, such a question may only be looked at rhetorically, but Jim Croce continues to live on in the impressive catalog of songs he left behind. ~ Barry Weber
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Stations Featuring
Jim Croce

    Oldies Party

    Oldies Party
    6 songs

    Oldies Hits

    Oldies Hits
    6 songs

    Classic Hits

    Classic Hits
    6 songs

    Sailing Away

    Sailing Away
    2 songs

    Super '70s

    6 songs

    Songwriters

    1 song

    Folk

    3 songs

    '70s Country

    1 song

    Love Songs

    1 song

Albums by
Jim Croce

Top Songs by
Jim Croce

  1.   Song
    Popularity
  2.   Operator (That's Not The Way It Feels)
  3.   Time in a Bottle
  4.   I'll Have to Say I Love You in a Song
  5.   I Got A Name
  6.   Bad, Bad Leroy Brown
  7.   You Don't Mess Around With Jim
  8.   Workin' At The Car Wash Blues
  9.   Hey Tomorrow
  10.   Rapid Roy (The Stock Car Boy)
  11.   Box # 10
  12.   Tomorrow's Gonna Be a Brighter Day
  13.   Mama Tried
  14.   It Doesn't Have to Be That Way
  15.   Lover's Cross
  16.   Photographs and Memories
  17.   You Oughta See Pickles Now
  18.   New York's Not My Home
  19.   One Less Set of Footsteps
  20.   These Dreams
  21.   Alabama Rain
  22.   Roller Derby Queen
  23.   A Good Time Man Like Me
  24.   Cotton Mouth River
  25.   Speedball Tucker
  26.   Time In A Bottle
  27.   Introduction To Rapid Roy
  28.   Introduction To Bad, Bad Leroy Brown
  29.   Charley Green, Play That Slide Trombone
  30.   Careful Man
  31.   Things 'Bout Goin' My Way
  32.   Nobody Loves a Fat Girl
  33.   Salon and Saloon
  34.   Ball Of Kerrymuir
  35.   Six Days on the Road
  36.   The Wall
  37.   More Than That Tomorrow
  38.   Five Short Minutes
  39.   Next Time, This Time
  40.   A Long Time Ago
  41.   Walkin' Back to Georgia
  42.   Woke Up This Morning
  43.   Seek and You Shall Find
  44.   La Bamba
  45.   Seems Like Such a Long Time Ago
  46.   Shopping for Clothes
  47.   Chain Gang Medley
  48.   Introduction To Roller Derby Queen
  49.   I Wish I Could Shimmy Like My Sister Kate
  50.   I Got Mine
  51.   Mom and Dad's Waltz
  52.   Country Girl
  53.   King's Song
  54.   The Migrant Worker
  55.   (And) I Remember Her
  56.   The Hard Way Every Time
  57.   Top Hat Bar and Grill
  58.   A Good Time Man Like Me Ain't Got No Business (Singin' the Blues)
  59.   Hard Time Losin' Man
  60.   Stone Walls
  61.   Maybe Tomorrow
  62.   Thursday
  63.   Dreamin' Again
  64.   Age
  65.   The Way We Used To
  66.   Washington At Valley Forge
  67.   San Francisco Bay Blues
  68.   Bar Story Intro
  69.   Tractor Trailer Story Intro
  70.   Introduction To Workin' At the Car Was Blues
  71.   Sadie Green (The Vamp of New Orleans)
  72.   Who Will Buy the Wine
  73.   If the Back Door Could Talk
  74.   In the Jailhouse Now
  75.   Living with the Blues
  76.   Railroad Song by Ingrid Croce
  77.   Child of Midnight
  78.   Cigareets, Whuskey and Wild, Wild Women
  79.   The Way We Used to Be
  80.   Which Way Are You Goin'?
  81.   Ol' Man River
  82.   Mississippi Lady
  83.   Time in a Bottle
  84.   Introduction To Speedball Tucker
  85.   Recently
  86.   Railroads and Riverboats by Ingrid Croce
  87.   Cigarettes, Whiskey & Wild, Wild Women
  88.   Trucker Dialogue