portrait_kayserJames Kern “Kay” Kyser

James Kern “Kay” Kyser, Big-Band Leader, was creator of the Kollege of Musical Knowledge on NBC radio 1938 – 1949 and NBC TV 1949-50 and recorder of million-record seller “Three Little Fishes”. His movies include That’s Right – You’re Wrong (1939), You’ll Find Out (1940), Playmates (1941), My Favorite Spy (1942), and Swing Fever (1943). During World War II, Mr. Kyser performed over 600 shows for the troops, more than any other performer! He retired at age 44, at the height of his popularity, to devote his life to public service. He worked to bring educational television – Public Television (UNC-TV) to North Carolina and in the 1940’s and 1950’s promoted medical care in North Carolina. Mr. Kyser was born in Rocky Mount on June 18, 1905, and died in Chapel Hill on July 23, 1985.

Inducted into Hall of Fame 2004