MIAMI (June 19, 2013)--Country singer Slim Whitman died Wednesday in Florida of heart failure, his son-in-law Roy Beagle said.
Whitman was 90.
Whitman's career began in the late 1940s, and his tenor falsetto and ebony mustache and sideburns became global trademarks and also served as an inspiration for countless jokes thanks to the ubiquitous 1980s and 1990s TV commercials that pitched his records.
He was a serious musical influence on early rock.
In the British Isles, he was known as a pioneer of country music for popularizing the style there and he encouraged a teen Elvis Presley when the young singer made his professional debut.