Singer of the novelty hit song "Purple People Eater" who was also the star of the Western High Noon and several Western TV programs.
He was a rodeo rider from his childhood days, competing professionally as a teenager.
While playing small parts in popular films and shows, he continued recording his own music and writing hit songs for others.
He was born in Erick, Oklahoma.
His hit song was released around the same time as Steve McQueen's campy horror film, The Blob, leading some to suggest one influencing the other.