Arts & Entertainment

Roy Orbison to receive Walk of Fame star today

Roy Orbison will posthumously receive the 2,400th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame today, honoring a career that saw him become one of the first international rock 'n' roll stars.

Orbison's widow, Barbara, will accept the star at the late-morning ceremony in front of the Capitol Records building. Actor Dan Aykroyd and singer-songwriter T-Bone Burnett, who produced Orbison's 1987 two-record album, In Dreams: The Greatest Hits, are scheduled to speak.

Jeff Beck, Michelle Branch, Chris Isaak, Jeff Lynne, Jason Mraz, Joe Walsh and Dwight Yoakam are among those scheduled to attend the ceremony.

Orbison's star will be next to those honoring John Lennon, a close friend, and George Harrison, a fellow member of the Traveling Wilburys.

Orbison drew fans worldwide with his five-octave range and a songwriting style that connected with teenagers who knew how unrequited love and loneliness felt. Orbison is also credited with bringing rock 'n' roll to Nashville and helping inspire the British Invasion.

Born April 23, 1936, in Vernon, Texas, and raised there and in Fort Worth and Wink, Orbison was given his first guitar at the age of six and began singing on radio shows when he was eight.

In 1956, Orbison led a high school combo, the Teen Kings, in a recording of a song called "Ooby Dooby," written by his classmates at North Texas State University, where he studied geology, which came to the attention of Sam Phillips at Sun Records, who also gave Elvis Presley his first recording contract.

Orbison moved to the Nashville, Tenn.-based Monument label in 1960. Beginning with "Only the Lonely," he would record 19 top 40 hits in a five-year period, including the number one hits, "Oh! Pretty Woman" and "Running Scared."

Orbison was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987 with Bruce Springsteen serving as his presenter.

Orbison died of a heart attack on Dec. 6, 1988, at the age of 52, two days after performing what would turn out to be his last concert.