Born Peter Jensen, 4 April 1942, New Haven, Connecticut
Kris Jensen was a pop-rock singer / guitarist of Danish-Finnish descent. His musical influence was acquired by listening to his father's extensive collection of Burl Ives, Chet Atkins and other folk and country records, but later on Elvis Presley was also a big influence. His first record was Staying Up Late / Bonnie Baby (Colpix 118) in mid-1959. After graduating from Fort Lauderdale High School (Florida) in June 1960, Jensen signed a contract with Leader Records (a subsidiary of Kapp) in New York, for which he cut his first record (School Bus / Perfect Lover) in August 1960. One more disc was released on Leader, before he moved to Kapp for three single issues. In 1962 he joined Hickory Records in Nashville, for which label he cut his best records, backed by the Nashville A-team. Most of his Hickory recordings came from the pens of Acuff-Rose staff writers : Boudleaux and Felice Bryant, Roy Orbison and Joe Melson, John D. Loudermilk. Not surprising of course, given the fact that Hickory was created as a recording outlet for Acuff-Rose copyrights by Wesley Rose and Roy Acuff. The Loudermilk song "Torture" gave Jensen his only chart entry (# 20), in 1962. My personal favourite is the Orbison-Melson composition "Looking For Love" (Hickory 1243), which was originally recorded by Earl Sinks, who also wrote material for Jensen. I have no idea what happened to Jensen after he left Hickory in 1965.
CD: Torture (Sparkletone SP-CD 99013, issued in 1995). 32 tracks from 1959-1965. Bear Family also issued two LP's of Hickory recordings in 1979.
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