Jan. 5, 1971: Kenny Rogers becomes first to play rock and roll with Houston Symphony

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- "I think it's the smartest thing a city like this can do because it's going to bring a lot of kids in."

Do you recognize the young man who said that in the video above? It's Kenny Rogers 50 years ago, before he was "the gambler."

We've been digging into the ABC13 archives and found this clip from Jan. 5, 1971.

The future superstar was 33 years old when he was interviewed by Channel 13.

At the time, Rogers was the first guest to play rock and roll music with the Houston Symphony. Rogers was born in Houston, the fourth of eight children to Lucille and Edward Rogers.

He sold more than 100 million records worldwide during his lifetime, making him one of the best-selling artists of all time. Rogers died in March of last year at the age of 81.

Kenny Rogers remembered through the years in Houston
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ACM award winning radio personality Rowdy Yates talks about Kenny Rogers, his Houston roots, and how he never forgot where he came from.



Want more great throwback videos from ABC13? You can stream them all in ABC13's The Vault collection on our free apps for Fire TV, Roku, Android TV, and Apple TV. Follow the directions here for how to download the apps.

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