Johnny Mathis receiving gifts from superfan Ann (Credit: Tony Foy)

When Ann Met Johnny

A Radio Clatterbridge volunteer has finally met her idol after following Johnny Mathis for decades.

Super-fan Ann Murray first heard Johnny sing on the radio when she was 10 years old and has charted his career avidly ever since.

Ann, who collects requests for In The Mix, met Johnny at an after-concert supper in Birmingham.

To mark the momentous occasion, she picked three significant songs from his vast repertoire and regaled the programme’s listeners with some fascinating facts:

  • I’ll Close My Eyes was first released in 1965 and shows off his vocal range. He sang it at the concerts earlier this month.
  • Johnny’s Dad Clem introduced him to the music of Nat King Cole who remains a major influence. A medley followed of Nat’s music but done the Mathis way.
  • Brazil shows his ongoing passion for Latin-American music.

Ann told listeners that Johnny Mathis was the first artist ever to produce a Greatest Hits album. It stayed on the American Billboard charts for an amazing 490 weeks, almost nine and a half years!

He has sold over 350 million records with only Elvis and Sinatra ahead. However, in the 58th/59th anniversary year of his extraordinary career, he remains the world’s best selling living recording artist.