Richard William Curless (March 17, 1932 – May 25, 1995) was an American country-music singer, a pioneer of the trucking music genre, commonly known as the "Baron of Country Music." He was easily distinguished because of the patch he usually wore over his right eye.
Curless was born in Fort Fairfield, Maine, in 1932, and moved with his family to Massachusetts at the age of eight. In 1948, Curless bagan his music career in Ware, Massachusetts, where he hosted a radio show and toured with a local band called the "Trail Blazers." He married his wife, Pauline, in 1951, and only six months after the wedding, he was drafted into the army. He served in the Korean War from 1952 to 1954 first as a truck driver and later as a radio host with the stage name "Rice Paddy Ranger."
He returned home to Maine in 1954 and continued performing on radio shows, but he spent much of the following year, 1955, in the privacy of his home due to a chronic illness. In 1956, Curless returned to the public spotlight and appeared on the CBS television show Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts. He spent much of the late 1950s performing in clubs i...