Ray Stevens started his music career with a regional hit record on the subsidiary of a major record label while he was still in High School in Atlanta, GA at the age of 17. His first record was not a comedy record however. Although he had grown up listening to and being influenced by classic comedy record makers like The Coasters, Spike Jones and Phil Harris, his first foray into the recording industry was with a teenage ballad about a bracelet that was popular among the youth of his day and was exchanged by kids in a dating relationship. “Silver Bracelet” was a regional hit but not a national hit. Stevens kept pursuing that elusive item with other similar songs until one day he decided to do something different, something off-the-wall. So in 1960 he wrote and recorded a comedy song about a famous radio character, “Sgt. Preston of the Yukon” and it was an instant Hit.