D. Ray White: American dancer (1927-) | Biography
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D. Ray White
American dancer

D. Ray White

D. Ray White
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro American dancer
Is Dancer
From United States of America
Field Dancing
Gender male
Birth 17 April 1927, Boone County
Age 96 years
The details (from wikipedia)


Donald Ray White, more commonly known as D. Ray White, (April 17, 1927 – July 2, 1985) was an American mountain dancer and entertainer, and the patriarch of the White family. He has been featured in several American documentary films that detail the White family. His style was a subtle mix of tap and clog dancing that is native to the Appalachian Mountains and Appalachia. D. Ray rose to regional stardom before his murder in 1985 and became known as one of the greatest mountain dancers of his time. His son, Jesco White, known as "The Dancing Outlaw," who has also been the subject of several documentaries, has carried on his style and continues to perform.

In media

D. Ray was profiled as a famous mountain dancer on a PBS special titled Talking Feet: Solo Southern Dance - Flatfoot, Buck and Tap, and has been referred to in The Wild and Wonderful Whites of West Virginia, the 1991 PBS Special film The Dancing Outlaw which chronicled son Jesco's abilities as a mountain dancer, the 2009 film It Came from Trafalgar, and the 2009 docudrama White Lightnin' was inspired by both D. Ray and Jesco. Donald and his immediate family are the subject of the Hank Williams III song "D. Ray White," featured on his album Straight to Hell.


Steve Allen Rowe, 30, also of Prenter, located in Boone County, West Virginia, home of the White family, shot D. Ray and sons Jesco and Dorsey White with a 12-gauge shotgun outside D. Ray's home on July 2, 1985, stemming from an argument between White and his sons and Rowe. Jesco and Dorsey were injured, and D. Ray was killed by a shotgun wound to the chest.

The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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