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Country Crooner Ray Price, A Hall Of Famer With North Texas Ties, Has Died At 87

Five stories that have North Texas talking: a country legend has died, Plano to vote whether to allow pooches on the patio, the Dallas Museum of Art acquires another masterpiece, and more:

Singer-bandleader Ray Price, who had more than 100 country hits in his decades-long career, has died. He was 87. He had pancreatic cancer. He died at his ranch outside Mount Pleasant in northeast Texas. The Associated Press reported: “Good friends like Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard got more credit for their contrary ways and trend-setting ideas, but it was Ray Price who set the precedent for change in country music more than a decade earlier.” Price had big hits like “Crazy Arms” and “City Lights.” NPR’s All Things Considered aired this remembrance. A 1996 Country Music Hall of Fame inductee, Price was credited with pioneering a shuffle beat and walking bass line that became standard in Texas dance halls. Price’s death had been prematurely reported by several media outlets over the weekend.

Here’s Price singing “Crazy Arms” in 1956:

And here’s Price singing “City Lights” in 1985:

  • A Keller teenager got probation for killing four people while drinking and driving – and now the Tarrant County district attorney’s office wants legislators to reform the state’s juvenile justice system. Prosecutors aren’t aware of a way to appeal the case, but continue to explore their options, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports. The 16-year-old got 10 years of probation – a sentence that sparked an emotional backlash online and across the country. Prosecutors were hoping the teen would have gotten 20 years behind bars. State Rep. Charlie Geren, R-Fort Worth, told the Star-Telegram that he believes in rehabilitation, but that when a person kills four people, he should spend some time in prison. “I’m working with the district attorney’s office to prevent what happened … from ever happening again,” Geren told the newspaper.

  • A vote of the Plano City Council tonight could open restaurant patios to diners and their dogs. The ordinance would require all dogs to be on a leash. You wouldn’t be able to feed scraps from the table. All doggie mishaps would have to be immediately cleaned up, and the patio would need to be hosed down before each shift. If the measure passes, each restaurant that wants to allow dogs on the patio would have to file for permits to do so. A city official told KERA that most people who’ve offered feedback to the city are in favor of letting dogs hang out with diners.

  • The Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s brass and percussion sections perform in tonight’s “A Big Brassy Christmas.” The concert features the Lay Family Concert Organ. There will be lots of Christmas classics, including “Ding Dong Merrily On High,” “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing,” “Silent Night,” “Joy To The World” and others. It’s at 8 p.m. at the Meyerson Symphony Center.

  • The Dallas Museum of Art announced Monday that it has acquired a solid silver vitrine for its decorative arts and design collection. The vitrine is more than 5 feet tall and was originally owned by the Wittgenstein family of Vienna. The museum says it’s the largest and most lavish example known of silverwork of the Wiener Werkstätte, or the Vienna Workshops, a collaborative group of artists, architects and designers found in 1903. The museum acquired the cabinet earlier this month from a private collection, and it is on view in the European galleries on Level 2. Maxwell L. Anderson, the museum’s director, said in a statement that the vitrine represents a “significant moment in European design, and contributes to the understanding of the evolution of design aesthetics in the 20th century.” (See the vitrine in the slideshow above.)

Eric Aasen is KERA’s managing editor. He helps lead the station's news department, including radio and digital reporters, producers and newscasters. He also oversees, the station’s news website, and manages the station's digital news projects. He reports and writes stories for the website and contributes pieces to KERA radio. He's discussed breaking news live on various public radio programs, including The Takeaway, Here & Now and Texas Standard, as well as radio and TV programs in New Zealand and the United Kingdom.