Two-time Grammy Award nominee Merrill Osmond will be making a stop in the Fox Cities this month as part of his 2009 tour.Merrill Osmond, the middle brother and unique lead voice of the famous Osmond family, will have five shows July 22-25 at The Comedy Quarter in the Town of Menasha.
Merrill has already spent more than 50 years in show business, beginning in 1958 with his brothers Alan, Wayne and Jay singing barbershop music in their hometown of Ogden, Utah. The brothers, and later their younger siblings Donny, Marie and Jimmy, enjoyed success as an entertainment group on The Andy Williams Show during the 1960s.
In the early 1970s, the Osmonds shifted their musical styles toward pop music and rock and roll. In 1971, the siblings topped the Billboard pop chart with their hit “One Bad Apple.” The family, with Merrill playing bass guitar and singing lead vocals, enjoyed a great deal of success throughout the 1970s.
In total, Merrill and his brothers wrote music and lyrics for five number one hit records. Merrill also shares production credit for many of the Osmond’s 27 gold records. The group produced 47 gold and platinum records, and holds the record for earning 11 gold and platinum albums in one year. All told, the group sold more than 100 million copies of their albums worldwide.
In 1975, The Osmond Brothers won the “People’s Choice Award” as America’s favorite musical group. In 2003 the Osmond Family was honored for its achievements with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Many of the Osmond siblings enjoyed successful solo careers, most notably were Donny and Marie, whose show was produced by Merrill from 1976 to 1979.
In 1982 the United States Jaycees named Merrill one of the 10 most outstanding men of America. The Osmonds are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and have long been active in promoting their church’s mission through their music and philanthropy.
Merrill and his wife Mary have a deaf son, Justin who grew up without being able to hear his father’s music. Along with help from his family, Merrill’s son started the Osmond Hearing Centers to help people with hearing disabilities.
Merrill also played a role in two presidential inaugurations. He produced “The Making of an Inauguration” for President Ronald Reagan and “The Quincentennial Inaugural Ball” for President George Bush’s Inauguration in 1989.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Merrill joined the Quick Response Relief Team of the Morrell Foundation in the affected areas of the southern United States to provide emergency relief, shelter and support.
His latest venture – The Shiloh Experience: A journey for a peaceful heart – is an opportunity to refresh, renew and restore body mind and spirit, Merrill’s website reads. The program works by “offering time to relax, refocus and rebalance through the unique combination of music art and wellbeing.” The Shiloh Experience is set to begin in late 2009.
In 2007, Merrill, along with more than 100 of his relatives, appeared on Oprah to celebrate their father, who had recently passed away. In 2008, the Osmond siblings celebrated their 50th year of show business by completing a world tour.
Merrill Osmond will perform July 22-25 at the Comedy Quarter. Tickets are on sale now. Doors open at 6 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday. There will be two shows on Friday, with doors opening at 6:30 p.m. and 9:45 p.m. On Saturday night, doors will open at 6:30 p.m.
For ticket information, call 920-722-5653 or visit comedyquarter.com.