Guy Hovis has one of the more recognizable faces in America. He has been on national television for more than forty years beginning with the Art Linkletter’s House Party Show on CBS in 1967. He has recorded fifteen albums, has been nominated as artist and producer of the year by the Gospel Music Association, and is a member of the Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fame. Throughout his career Guy has appeared on many celebrity game shows, in numerous commercials and on national telethons for various charities. Hovis is best known, however, for his 40 plus years as a member of the Lawrence Welk Television Show which is still aired weekly on public television stations throughout the country.
Born and raised in Tupelo, Mississippi, Guy Lee Hovis, Jr. is the son of one of the original members of the Mississippi State Highway Patrol and a mother who was a secretary, housewife and the “best cook in the world.” Guy was singing in church at the age of five and, as he grew older, performed in school musical productions and sang at weddings and for local civic clubs.
After graduating from the University of Mississippi with a degree in accounting, Guy went to work for one of the top national accounting firms until a military commitment, made while in R.O.T.C. in college, sent Lt. Hovis off to the Army. He served as an instructor in the Artillery Officer Candidate School at Fort Sill, Oklahoma during the Viet Nam buildup and also went through paratrooper school at Ft. Benning, Georgia. During his last few months in the Army, Guy entered and won a talent show. Consequently, he was chosen to serve as a performer and officer in charge for a six-week tour of the 4th Army bases. On this tour Guy got a full taste of show business and he liked it!
When his two-year army commitment ended, Guy went back to college for a master’s degree and to study for the CPA exam. However, after one semester, he decided he had to give the music business a try, so he headed for Hollywood. A friend told him about The Horn, a nightclub in Santa Monica where aspiring performers could showcase their talent. There Guy met and befriended another singer, David Blaylock, who eventually would become his singing partner. He was discovered at The Horn by the producer of the Art Linkletter House Party Show on CBS and he made a dozen appearances on House Party during 1967. When he was not able to get anything going from his appearances on the Linkletter Show, Guy teamed up with this friend, David to form the team of Guy & David. During the next two years, the duo recorded an album for ABC Records, appeared on television shows and in nightclubs throughout the country, and did a concert tour with Sergio Mendez and Brazil 66.
Guy met another talented singer at The Horn, Texas native Ralna English, who would become his wife. Ralna became a regular on the Lawrence Welk Television Show in 1969, and later that year, when Guy sang a duet with her on the annual Christmas show, Mr. Welk got so much mail that he knew he had something special. Guy was invited to join the Welk musical family and the husband and wife team of Guy & Ralna became the most popular act to appear on The Lawrence Welk Show since the Lennon Sisters.
Although Guy and Ralna continue to perform together, their marriage ended in divorce in 1984. Guy moved to Mississippi in 1990 and became the director of the state offices for his lifelong friend, Senator Trent Lott. Now retired from his job with the U. S. Senate, Guy continues to record, participates in Lawrence Welk Show television specials for PBS, and keeps an active concert schedule, both solo and with Ralna.
In 2005 Guy performed “Let the Eagle Soar”, from his “One Nation Under God” CD, at the Presidential Inauguration Ceremony in Washington, DC. He was also one of the stars of “Mississippi Rising”, a nationwide television special that raised millions of dollars for Hurricane Katrina recovery efforts in Mississippi. Guy has received special recognition for his charitable work with The American Cancer Society, The March of Dimes, and Childhelp USA. He has been voted “Volunteer of the Year” for his work in the Jackson, Mississippi metro community and received acclaim for his work with military veterans and their families during Operations Desert Shield/ Desert Storm, Enduring Freedom, and Iraqi Freedom.
Guy is married to Sarah “Sis” Lundy, and they live in the Jackson, Mississippi area. His favorite pastimes are playing golf, fishing, and gardening. Guy & Sis have three children and four grandchildren.