From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Pierino Ronald "Perry" Como (May 18 1912 – May 12 2001) was an American crooner. During a career spanning more than half a century he recorded exclusively for the RCA Victor label after signing with it in 1943. He sold millions of records for RCA and also pioneered a weekly musical variety television show, which set the standards for the genre and proved to be one of the most successful in television history. His combined success on television and popular recordings was not matched by any other artist of the time.
A popular television performer and recording artist, Perry Como produced numerous hit records with record sales so high the label literally stopped counting at Como's behest. His weekly television shows and seasonal specials were broadcast throughout the world and his popularity seemingly had no geographical or language boundaries. He was equally at ease in live performance and in the confines of a recording studio. His appeal spanned generations and he was widely respected for both his professional standards and the conduct in his personal life. In the official RCA Records Billboard Magazine memorial, his life was summed up in these few words: "50 years of music and a life well lived. An example to all."
Well known American composer Ervin Drake said of him, " . . . occasionally someone like Perry comes along and won't 'go with the flow' and still prevails in spite of all the bankrupt others who surround him and importune him to yield to their values. Only occasionally."