Born: March 28, 1924 in Warren, Texas
Died: July 4, 1996
English teacher-turned-songwriter Arlie Duff “The Singin’ Schoolteacher” showed an interest in music at an early age.
He began singing with his father and sister Lois as The Duff Trio. They performed gospel songs at singing conventions and school shows. He attended Nederland High School and was also athletically talented; he achieved All-State status as a basketball player. After graduation he served for three years in the United States Navy during World War II. Returning from the war, he attended Stephen F. Austin State College in Nacogdoches, Texas earning a Master’s in Education. He taught and coached in Deweyville and Warren Texas.
Released as his fourth single for the Beaumont based Starday label, the song “Y’all Come” (1953) went to the seventh slot on the country music charts and spawned countless renditions by other artists including George Jones, and Loretta Lynn.
The song was also covered by Bing Crosby, Patti Page, and Bobby Vinton. In 1954 Duff was the featured regular performer on KNUZ-TV’s Houston Hometown Jamboree, and “Y’All Come” became its theme song. Later that year, he performed on Louisiana Hayride and joined the cast of Red Foley’s Ozark Jubilee. Duff continued to write hits throughout the fifties including "Another Story" recorded by Ernest Tubb, "It's the Little Things" by Sonny James and "Alligator Came Across,", a minor hit recorded under his own name.