Hailing from Maryville, Tennessee, Greene got his start in the record business as a vocalist in Ernest Tubb's band, but he hardly had the same almost-on-key "twang" as his boss. In fact, Greene's smooth, pleasant sound contrasted a great deal with Tubb's blue-collar intonation. Nicknamed "the Jolly Green Giant," Greene learned guitar and drums but mined his vocal chords for a solid string of hit records from 1966-1969. Within that period, he scored five #1 hits ("There Goes My Everything", "All The Time", "You Are My Treasure", "Until My Dreams Come True" and Statue Of A Fool").

He also teamed up successfully with Jeannie Seely, who joined his road show and recorded duets with him for several years. Their collaboration yielded a #2 hit ("Wish I Didn't Have To Miss You") in 1969.