Mark Dinning (August 17, 1933 - March 22, 1986) was an American, teen idol, pop music singer.
Dinning was born Max E. Dinning near Drury, Oklahoma but grew up on a farm outside of Nashville, Tennessee. From a musical family, three of his sisters formed The Dinning Sisters singing group that had a Top Ten hit in the late 1940s. Dinning pursued a career in country music and in 1957, record producer Wesley Rose got him a recording contract. His recording efforts met with limited success until 1960, when he recorded a 45rpm single called "Teen Angel" that was written by his sister Jean and her husband Red Surrey. The lyrics told of the death of a teenage love that radio stations in the United Kingdom deemed too morbid to be aired, but it went to No.1 on the Billboard Charts in the United States. Despite complete lack of airplay in the UK, the song reached #37 on the UK Singles Chart. Mark Dinning's voice had a range similar to Roy Orbison's. However, he had an addiction to alcohol that eventually ended his career. His repeated appearance at performances too intoxicated to perform caused promoters to stop booking him and he faded from public view. Although Dinning never duplicated the success of "Teen Angel", he had three minor hit records in the ensuing years. Dinning continued to perform in the music industry until his unexpected death at the age of fifty-two from a heart attack in Jefferson City, Missouri.
Teen angel, teen angel, teen angel, ooh, ooh
That fateful night the car was stalled upon the railroad track
I pulled you out and we were safe, but you went running back
Teen angel, can you hear me?
Teen angel, can you see me?
Are you somewhere up above
And I am still your own true love?
What was it you were looking for that took your life that night?
They said they found my high school ring clutched in your fingers tight
Just sweet sixteen, and now you're gone
They've taken you away.
I'll never kiss your lips again
They buried you today
Teen angel, teen angel, answer me, please