that fateful night soon after we received the news. Those of us scheduled to appear collectively decided to make it an impromptu tribute led by Hawkshaw Hawkins. I sang A Mansion On The Hill with Shirley on harmony] <> Jim Reeves … a good personal friend and a delightful touring partner during my solo career. Early on, Jim asked me to record a song he had been given to record; he felt it was too girlie. After listening to it I insisted Jim record it and the rest is history ... the song was Four Walls! Want to hear me sing it … ummm, recently, nearly 60 years later? This is just while playfully jamming with an old friend of ours Lenny … he on bass and me on guitar. Later in this write-up you’ll hear me perform it again as a duet … but just messing around <> Kitty Wells … what a wonderful lady. Kitty was the first female country artist to welcome me to Nashville. That was a time when females were still trying to get a foothold in country music. Miss Kitty treated me like gold <> Jean Shepard … Jean was right there for me every step of the way until I got comfortable. After that, she was a very dear friend. I should note that in 1958 Jean recorded a song I wrote and it did pretty well for her; the song is Secret of Life <> Last but certainly not least, Patsy Cline. Patsy and I were very close friends. We did the stuff that other young girls did such as shopping, catching a movie and so on. Heck, sometimes on tour we would go buy clothes to wear that night on stage. Speaking of touring, we even had fun touring together … at times we would sing each other’s songs much to the delight of the crowd. Patsy’s death hit me hard … to this day I have never sung a Patsy Cline song since after she left us.

>> Way back in the 1950s when I was getting considerable TV exposure I was approached by Hollywood to star in a feature film. Already having a difficult time balancing my desire for privacy and my singing career I knew movie stardom was not for me. I graciously declined and never gave it another thought.

>> 1958 was a good year for me. I was blessed to be named as Billboard’s Most Promising Female Country & Western Artist. The song credited with making it happen was I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry . Also I was blessed to be noted as a top overall female artist as well ... here is an example.

Notable Tidbits [continued]
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The Missing Years
Throughout my life I have kept my private life private and I will continue to do so. I can tell you this, I explored many other avenues; such, as other occupations, artwork and painting plus raised a family. Back on point, you’re here about country music so let’s get back into it.

Though all told I was gone from country music for approximately 48 years, all is not completely lost during the time away. Folks … let’s revisit one significant happening that occurred unexpectedly during my lengthy absence. Note: for me it is important enough to do even though you are likely familiar with the story. I left the business in 1962 and never looked back though admittedly I wasn’t really comfortable with...
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