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Billie Jo Spears

Billie Jo Spears

(1937 – 2011)

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United States

Billie Jo Spears

Billie Jo Spears
(1937 – 2011)

In memory of

Billie Jo Spears

(1937 – 2011)
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About Billie Jo
This is an online tribute to Billie Jo Spears who was an American country music singer. She reached the top-10 of the Country music charts five times between 1969 and 1977, her biggest hit being "Blanket on the Ground", which, in 1975, became her only number one. She was known for her bluesy voice.
Born Billie Jean Spears, although she had her biggest country hits in the 1970s, she sounded more earthy and more grounded on records than other country music singers during that time. This was because during the height of Billie Jo Spears' career in the 1970s, country's sound moved more pop-sounding. This new type of Country was called countrypolitan, and the popular singers of this genre at the time were Crystal
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About Billie Jo
Gayle, Lynn Anderson, Kenny Rogers, Ronnie Milsap, and Mac Davis. However, Billie Jo Spears, unlike so many of her contemporaries, did not follow the trends of the day, and proved to Nashville that country music can still have a more earthy sound.
Billie Jo Spears was born in Beaumont, Texas, United States. She made her professional debut at age 13 at a country music concert in Houston, Texas. She cut her first single while she was still a teenager called "Too Old For Toys, Too Young For Boys". It was released by the independent record label, Abbot Records, under the name 'Billie Jean Moore'. She also performed on the Louisiana Hayride at 13. After graduating from high school, she sang in nightclubs and sought
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About Billie Jo
a record deal. Billie Jo Spears' early career was orchestrated by the country/rockabilly songwriter, Jack Rhodes. Working out of his makeshift recording studio, Rhodes took it upon himself to provide Billie Jo Spears with material and clout in her early years. Billie Jo Spears moved from Texas to Nashville, Tennessee in 1964. She gained her first recording contract with United Artists Records, and worked with producer Kelso Herston. Her first singles brought her little success. Soon her producer moved over to Capitol Records and Billie Jo Spears followed. She was placed under contract by the label in 1968.
Billie Jo Spears' first hit came in 1969, when her "Mr. Walker It's All Over" reached number 4 on the
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About Billie Jo
Country chart. It also reached the Pop charts at #80. The song told of a secretary who resigned a job where she was discriminated against. She gained four more top 40 country hits during the next two years and then went four years without a hit. During this time at Capitol, Billie Jo Spears recorded some cover versions of popular Country hits, like "Ode to Billie Joe" (originally by Bobbie Gentry) and "Harper Valley PTA" (originally by Jeannie C. Riley). She also recorded novelty songs, like "Get Behind Me Satan and Push". According to the book Country Music: The Rough Guide, her vocals in that song sounded similar to that of Loretta Lynn. However, she decided she would have more success if she switched record
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About Billie Jo
labels.
In 1975, Billie Jo Spears returned to United Artists Records, which was now the home to some of country music's pop-based acts, like Kenny Rogers. She returned to the charts in 1975 with "Blanket on the Ground" The song had been previously turned down by Nashville producers who feared controversy with the chorus line "slipping around", even though the tune was not about adultery. The expected controversy never materialized, and it became her only number-one song. In the United Kingdom the song climbed into the top ten of the UK Singles Chart in August 1975. An album of the same name was released that year, which was also a success.
Billie Jo Spears followed up "Blanket on the Ground" with the
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About Billie Jo
Top Ten "What I've Got In Mind." The track did even better across the Atlantic, turning out to be a top five British hit in September 1976. Billie Jo Spears had successes with "Sing Me An Old Fashioned Song", "Misty Blue" (a song covered by numerous other artists, including Wilma Burgess in the 1960s, who made the song a Top ten Country hit), "'57 Chevrolet," "Love Ain't Gonna Wait For Us," "If You Want Me," and others. 1981's cover version of Tammy Wynette's 1960s hit, "Your Good Girl's Gonna Go Bad," was Billie Jo Spears' last voyage into America's country top 20. Her Greatest Hits album was a Top Ten best seller, and furthered her fan base.
Billie Jo Spears continued releasing albums in the United States
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About Billie Jo
into the 1980s. However, by the late 1980s, the number of recording projects dropped dramatically. By the mid 1980s, her overall success in the United States had tapered off. However, she retained a following in the UK, and remained a popular live performer there. Billie Jo Spears recorded a number of albums for the British market that had limited or even no release in the US. This level of fame in the UK was summed up by the magazine, Country Music People, during the 1990s when their article described Billie Jo Spears as "The Queen Mother of country music."
Billie Jo Spears died on the 14th December 2011. This is an online memorial dedicated to her memory and her music. RIP.
Remembrance Messages
On 16th Dec 2011
Matt van Wersch
wrote:
I learned with sadness of her passing.
She brought such great happiness and good feelings to vast numbers of listeners, such as myself, through her incredibly beautiful music and songs.
Billie Jo was truly one of the VERY best female country music artists ever, as well as a person.
May she rest in well-deserved peace!
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Billie Jo Spears - tribute extract

Billie Jo Spears

This is an online tribute to Billie Jo Spears who was an American country music singer. She reached the top-10 of the Country music charts five times between 1969 and 1977, her biggest hit being "Blanket on the Ground", which, in 1975, became her only number one. She was known for her bluesy voice.
Born Billie Jean Spears, although she had her biggest country hits in the 1970s, she sounded more earthy and more grounded on records than other country music singers during that time. This was because during the height of Billie Jo Spears' career in the 1970s, country's sound moved more pop-sounding. This new type of Country was called countrypolitan, and the popular singers of this genre at the time were Crystal...

Billie Jo Spears is remembered by...
Matt van Wersch
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(You can edit your entry for 15 minutes after submission and can delete your entry at any time)
Rest in peace Billie Jo
I first met Billie Jo at ****
My sincere condolences to all friends and family of Billie Jo
My fondest memory of Billie Jo was ****
Billie Jo used to really enjoy ****
What I will miss the most about Billie Jo is ****
Billie Jo inspired me to ****
Billie Jo changed my life by ****
If I had to sum up what Billie Jo meant to me it would be ****
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