Wilma Burgess

Listen: When You’re Not Around / Wilma Burgess

I walked into the house after seeing Bassnectar earlier tonight at Terminal 5, and as much as I was wired beyond nuts from the relentless low, low, low end of the show’s live mix, my mood went unexpectedly gentle. Usually I’ll sleep a great show off, but tonight I just felt like a peaceful nightcap, and switched on the Seeburg, selecting one single blindly. The result couldn’t have been more perfect.

Enter Wilma Burgess. Producer Owen Bradley signed her as the potential successor to Patsy Cline back in ’64. As a result, we got some great singles from the two all through the decade.

Preceding k.d. Lang by a solid twenty years in battling her sexual preferences with a not so tolerant Country music business meant most of her records got very little airplay.

‘When You’re Not Around’ kept in character with her neutral genre lyrical song choices and was not a chart hit. In fact, it was the third of three flops, and almost ended her time with Decca until the fourth single, ‘Baby’ reached #7 in September ’65.

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