Patsy Cline recorded her last song before she died in a plane crash.
Country music singer Patsy Cline won many hearts for her talent and spirit. According to her website, Patsy's career lifted off when she won an Arthur Godfrey Talent program in 1957 with the hit "Walkin' After Midnight." The singer bagged national awards in 1961 and 1962. Her second hit in 1961 was the song "I Fall to Pieces," which gave Cline her first No. 1 single in 1961, reports Taste Of Country. However, tragedy struck the singer when she died in a fatal plane crash outside Camden, Tenn., on March 5, 1963. The aircraft hit rough weather and crashed in Tennessee while she was on her way back to Nashville from a show in Kansas City, Kansas. A few years earlier, she was in a terrible car crash that took place on June 14, 1961, which left her in the hospital for days after suffering injuries including a broken wrist and a dislocated hip. But she was determined to power through and was back onstage at the Grand Ole Opry on crutches. Her website states that in 1973 Patsy was elected posthumously to the Country Music Hall of Fame.
Such a singular voice.— diva ex machina (@diva_ex_machina) March 5, 2018
According to Good Housekeeping, Cline who died along with fellow country artists Hawkshaw Hawkins and Cowboy Copas knew about the harsh weather conditions at that time. However, she supposedly refused fellow country music star Dottie West's offer to return to Nashville via car. "Don't worry about me, Hoss. When it's my time to go, it's my time to go," she said. It is believed that poor flying conditions and the pilot's inexperience were the reasons for the crash. Just a week before the plane crash, she reportedly told singer Ray Walker that she walks a fine line of life and death. "Honey, I've had two bad ones [accidents]. The third one will either be a charm or it'll kill me." Cline was just 30 years old when she died. She was survived by her husband, Charlie Dick, and her two kids, Julie and Randy, who were four and two, respectively then.
Cline's rich voice and singing style made her the first country and western artist to crossover successfully into pop music. According to udiscovermusic.com, Cline's song "I Fall To Pieces" was written by Hank Cochran and Harlan Howard on August 7, 1961. She initially thought the song was too pop for her audience. But when she started recording. she got into the heart of the song and was all in favor of its release. The song appeared on the country chart twice more for Cline years after her sad passing in 1963. Decca Nashville’s Bradley told Billboard, "I always look carefully for a song idea. When I heard about 'I Fall To Pieces'…I bought the lyrics right over the phone, without even hearing the tune. These are the kind of song thoughts for the everyday little guy, for the working people. They capture a little human experience that people can identify with." According to Rolling Stone, the singer crooned "I Fall to Pieces" in her final TV appearance. The fatal 1963 plane crash occurred a week after her Glenn Reeves Show performance.
According to USA Today, iconic music artist Loretta Lynn recalled her friendship with Cline in an emotional memoir, Me and Patsy Kickin’ Up Dust: My Friendship With Patsy Cline. Patsy was the person who taught Lynn so much more than just navigating through Nashville’s male-dominated music business. Lynn wrote: She was from the South, but didn’t talk like it. She coulda sung whatever she wanted to. The book description reads: Loretta Lynn and the late Patsy Cline are legends--country icons and sisters of the heart. For the first time ever Loretta tells their story: a celebration of their music and their relationship up until Patsy's tragic and untimely death. Full of laughter and tears, this eye-opening, heartwarming memoir paints a picture of two stubborn, spirited country gals who'd be damned if they'd let men or convention tell them how to be. Set in the heady streets of the 1960s South, this nostalgia ride shows how Nashville blossomed into the city of music it is today. Tender and fierce, Me & Patsy Kickin' Up Dust is an up-close-and-personal portrait of a friendship that defined a generation and changed country music indelibly--and a meditation on love, loss, and legacy.
Country music singer and songwriter Miranda Lambert left a review saying, "Loretta and Patsy had a bond that set the standard for ladies in music today. They taught us to support each other and to life each other up. I have been in a band with two other women (Pistol Annies) for almost a decade, so I understand that sisterhood more than ever. It's important and inspiring." Country recording artist,Trisha Yearwood added, "I've always admired the friendship that Loretta and Patsy had. Two 'girl singers' breaking ground and changing the times for women in country music together. They got it right. Instead of sizing each other up as competition, they became allies and friends. They paved the way for the rest of us."