Dottie West had her first Top 40 hit with “Let Me Off in the Corner” around the country charts in 1963. Another year, her hit song “Here Comes My Baby” won the Grammy for The Best Female Country & Western Vocal Performance, the very first woman to receive this prize. She also became an associate of the Grand Ole Opry and continued to build on her early successes, releasing 15 records in the 1960s. Vocalist, songwriter. One of ten kids, West grew up to be a country music star. She spent her early years doing chores on her family’s modest farm. West started performing on the radio as a teen. They married in 1953.
The couple got a record deal in 1959 with Starday Records and went to Nashville two years after. West became buddies with country music star Patsy Cline. She got to know other significant musicians and songwriters, like Willie Nelson. She scored her first Top 40 hit with all the single “Let Me Off in the Corner” around the country charts in 1963. West was the very first woman to receive this award. She became an associate of the Grand Ole Opry in the exact same time – another indication of her increasingly significant part in country music. Just a select number of country music musicians are ever requested to join the weekly radio program and perform on its stage.
West continued to build on her early successes, releasing fifteen records in the 1960s. Among her biggest hits from this era was “Would You Hold It Against Me,” featured about the 1966 album Endure Time. Regularly wearing simple dresses, West remained close to her country girl origins. She became known for her honest-sounding vocals as well as for taking on a variety of heartache in her lyrics. They were nominated again the following year for the Vocal Duet of the Year Award.
The 1970s brought private and professional changes in West’s life. She divorced her husband and wed drummerByronMetcalf – a considerably younger guy. She also came out using a fresh picture, wearing tight clothing and hot make-up. She continued making hits, such as the 1973 smash “Country Sunshine,” which hit the country and pop charts. West and Rogers won the Top Duet of the Year Award in the CMA for 1978 and 1979.
West’s wedding to Metcalf finished in 1981. A couple of years after, she married Al Winters. Her 1984 record, Only Dottie, scored just two minor country hits: “Let Love Come Lookin’ for You” and “We Know Better Now.” While her records were not selling like they used to, West continued to tour and her live performance still attracted crowds.
Sadly, she ran into some private and fiscal issue in 1990. She divorced her third husband that year and filed for bankruptcy soon after. The Internal Revenue Service confiscated her property and put it up for auction. Although she lost her house and properties, West wouldn’t be broken by this fiscal disaster. She expected to create a recovery, intending to create a fresh record and continuing to perform.
West expired on September 4, 1991, from injuries she sustained in an automobile crash. Several days before, West was running late to get a performance and had car trouble. She accepted a ride from a neighbor. In route to the show the neighbor lost control of the vehicle, and it flipped over. Many country music stars, including Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash, attended her funeral to say goodbye to the great performer.