Dickey Lee Biography

Richard Lipscombe, 21 September 1941, Memphis, Tennessee, USA. Lee was a country singer and composer whose most recorded composition was ‘She Thinks I Still Care’, made famous by George Jones. At high school in Memphis, he sang rock ‘n’ roll and recorded the Elvis Presley -influenced ‘Dreamy Nights’ and ‘Good Lovin’’ with the Collegiates for the local Sun label. When producer Jack Clement left Sun to set up his own studio in Beaumont, Texas, Lee went with him. There he concentrated on pop material, releasing an unsuccessful revival of the 1953 hit tune ‘Oh Mein Papa’, before recording his biggest success, the million-selling ‘Patches’ (1961). Produced by Clement, this lachrymose death-ballad was composed by Barry Mann and Larry Kolber. The follow-up, ‘I Saw Linda Yesterday’, was also a hit but Lee’s later teen-ballads made little impact until another song about a deceased girlfriend, ‘Laurie (Strange Things Happening)’, reached the US Top 20 in 1965. By now, however, Lee was based in Nashville and had established himself as a successful country songwriter following Jones’ 1962 hit version of ‘She Thinks I Still Care’. Among the numerous artists who later recorded the song were Elvis Presley, Michael Nesmith and Anne Murray. During the late 60s and 70s Lee himself recorded for RCA and had a country number 1 with ‘Never Ending Song Of Love’ in 1971. In Britain, the song was a Top 10 hit for the New Seekers. Nearly 30 more singles by Lee were US country hits over the next decade. They included ‘Rocky’ (1975), ‘Ashes Of Love’ (1976), ‘9, 999, 999 Tears’ (1976), ‘It’s Not Easy’ (1978) and ‘Lost In Love’ (1980). Among those who successfully recorded Lee’s compositions were Don Williams, Glen Campbell and Brenda Lee. He moved to Mercury Records in 1979.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.