Jody Miller Biography

Myrna Joy Brooks, 29 November 1941, Phoenix, Arizona, USA. Raised in Blanchard, Oklahoma, Miller’s father loved country music and played fiddle, and all her four sisters were singers. She led a folk trio while still at school and, after graduation, moved to California to pursue a singing career, but a severe car accident forced her to return home. She established herself locally after appearing on Tom Paxton’s television show, and gained a reputation as a folk-singer. Actor Dale Robertson introduced her to Capitol Records, and her first album, Wednesday’s Child, was a blend of folk and pop music. Her first US chart success was with ‘He Walks Like A Man’ and then she went to number 12 with the answer to Roger Miller’s ‘King Of The Road’, ‘Queen Of The House’. As a result, she won a Grammy for the Best Female Country Performance. She recorded a dramatic teen anthem about being misunderstood, ‘Home Of The Brave’, which was more significant than its chart placings imply (US 25/UK 49). This, however, was a one-off as she then recorded more conventional country hits, having some success with ‘Long Black Limousine’. In 1968, she left the business to raise a daughter, but returned to work with producer Billy Sherrill in Nashville in 1970. Her first success was with a Tony Hatch song, ‘Look At Mine’. She then scored with country versions of pop hits, ‘He’s So Fine’, ‘Baby I’m Yours’ and ‘Be My Baby’. A duet with Johnny Paycheck, ‘Let’s All Go Down To The River’, also fared well. She made little attempt to change with the times and in the early 80s, she retired to breed quarter horses on a 1, 000-acre ranch in Blanchard, Oklahoma. She returned with 1987’s My Country, an album of patriotic songs that led to Miller being asked to perform at George Bush Snr.’s inaugural ball in 1988. She then formed an unsuccessful duo with her daughter Robin.

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