Dottie West Dottie West, born Dorothy Marie Marsh (October 11, 1932 in McMinnville, Tennessee-September 4, 1991 in Nashville, Tennessee) was a United States country music singer.
Dottie West was one of country music's most popular female vocalists for more than three decades. She began her career in local venues in Cleveland, Ohio in the mid 1950s. She and her husband, steel guitarist Bill West, moved to Nashville, Tennessee in 1959 and she began recording and making personal appearances with a number of major stars including Patsy Cline, who became her closest friend. It was not until 1963, however, that West's career took off when she signed to RCA Records. She made the top ten twice in 1964, a duet with Jim Reeves titled "Love is No Excuse" and a solo "Here Comes My Baby Back Again" which won her a Grammy award for Best Female Country Vocal Performance. West would eventually earned 16 Grammy nominations during her career, at one point among the five most nominated women in Grammy history.
West remained with RCA through 1975, chalking up such hits as "Let Me off at the corner" (1965), "Paper Mansions" (1967), "Country Girl" (1968), "Careless Hands" (1969), "If It's All Right with You" (1970), "Country Sunshine" (1973), and "Last Time I Saw Him" (also a pop and R&B hit for Diana Ross) (1974) . "Country Sunshine" became her themesong and was used in a popular Coca-Cola commercial; the song won the 1973 Clio Award as the year's best advertising song.
She moved to the United Artists Records label in 1976 and shot to new levels of stardom beginning in 1978 with a series of duets with Kenny Rogers which earned them five hit singles and two top 10 albums, as well as multiple awards including the Country Music Association's Duet of the Year award. West's solo work during this period was also successful and included the number one records "A Lesson in Leavin'" (1980) and "Are You Happy Baby" (1981). Around this same time, West updated her image, trading in her conservative gingham checked dresses for a "sexier" look that included skintight spandex jumpsuits. At this time she went from being known as "Little Miss Fireball" to "Lady Airbrush" overnight. In 1981, age 48, Dottie West reached the peak of her career with two number ones including the top 15 pop crossover "What are We Doin' in Love", another duet with Rogers. Her daughter Shelly West also became a country music star during this period (her first hit was "Jose Cuervo" about the morning after drinking too much tequilla), but Shelly has not recorded since the mid-1980s .
Dottie West's recording career started a downward spiral with the release of 1982's "Full Circle", produced by her one-time protege Larry Gatlin which was poorly received. Her last record, "We Know Better Now", was released in 1985. Mounting debts forced the singer to file for bankruptcy in 1990 but ever the survivor, West vowed to fight her way back to the top which she might well have accomplished had she not been in a car accident in August 1991 which claimed her life the following week.
West was portrayed by actress Michele Lee in a tv movie titled Big Dreams and Broken Hearts: The Dottie West Story.
West appeared as a guest in The Dukes of Hazzard, Season III, "By-line, Daisy Duke" Episode.
Learn more on Dottie West Dottiewest.net