An old demo album cover of Tammy Wynette’s songs given to me on the occasion of my first visit to her beach house in Jupiter Florida personally inscribed and referring to a gift of my artwork to her from Burt Reynolds. Every time I delivered a commissioned piece to her she would sign one of these covers with generous comments.
One of my favorite pictures of Tammy Wynette photographed at Jupiter Beach, Florida This is one of many never before seen photos that I took for a commissioned piece using her hands. You will see how I used it in a future post.
Of course Buddy called soon after I talked to Tammy anxious to get my reaction. I was thrilled at the thought of meeting my favorite country singer not to mention the prospect of a commissioned piece of artwork. But by then I had figured out that he gave her They Walked Together to bring Tammy and I together. So I had just a little twinge of disappointment left.
Arriving at her ” beach house” on Jupiter Island I was quite impressed; accustomed as I was to these structures being little more than small dressings rooms convenient to the water. This was in my eyes a beach mansion! She met me at the door with a big smile and an even bigger hug. What a beautiful woman! She didn’t know me from Jack in the Box but was so welcoming and real that I instantly felt a connection and was not at all intimated by her celebrity status.
After introducing her four beautiful girls and walking through the lower level of the house she led me upstairs to her bedroom. She pulled out a guitar and sat down on the bed motioning for me to do the same. “what’s your favorite song?”she asked. Then she sang it to me right there and I was completely mesmerized and thrilled! This world-famous ” First Lady of Country Music” giving me a personal concert. I was transfixed and speechless. ” So you can imitate me?” she asked. I could only nod yes. She picked the song and I have to say we did pretty well together bursting out laughing at the end and clapping like a couple of teenagers. It reminded me of when my sister and I would sing in the kitchen to make the dish washing go faster.
Then she got serious. ” So tell me about your family and your life” she said. Except for an occasional sigh she sat quietly while I sketched the last few years then she wanted to talk about the commission: a portrait drawing of Buddy’s hands that she intended as a reciprocal gift to him. I explained that I would love to do it but only if I had complete artistic licence to compose the piece as I saw him. This was the usual condition of any artwork that I agreed to undertake.With that we settled on a price and went back downstairs. I had not noticed before but she pointed to the huge fireplace where They Walked Together was hanging under an overhead light. Moving closer I could see that the original plack had been removed with a new one in its place. It read ” Georgette and Paw Paw”
That was the only sour note of the visit. On the way home I pondered: How would she feel if I had renamed one of the original songs that she had composed? But the name that I gave it was the one that stuck and it has had a long history over the years. I had many visits with Tammy and the girls to come . We became close friends with much in common including Buddy.
They obviously communicated with lightening speed. The phone rang just as I walked into the house. He was full of praise about her report of the visit and said that she was delighted. Then he wanted to talk about his health problems. He called me a “Good Witch” and asked me what I thought was wrong with him. I said,” If I were a good witch don’t you think that I would help my autistic son; he would be the first one on my list” “Oh no”, he shot back, ” a good witch cannot help themselves they can only help others”. I said, “five years of pre med does not make me a doctor but it does make me very sceptical of fairy tales!”
Please return for the continuing story six right here with me.
I can’t imagine what it must be like to all of a sudden meet a favorite “star”.
It sounds so surreal.
But I have to admit, I was surprised Tammy renamed your painting! That seems shallow.
I’ll be waiting to hear more…
It might have been Buddy that renamed it before he gave it to her. It sounds more like his style than hers. I have never questioned it because it did not matter in the long run.
Thanks Maggie, I will get to the next installment soon and I am glad that you are waiting!
Love it, and waiting to hear the next chapter! 🙂
Love you and thanks for coming here so soon!
Congratulations!Read this please:http://aidaweb101.wordpress.com/2012/08/09/nomination-for-one-lovely-blog-award/
All the best!
Thank you so much Aida; I am truly honored by your nomination and grateful that you enjoy my blog as i do yours!
You are wonderful and kind lady.
Thank you for sharing!I love you blog!
What a compliment! Thank you so much and I love your blog as well! All the best!
Have to be sincere to you, never heard of Tammy Wynette before reading this post and I must admit there are so many areas where I can prove my ignorance.
But I just read her biography on Wikipedia and I’m not sure about something. Is this story somewhere between 1975 -1980 ?
I like that performance of her with George Jones – Golden Ring – when they sing for the first time after two years of being divorced at Pop Goes The Country.
I’m already hooked on this story and can’t wait to see what’s coming next.
This story begins in 1976 and continues for a few years. Glad that you looked it up. She was a wonderful singer and George Jones and she were married and sang together for a long time after parting. I am glad that you are following the story and the artwork. I look forward to your comments and love your blog!
I did not know the extent of your friendship with tammy wynette. The covers of her albums are wonderful art in itself. She and george Jones made beautiful music together. What could possibly be next. Love your sister Marlene
Oh, There is a lot more to come as you will see. Remember these are years that you were in Vero and I was in Jupiter.. I have never told these stories even to you. Love back at you my sister!