Beverly Mae Wilson was born to Harry Leslie and Viola May (Maloney) Wilson
in Bridgeport, Connecticut. The family moved to southern California when
she was just three years old. A 1958 article in the Bridgeport Telegram seems
to indicate that the her father was a member of the U. S. Marines and
was based for a time at Camp Pendleton, California.
She began her entertainment career in 1951 and became a professional entertainer
In 1958, circumstances allowed her to be back in her hometown of Bridgeport to appear at the local
armory for a Saturday night dance. The trip was part of a promotional tour for her first
record on the Shaston label.
When John Sullivan (Lonzo of Lonzo and Oscar fame) passed away in 1967, it prompted Paul Charon
who was writing a column for Country Music Life magazine to recall when he first met
Lonzo and Oscar. Here's what Paul wrote back then:
"I remember our first meeting in 1959, when I was still an amateur artists
at age 16, on the Cal Worthington TV program in Huntington Beach, California, Lonze and
Oscar, along with Don Gibson were the guest stars. Until then, the only stars I had
met and made close frieds with in Country Music were: Smokey Rogers, Johnny Cash
and the Tennessee Two (Luther and Marshall).
These people were so kind to me, that I couldn't dream the others could be so
friendly. Here I was, with my partner, Beverly Mae Wilson, finding that our agent
hadn't cleared through AFTRA, and we couldn't appear on the show.
It was especially embarrassing, with all our California friends and relatives
watching back home.
The Sullivan Brothers with Don Gibson, giving us courage, saying that these are the breaks
in show business and that they have been through the same discouraging ordeals. Sometimes
that is the striving force that enables a youngster to go on, in the competitive field
of show business and seasoned artists. Thank you to these stars, for sharing
a few valuable moments with the many young struggling artists!!"
On October 28, 1958, she made a guest appearance on Cliffie Stone's show over KXLA. Later,
on November 28, she appeared on Smokey Roger's Western Caravan show that aired over KFMB-TV
and Little Jimmy Dickens was the scheduled guest.
On June 6, 1959, she appeared to be taking a break from doing appearances with Smokey Rogers'
troupe and was to headline at the Melody Inn in Fullerton, California. Then on July 3,
her management company, Robert A. Sherwood Enterprises, had her leaving on
a summer tour of the Pacific Northwest.
In 1960, a magazine article called her the "Teenage Rage". Her manager was Bob Sherwood
of Sherwood Enterprises.
As you might expect, she did appearances in the local venues. One of them was The Westerners
in National City, California. The band that would back her included Henry Maddox (of Maddox
Brothers and Rose fame) and Billy Guitar. The band also backed other singers such
as "Tall Paul" Charon and Smokey Rogers.
In early 1963, she joined forces with Dale Carter and His Country Swing Band to do a live
radio show over KASE radio out of Riverside, California every Saturday afternoon. She
was recording for the Impact label at the time.
For a time Larry Biel of the Bostonia Ballroom in El Cajon, California doing promotional
and publicity work for Beverly.
She was a tax examiner for the IRS for many years until she retired in 1994.
She and her husband moved from Azle, Texas to Harrisonville, Missouri in 2004, where she passed
away in 2010. The couple had two daughters, Roxzanna and Lorrencine. She had three brothers,
Harry, Arthur and Edwin.
Credits & Sources
- The Bridgeport Telegram; Saturday, July 26, 1958; Bridgeport, CT
- The Bridgeport Post; Tuesday, July 29, 1958; Bridgeport, CT
- The Billboard; November 3, 1958; Billboard Magazine; Cincinnati, OH
- The Billboard; May 25, 1959; Billboard Magazine; Cincinnati, OH
- The Billboard; March 9, 1963; Billboard Magazine; Cincinnati, OH
- On The Trail; Vol. 1 No. 7; January / February 1959; Trail Publications, Inc.;
48 West 48th Street; New York, NY
- Country Song Roundup; No. 65; March 1960; American Folk Publications, Inc.;
Charlton Building, Derby, CT
- Cowboy Songs; No. 66; May 1961; American Folk Publications, Inc.; Charlton Building,
- Country Music Life; August 1967; Country Music Life Publications; Orange, CA