Jimmie Owen was born in Lumberton, Mississippi in 1925. He started
performing when he was just nine years old and in fact, won three
fiddling contests around the Hattiesburg, Mississippi area.
When he was 17 years old, he formed his own band and was working at
a radio station in Gulfport.
Later, the singer in Jim's band left to join the U.S. Army. That meant
that Jimmie had to pick up the chores in that area and did quite well.
He worked with Rev. Jesup, singing humns and religious songs for about
Jimmie, too, later joined the U.S. Army and was part of the USO, entertaining
the troops with his own band. He was discharged in 1946 and returned to Gulfport.
In 1950, he moved up to Chicago to try his luck there. He managed to get
guest appearances on the major stations, including WLS, WGN and WKAN. Around
that time, he had gotten a recording contract (the label was not mentioned)
and had released a self-penned tune, "Waltz Of The Roses" that got a bit
of popularity in the midwest.
Credits & Sources
- Cowboy Songs No. 23; November 1952; American Folk Publications;