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YouTube Gold: Patsy Cline Sings Crazy

The eternal queen of country music

Photo of Patsy Cline
The late Patsy Cline
Photo by GAB Archive/Redferns

Patsy Cline was a phenomenal talent. She started recording in the mid-1950’s but it took some time for her to find her style - and when she did, immensely bad luck followed.

Walking After Midnight came out in 1957 but Cline didn't manage another big hit until 1961, when she recorded I Fall To Pieces, which was a smash.

After that, she had a very serious auto accident that nearly cost her her life. It was 1961 and seatbelts were not common yet, so she was tossed into the windshield.

After she recovered from that, she recorded the song she is most identified with, Crazy.

Written by a talented but unknown young composer named Willie Nelson, Crazy was the perfect song for Cline’s talent and her ability to project emotion. It’s an absolutely beloved song that is rediscovered by every new generation.

That came out in October of 1961. At first she didn't like the song and refused to do it but ultimately she agreed and the song became legend.

So did Cline, but she had premonitions of her own death and, as it turned out, she wasn’t wrong: her plane went down less than 17 months later. Her pilot was not instrument trained and was disoriented, crashing near Camden, Tennessee. Everyone on board was killed. Cline was just 30.

Nelson, who wrote her greatest song, was seven months younger. He of course became a legend of country music himself and is still performing at the age of 90.