Wanda jackson santo domingo / stupid cupid

In 1943, Tom bought his daughter her first guitar and started teaching her how to play. Wanda’s parents were talented dancers, and would take Wanda to the big bandstand shows to see acts such as Tex Williams, Spade Cooley and Bob Wills. Wanda would stand up front by the bandstand the entire night, mesmerized, while her parents would dance. Seeing these classic performers left a lasting impression on Jackson’s young mind.

It was through this radio exposure that Jackson was discovered by country star Hank Thompson, who invited her to sing with his band, the Brazos Valley Boys. She began performing with them on weekends. In 1954, she recorded the single "You Can't Have My Love," with one of the men from the band, andthe song hit No. 8 on the country charts. Thompson tried to get her signed with Capitol Records, but Ken Nelson, a Capitol producer, said "Girls don't sell records," so Jackson signed with Decca instead, recording a large batch of songs for the label before graduating high school.

Like many other young recording artists of the late 1950s, especially those on major labels, Wanda Jackson was encouraged to straddle musical genres as a hedge against changing trends. She was an accomplished rockabilly singer, but Capitol Records must have worried about how long rockabilly was going to stay popular, so Wanda Jackson has the singer cutting tracks in several other styles -- most frequently country. Her rockabilly fans may have been surprised to hear her first full-length album, which leaned more toward country and also showed off her affinity for straight pop. True, she did cover "Long Tall Sally" and "Money, Honey," and she did a particularly raucous version of "Let's Have a Party" (which surprisingly took off for the pop Top 40 two years after the album's release). But more typical of the sound of the album overall were her versions of Kitty Wells ' "Making Believe" and Don Everly 's "Here We Are Again," traditional country material, and she even tried her hand at Patti Page 's 1954 hit "Let Me Go, Lover!," a pop ballad. Add it all up, and you had one versatile singer, able to sing convincingly anything that was thrown at her. The variety made sense at the time, even if subsequent fans may wish Jackson had rocked out a bit more.

Wanda Jackson Santo Domingo / Stupid CupidWanda Jackson Santo Domingo / Stupid CupidWanda Jackson Santo Domingo / Stupid CupidWanda Jackson Santo Domingo / Stupid Cupid