Gypsy, Joe And Me

Album: My Blue Ridge Mountain Boy (1969)
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Songfacts®:

  • Similar to Dolly Parton's earlier tune "The Bridge," which tells the tale of a suicidal pregnant girl, this melodramatic country ballad is about a young woman who jumps off a bridge after losing her boyfriend and dog. The couple and their canine companion were penniless drifters who lived off the land and never put down roots, but their free-spirited lifestyle was ultimately responsible for their demise. Gypsy, the dog, was hit by a car during a hitchhiking adventure and Joe, the boyfriend, succumbed to pneumonia after catching a chill on a cold winter's night - leaving the girl distraught and alone.
  • For someone who has such a bubbly personality, Dolly sure likes to delve into misery. "I've killed a lot of puppies and kids and ladies in my songs," she admitted in her 2020 book, Songteller. "I've killed myself a few times. I don't want to do it in real life, but I can do it in a song. You're safe doing it that way. I think sometimes I ought to get sued for writing such pitiful songs. Like I say, I write a lot of sad songs, and some of them are just plum pitiful."
  • This appears on her fourth solo album, My Blue Ridge Mountain Boy, which peaked at #6 on the Country Albums chart.
  • Although this wasn't released as a single, Dolly was fond of the song and included it on her 1970 compilation, The Best Of Dolly Parton.
  • Dolly released two other albums in 1969: In The Good Old Days (When Times Were Bad) and Always, Always (with Porter Wagoner). At this point, her greatest commercial success came from her duets with Wagoner, which consistently made the Top 10 on the Country chart. That year, "Yours Love" and "Just Someone I Used To Know" were added to their tally of hits.

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