About Jimmie Dale Gilmore
Raised in the somewhat-fabled West Texas town of Lubbock (home of Buddy Holly, Prairie Dog Town, and “world famous sunsets”), Jimmie Dale Gilmore first responded to the honky-tonk brand of country music his father played as a bar-band guitarist. This was before he heard the rock `n’ roll siren call issued by his West Texas brethren, Buddy Holly and Roy Orbison, the folk and deep Delta blues, Bob Dylan, or The Beatles.
Over three decades ago, along with Butch Hancock and Joe Ely, Gilmore founded The Flatlanders, a local term for folks who live in the kind of landscape the southwest has to spare. More of a song-swap than a commercial endeavor, the band’s sole recording project in 1973—released only in the short-lived 8-track format—was barely distributed. It has since been recognized as a landmark in progressive, alternative country music.
Disillusioned by the poor sales of their first release, the group disbanded, though the friendships continued. But The Flatlanders occasionally reunited for special occasions. Robert Redford had them reconvene for a song on the soundtrack to The Horse Whisperer in 1998. By two years later, the legendary group became a bona fide working band, making two highly acclaimed new albums—Now Again (2002) and Wheels of Fortune (2004).
But following the disbanding of The Flatlanders, Gilmore did not make another record for 16 years. He spent much of the '70s in a Denver ashram, while his songs, especially “Dallas” and “Treat Me Like a Saturday Night,” were establishing his reputation through Joe Ely’s recordings. It wasn’t until 1988 that Gilmore released his first solo album, the Ely-produced Fair & Square, his first attempt to merge his spiritual quest with a recording career.
A second, eponymous album followed a year later, and the next decade saw the full flowering of this late, but glorious, bloomer. Three albums he recorded for Nonesuch/Elektra between 1991 and 1996 elicited global accolades—After Awhile (a highlight of the label’s American Explorer series), Spinning Around the Sun, and Braver Newer World. Rolling Stone named him Country Artist of the Year two years straight, and he received a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Folk Artist.
July 12, 1991
Hailed by the New York Times as “one of Texas’ best-kept secrets,” singer-songwriter Jimmie Dale Gilmore has been active since the 1960s, a peer to Nanci Griffith, Lyle Lovett, and Townes Van Zandt, among others. After Awhile features some of Gilmore’s most beloved songs, like “Treat Me Like a Saturday Night,” on which he “stamps himself as a great American songwriter” (Rolling Stone).