October 3

My “Oh Lonesome Me” Moment and Country’s Sad Poet, Don Gibson


It is another night of being pestered by loneliness; I am reprimanding myself for sleeping like a log during the day. Trying to avoid escalating that miserable feeling with teary, melodramatic melodies, I did a quick search of songs for sad people. I just wanted to hear some singer relate to this wretched feeling without him or her sounding sappy. (Yeah, I know that was much of a demand.)

Luckily, I have stumbled into one, and gee, the title was very fitting. So everyone, loan me your ears as you join me in listening to Don Gibson’s Oh Lonesome Me.

Before Elvis Presley made a reputation for rocking and rolling sad song lyrics, there was country’s honky tonk and twangy singing of miseries. First, to pop on top my head was a string of Hanks (Williams Sr, Snow, and Locklin).

Between the two genres, of course, I’d rather hee haw with class than to headbang and shake my sadness.


Now, for the singer-songwriter Mr. Don Gibson, he earned the Sad Poet title for his long list of sad, sad songs. He sounded great on recordings but only had moderate success with them. Other artists did covers of his songs and sales got better with them. Bet, his forte was more on songwriting then.

Over the course of less than a decade of musical and writing career, he enjoyed success with his compositions, “ I Can’t Stop Loving You,” “Blue Blue Day,” “Who Cares,” “Don’t Tell Me Your Troubles,” “Just One Time,” “Sea of Heartbreak,” and “Lonesome Number One.”

Typical of what happens to most artists at the peak of their career, he got trapped in a cycle of alcoholism and drug addiction. Thankfully, that did not last long for he soon sobered up and made a comeback in the early 1970’s. Again, he had hits with “One Day at a Time” and “Bring Back Your Love to Me.”

He then settled with tours and performances at the Grand Ole Opry for the last two decades of his life before his demise in early 2000.


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