Our visitor Darrell McMurtrey writes:
B.W. Stevenson b. Louis C. Stevenson, 5 October 1949, Dallas, Texas, USA, d. 28 April 1988, USA. B.W. Stevenson (the initials stood for Buckwheat) is now best remembered for his 1973 Billboard Top 10 single "My Maria". Stevenson performed with many local Texas rock bands as a teenager, before attending college and then joining the US Air Force. Upon being discharged from the Air Force, Stevenson returned to the thriving club scene, particularly in the burgeoning Austin, Texas area. Although he considered himself a blues and rock singer, he was signed to RCA Records as a country artist and released "Shambala", a song that charted but did not fare as well as the version by rockers Three Dog Night. Stevenson and Daniel Moore's "My Maria" became a number 9 pop hit (oddly missing the country charts), and the album of the same title reached number 45, also in 1973. Stevenson continued to record, placing two further singles on the charts in the 70s (the latter, "Down To The Station", for Warner Brothers Records ). He also recorded for MCA Records. Stevenson died following heart surgery in April 1988.
(Thanks, Darrell, for the excellent info!)
Our visitor Monte writes:
The music scene in Dallas at that time was a lot of folk country and people such as Michael Martin Murphy and used to play at all the local coffee shops and do all the amateur hours....in about 1973. About 1973 Chuck wrote "My Maria". He came over to my house played the song for me and asked me what I thought of it. We spent about 4 hours fine tuning the song adding a few words here and there. Chuck's dad had just died and he was going to Denver to pick up his inheritance from his Dad. He'd inherited $60,000. He spent the night at my house, woke up the next morning and he went to the airport and got on the plane to Denver. The next I heard from Chuck was two years later when he got a recording contract and My Maria was a hit on the album. Actually the best song on the album, to me, was one written about two years before "I'm so lonely, I feel like a newborn baby". My Maria was written for a lady that he had fallen in love with and who had broken his heart. He'd met her in Denver about two years earlier and broken up with her and was heading back to Denver to try and hook up with her again. I don't think he did, because he married another woman and had a baby.
(Thanks a million, Monte, EXCELLENT info!!!)
Our visitor R. Loggins writes:
BW or (Buckwheat, as he was known locally) was big in the Dallas area in the early '70s as part of the cosmic country cowboy movement (others included Jerry Jeff Walker, Willie Nelson, Willis Alan Ramsey and Rusty Weir). After some limited commercial success, he disappeared from the local radar. He passed away (apparently destitute) in a
veteran's hospital in Texas about 10 years ago. He was a wonderful writer and had a beautiful voice. "Five O'Clock on a Texas Morning" is still one of my favorite songs. (Very nice
write-up! Thanks a million!)
Our visitor Alan Hebzynski writes:
BW stands for Buck Wheat. He was a Texas singer songwriter with a very distinctive voice. Several albums released, all worth listening. He died in 1988 I believe during a surgery for a heart condition. There is a songwriter tribute award in Austin Texas named after him, awarded to promising new songwriters each year. A sound worth getting acquainted with is Danny O'keefe --same era, still doing records. (Thanks, Alan, for your excellent contribution!)
Our visitor Pat Wong (Pat is a friend of our company since the day we went on line. She was one of the original contributors to our Time Machine section) writes:
<< Louis Charles "B. W." Stevenson (the "B. W." was short for Buck Wheat) was born on October 5, 1949. Stevenson is best known for his 1973 Top Ten hit "My Maria," which was later a hit (in 1996) for the country duo Brooks and Dunn. Although he was never again able to achieve that level of chart success, he nevertheless had three more songs that made it into the Top 100 between 1973 and 1977 - "Shambala" (which was also a Top 10 hit at about the same time for Three Dog Night), "River Of Love" and "Down To The Station." An excellent singer and songwriter, Stevenson's music migrated comfortably between pop, folk and country. To say the least, he was under-appreciated as an artist, which was a real shame because he had some of the finest ballads in his time, songs that would be right at home on the charts if they were released today. If you don't believe me, check out "Texas Morning" and "On My Own," both from his self-titled LP. Sadly, he died at the relatively young age of 38 on April 28, 1988, shortly after undergoing heart surgery. >>
By the way, I don't know if you remember me but I had you transfer some of my recordings to CDR on a few occasions, although it's been about 3 years since I last sent any work your way. I hope business is going well for you. Take care.
(Yes, I most definitely remember you. All is going great over here, thanks. Hope all is well with you. Thanks for this contribution and keep in touch. All the best!)
Our visitor Darla Sanders writes:
he lives in Austin, Texas. at least he did when i lived there (10 years ago) he was even listed in the phone book. this was before brooks and dunn redid my maria. so he may be unlisted now. but he was listed then.
(Super, Darla! Thanks!)
Our visitor Jacques Landry writes:
I have his debut album. The information on it goes as follows: ""When asked to write his biography, B.W. replied, "Well, I've never done anything but hitchhike, write songs and sing." B. W. Stevenson was born Louis Charles Stevenson, III on October 5, 1949 in Dallas, Texas. He spent most of his life on a prairie-like street on south side, not the best nor the worst of Dallas. When Stevenson sings, people listen -- because it seems as if everyone has experienced, something in his songs. They tell of LEAVIN' (Wasted Too Much Time), TRAVELIN' (Highway One), LOVIN' (On My Own), LONELINESS (Lonesome Song), and many happy times, too! B.W. Stevenson, the musician, was born one August night in 1970 when he sat down in Dallas and wrote his first ballad. He was depressed over a broken engagement and hit the road for Colorado. Two weeks later in a rustic bar in Breckenridge, deep in the Rockies, he sang his songs for the first time for people to hear. With the urge to travel, he moved on to Durango where he took his first job as a wrangler at a wilderness ranch. Realizing the limitations of wrangling and longing to return to Texas, B.W. made his path for home. Since then he has written and sung a lot of songs for a lot of people.
(Thanks for the great info, Jacques!)
Our visitor Pruitt Hall writes:
Was searching for the song, 'My Maria' last night and happened upon your website. I was nicely surprised to see that you had a playable version of B.W. Stevenson's original. I think I now know why Brooks and Dunn did a cover of this song; Dunn's voice and Stevenson's are remarkably similar. Very nice that you had this on the Net. You requested background information on B.W. Stevenson, so I thought I'd repay the favor and have copied over a note I found that gives a good background of the man and his music. It follows:
Best remembered for his 1973 smash "My Maria," singer/songwriter B.W. Stevenson (the "B.W." reportedly stood for "Buckwheat" -- his real first name was Louis) was born October 5, 1949 in Dallas, TX. As a teen he played in a variety of local rock bands before attending college, eventually joining the U.S. Air Force; upon returning from duty Stevenson settled in the Austin area, where he became a frequent attraction on the city's thriving club circuit. Upon signing to RCA he was marketed primarily to country listeners, enjoying little success with either his 1972 self-titled debut or its follow-up Lead Free; the title track of 1973's My Maria, however, became a Top Ten pop favorite, although ironically it missed the country charts altogether. Stevenson never again recaptured the single's success, and after 1974's Calabasas he landed at Warner Bros. to issue We Be Sailin' a year later. "Down to the Station," from 1977's Lost Feeling, was his last chart hit, and after 1980's Lifeline his recording career was over. Sadly, Stevenson died on April 28, 1988 shortly after undergoing heart surgery; he was just 38 years old. ~ Jason Ankeny, All Music Guide
(Excellent info! Thanks a bunch, Pruitt!)
Our visitor Shirley Z writes:
What do you want to know about him in high school? His name was Charles Stevenson AKA Chuck. He played at a coffee house in Oak Cliff (in Dallas). He had the voice of an angel.
(Thanks for writing, Shirley. Tell us more...)
Our visitor Hank Ottoline writes:
BW Stevenson was Born in Dallas. Being part of the early 70s progressive country seen in Texas he went on to attract a wider audience with songs like My Maria and Three dog nights Shambala. I believe his final LP was "We Be Sailin" before he died years
back. I being part of the that era in Ft Worth saw him several times in more of his personal shows at small clubs and
theaters. I know he enjoyed those kind of shows. I hope I shed some light on him and not bored anyone with things they already knew.
(Great info! (and not boring) Thanks, Hank, a bunch!)
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