Jim McCoy remembers Patsy Cline on 50th anniversary of her death
by Jazz Clark
Country music legend Patsy Cline lost her life in a plane crash on March 5, 1963, but Jim McCoy has kept her memory alive for 50 years.
In the 49 years since the first anniversary of Cline’s death, McCoy, owner of the Troubadour, has always found a way to remember the singer’s legacy. If Cline were alive today, she would be 80.
From March 1 to March 3, people can gather at The Troubadour, near Berkeley Springs, to remember Cline with karaoke, music performances and socializing with other fans.
DJ Locomotion Express will entertain on Friday night, March 1, with special guest Tracie Dillon, and
there will be live music on Saturday night, as well. All singers and musicians are welcomed on Sunday for an open mic session.
A teenaged Jim McCoy introduced young Cline to the radio when McCoy’s band had a live Saturday morning show in the mid-1940s. Later, McCoy was a disc jockey in Winchester where Cline spent her early years.
“We stayed real close friends up to the end,” McCoy said. “When money was tight, she would come and ask me for a gig. We would perform at drive-ins with a band.”
McCoy was a pallbearer at the star’s funeral and remains close friends with Cline’s husband, Charlie Dick.
McCoy’ is often mentioned in plays, books and CD booklets about Cline’s life.
“I miss her personality and her unforgettable voice. It’s good to see that even after 50 years being dead, Patsy is still big,” McCoy said.
Cline is also celebrated at The Troubadour’s annual party on Sunday of Labor Day weekend. That big event also remembers those dear to McCoy, such as Ernest Tubb and steel guitar player Johnny Triplett.
Great American Country television network recently named The Troubadour as the top honky tonk in West Virginia.
Some 50 honky tonks in 50 states were found, with The Troubadour on Highland Ridge taking the top spot in the state.
Operating since 1985, McCoy originally opened the place so his friends and young performers had a place to jam.
“It’s great to be noticed. I didn’t think anything about it until after we had already been named,” McCoy said of the honky tonk award.
Because West Virginia is listed last alphabetically on the honorees’ list, it took him a while to find it.
The TV network found the pool room, which doubles as McCoy’s personal Country Music Hall of Fame, as notable in the place’s charm. McCoy’s signature barbecue outside, which is fashioned into the shape of a six-shooter, also intrigued the network.