1. says

    The Ode to Billy Joe is timely considering Dan Savage’s “It Gets Better” Project.

    It’s subtext in the song, what the author said was really about “casual cruelty,” that Bobbie Joe killed himself because he was gay. That was also later the case in the movie they made based on the song.

  2. alguien says

    “ode to billie joe” one of my all time favorite songs. i’ve always been a little obsessed with it from the oddball conversational cadences in the lyrics to the almost surreal quality of the string arrangement that creates a tension that is unlike anything else that’s in a pop/country song.

  3. sean says

    thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you…………since a lil boy i have listened to bobbie. love love her and so glad you have made her presence known to a bigger audience. she is amazing.

  4. Snarky says

    Saw her live in Vegas when I was a kid. She put on a surprisingly awesome show. I stll remember her entrance, opened with “Lucy in the sky with diamonds”, and guess what? she was IN THE SKY, and she was WEARING DIAMONDS!!

    Corny, but she pulled it off, it WAS Vegas, after all.

  5. NYSmike says

    Actually, Bobbie Gentry who wrote the song has always stated that it was about death and how people handle it (just dinner conversation). The man who wrote the sreenplay for the movie said that since Bobbie Gentry said she never came up with a reason why Billie Joe jumped, he made one up, thus the gay storyline.

    Back when the song came out though many thought the girl (the narrator) had a secret relationship with Billie Joe and got pregnant. She had some kind of an abortion or the baby was stillborn and that’s what she and Billie Joe threw off the bridge. He was guilty and jumped. Another rumor was that she talked Billie Joe out of suicide and they were tossing a gun off the bridge. He later wound up jumping while she wasn’t there.

    Since Bobbie Gentry never made it clear this song has taken on many stories. There was even a rumor that the original writing of the song would have had more lyrics (a 7 minute song) that in those days was too long for radio format.

    Who knows?

  6. GaryJ says

    I love Bobbie Gentry, nice voice, stage presence. I didn’t care for the movie they made from her song Ode to Billy Jo.
    But that’s old homophobic fears showing up again.

  7. Lee says

    Now, there’s a name from the past! When I saw the topic, I thought that’s who it was, and Ode to Billie Joe was my second thought. yeah.. I’m old enough to remember the song!

  8. Daniel says

    Can you believe Ode to Billie Joe has over 100 covers by other artists? It’s the gift that keeps on giving. Bobbie Gentry was way ahead of her time. She formed her own production and publishing companies in the 1960’s! She was even one of the original owners of The Phoniex Suns basketball tream. Like Garbo, she took her millions and retreated out of site (gotta love that) She even turned Oprah down for an interview…

Leave A Reply