Lost Northwest Classics: Bonnie Guitar – “Dark Moon”

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Seattle-born Bonnie Buckingham better known as Bonnie Guitar had a busy, active career and lifestyle during her 95 years & passed away Jan 12 at her final home in Soap Lake.  This week’s Lost Treasure is her best-known single from 1957 on Fabor Records.  The single was picked up & re-released by Dot shortly after.  She was working as a session guitarist at the Fabor label plus a few other small L.A. record companies.  She ended up playing on sessions for many well-known singers, like Jim ReevesDorsey BurnetteNed Miller, and the DeCastro Sisters“Dark Moon” made it to the pop Top 10 & country Top 15 charts nationally.  Without much follow-up success as an artist, she returned to Wash. & formed the Seattle-based label Dolton Records in 1959.The label had some regional success, notably with a new group called the Ventures & their first single “Walk, Don’t Run”. 

Bonnie continued to release a number of albums during the 60’s & recorded sporadically throughout her remaining years.  By 1969, she & her second husband were raising cattle & quarter horses at their ranch in Orting until his passing in 1983.  She once again achieved chart success with the 1980 single “Honey On The Moon”.  Bonnie Guitar retired from the music business in 1996 but occasionally performed in Soap Lake with her band on weekends right up until her passing.

Thanks to Ron DeHart for his suggestion & contribution to this week’s “Lost Treasure”

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Mike Cherry

Author: Mike Cherry

retired broadcaster: on-air, MD, PD, asst PD, Prod Mgr, IT, station technician/engineer, pioneer Internet webcaster, station installation/maintenance; 12 years in commercial radio, 17 years volunteer in campus/community radio in B.C., Alberta & Wash. Amateur radio operator & "DXer" specializing in AM night-time DX, short-wave DX/listening & remote SDR DXing/listening

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