Patty Loveless‘ 1997 smash hit, ‘You Don’t Seem to Miss Me,’ is a song that landed in her hands on a happy accident. The tune’s writer, Jim Lauderdale, performed the song for Loveless and her husband/producer in the 90s as she geared up to head into the studio to record her ‘Long Stretch of Lonesome’ album. The song later turned into a duet with the legendary George Jones.
“I was out in the desert in California, and I was talking to my friend, Victoria Williams,” Lauderdale tells Taste of Country of how the song idea came about. “In our conversation, something similar to that title came up. I proposed that idea to her that we write that song, but we didn’t get around to it, so I thought I’d do it on my own.”
“It’s a long way off from where I should be goin’ / And every time, I hate to leave your side / But now when I return, there’s somethin’ missin’ / When I’m gone you don’t seem to miss me / Now life’s so fast and everything is changing / And if you’re changing too, then I don’t blame you / I remember how you used to kiss me / But when I’m gone you don’t seem to miss me,” Lauderdale wrote in the song’s opening lines.
“Usually it takes me a while to write songs on my own, but this one came out pretty fast,” says Lauderdale. “It just came out of me real quickly when I was out there walking in the desert.”
“I’m going back, I wonder why / I’m runnin’ fast to get home / I just can’t wait to see your face / But you don’t seem to miss me,” he wrote in the song’s chorus.
“Patty Loveless was having a meeting with songwriters,” Lauderdale recalls. “I was going to present some songs for her. When I got to the meeting, all I had was a CD and lyric sheets to give her. I was in a hurry and was a little unprepared, so I was going to play something off that [CD]. They told me they had those songs already, so I ended up playing ‘You Don’t Seem to Miss Me,’ because it was a song I liked. They called me the next day, and they liked it. I never dreamed that George Jones would be singing one of my songs, and I still get emotional just thinking about it.”
-Taste of Country