Born in Moose Jaw, SK in 1946, Dixie Lee Stone moved to Calgary as a child with her family. She was playing the coffee houses and the like when she met future husband Bruce Innes. Joining his band New Country Singers, they soon moved to LA and changed their name to Original Caste. Releasing two singles that didn’t fair particularly well for Dot Records, they signed with TA Records, distributed by Bell. There they hit paydirt with the album ONE TIN SOLDIER, which featured the hits “Mr. Monday” the title track in ’69.
They did major tours of North America and were on practically every variety show on TV. Their success was unparalleled in Japan, where several 7″ singles were released and sold out tours were the norm. But after the band found themselves in label and internal struggles in ’72, and the original members went their separate ways, with the Innesses moving to Vancouver. Bell released Dixie Lee’s debut entitled DIXIE LEE OF THE ORIGINAL CASTE. Along with a cover of Ian Tyson’s “Four Strong Winds,” the album featured strong roots and folk influences, such as in “Black Paper Roses, “Friends With You,” “Seems Like A Long Time,” “The Dolphins” and “Sing Children Sing.” A series of club dates ensued.
After some personnel changes, she reformed the band with Bruce and recorded BACK HOME for Century II Records. She took the next few years off, then signed with the Vancouver indie label PRP Records in ’77, recording in Montreal and releasing CHINOOK that same year. Time had given her folk roots a break and tracks like “Watch Me Fly,” the sentimental “Queen of Colkby, Kansas,” and country-tinged “Losers Get The Blues” were now complimented by the pirky “You Gotta Shake It For The People” and “Rock and Roll.” By the time she’d divorced Bruce in 1980, she’d all but gotten out of music, and found a new career in Social Services in Victoria, BC.