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James Ridout "Jesse" Winchester Jr. (May 17, 1944 – April 11, 2014) was an American-Canadian musician and songwriter. He was born and raised in the southern United States. Opposed to the Vietnam War, he moved to Canada in 1967 to avoid being drafted into the US military while the US engaged in the Vietnam War and began his career as a solo artist. His highest-charting recordings were of his own songs, "Yankee Lady" in 1970 and "Say What" in 1981. He became a Canadian citizen in 1973, gained amnesty in the U.S. in 1977 and resettled in Memphis, Tennessee in 2002.
|Birth name||James Ridout Winchester Jr.|
|Born||May 17, 1944|
Bossier City, Louisiana, U.S.
|Origin||Memphis, Tennessee, U.S.|
|Died||April 11, 2014 69) (aged|
Charlottesville, Virginia, U.S.
|Genres||Country, country rock, folk|
|Occupation(s)||Musician, songwriter, producer|
|Instrument(s)||Vocals, guitar, keyboards|
|Years active||Circa 1961 – 2014 (his death)|
|Labels||Appleseed, Bearsville, Stony Plain, Ampex, Victor, Sugar Hill, Great Big Island, Wounded Bird, Blue Plate, Warner Brothers|
Winchester was best known as a songwriter. His songs were recorded by many notable artists, including Patti Page, Elvis Costello, Jimmy Buffett, Joan Baez, Jerry Garcia, Anne Murray, The Weather Girls, Reba McEntire, the Everly Brothers, Lyle Lovett, Emmylou Harris, George Strait, Gary Allan, Willie Nelson, and Michael Stanley. A number of these recordings achieved positions on various charts.