Tuesday, August 5, 2014

"Always on My Mind" by Willie Nelson

Top 10 Alert!
Platinum Record Alert!
Grammy Alert!
Song#:  0938
Date:  03/06/1982
Debut:  88
Peak:  5
Weeks:  23
Genre:  Country

Pop Bits:  By 1982, Nelson had scored 16 solo Top 10 hits on the country chart including 7 #1's. How many Top 10's did he have at pop? Zero. That is until he recorded this song. Serving as the first single from the same-titled album, it zoomed up the country chart to #1. Pop radio caught on and very soon Nelson had his first pop Top 10 hit. The song was so strong that it ended up being the #1 country single of the year and received a platinum certification. The album would peak at #2 pop and spend 22 weeks at #1 on the country chart. It would also become the second best-selling of his career behind his 1978 standards album "Stardust." The song would go on to receive three Grammy awards for Song of the Year, Best Country Song, and Best Male Country Vocal Performance. In a career filled with many peak moments, this was one of Nelson's most popular periods.

ReduxReview:  For me, Willie Nelson has one of those voices that can be both beautiful and annoying at the same time. Because of that, I didn't fully appreciate this song back in the day. Over the years it has grown on me and I've begun to hear why people enjoyed it so much. It's a well-written, pretty song and Nelson's performance is nicely vulnerable.

ReduxRating:  7/10

Trivia:  Published in 1972, this song was first recorded that year by Gwen McCrae and then Brenda Lee.  Lee's single version hit the country chart but only got as high as #45. Also that year, Elvis Presley recorded the song. It served as the b-side to his #20 song "Separate Ways." The song would go on to reach the pop Top 10 again in 1988 when Pet Shop Boys hit #4 with their remake.


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