Tuesday, January 10, 2017

"When We Make Love" by Alabama

Song#:  1906
Date:  05/19/1984
Debut:  90
Peak:  72
Weeks:  10
Genre:  Country Crossover

Pop Bits:  The 80s were very good to Alabama. As 1984 started, they had already amassed three #1 albums and a streak of 11 consecutive #1 Country hits. They were the hottest band in country music and the success allowed their music to spill over into Pop and AC. Their eighth album, Roll On, would be another big hit for them going to #1 thanks to the success of four more Country #1 hits including the title track and this crossover ballad. While the song wouldn't get very high on the Pop chart, it did do well at AC reaching #8. Although they would finish out the decade strong with four more #1 Country albums and another dozen #1 Country songs, their days as hit makers at Pop and AC came to an end. This song would be their last AC Top 10 and their final one to reach the Pop chart for the decade (excluding a guest appearance on a Lionel Richie single).

ReduxReview:  Pretty much everything about this song is good. It's nicely written, it has a warm 80s production, and it is performed well. The problem is that there were lots of similar ballads at the time and this one just didn't stand out from the pack. I practically forgot it soon after hearing it. Country sent it to #1 (but the band so popular they could have had a nursery rhyme hit #1) and AC showed it some love, but for me it was a little bland and forgettable for single release.

ReduxRating:  5/10

Trivia:  In 1998, a double-CD compilation of all their major hits was issued. Titled For the Record, the album also contained three new songs. Two of them were issued as singles. "How Do You Fall in Love" reached #2 at Country and "Keepin' Up" got to #14. Thanks to the singles and marketing for the album, there was renewed interest in the band. Both songs crossed over to the Pop chart (#82 and #69, respectively) and the album would get to #13 at Pop (#2 Country). It would eventually sell 5 million copies. The album's success spilled over into their next formal studio effort Twentieth Century and the LP's first single "(God Must Have Spent) A Little More Time on You," a cover version of the 1998 Top 10 hit by popular boy band *NSYNC, became their first Pop Top 40 (#29) hit since 1983. It helped that *NSYNC provided the background vocals for the song.


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