My Kind of Country

Country music from a fan's point of view since 2008

Week ending 8/21/10: #1 singles this week in country music history

1950: I’m Movin’ On — Hank Snow (RCA)

1960: Please Help Me, I’m Falling — Hank Locklin (RCA)

1970: Don’t Keep Me Hangin’ On — Sonny James (Capitol)

1980: Tennessee River — Alabama (RCA)

1990: Next To You, Next To Me — Shenandoah (Columbia)

2000: What About Now — Lonestar (BNA)

2010: Free — Zac Brown Band (Southern Ground/Atlantic)

5 responses to “Week ending 8/21/10: #1 singles this week in country music history

  1. pwdennis August 22, 2010 at 10:09 am

    It’s finally here – the biggest hit in the history of the genre. “That big eight wheeler rollin’ down the track, means your true lovin’ daddy ain’t comin’back, I’m movin’ on …”

    “I’m Movin’ On” will get knocked from #1 for the next two weeks and then be back for another seventeen (17) weeks at the top, get knocked back for a couple of weeks then be back for two weeks, out for a week and then back at the top for one last week – a total of 21 weeks at number 1 and a total of 27 weeks in the top three. Sales figures from that era are unofficial but it’s been estimated at over two million copies sold (I’ve seen higher estimates that run much higher than two million copies, both those may include album sales and reissues on 45 rpm records – the original issue was on a 78 rpm)

    “Don’t Keep Me Hangin’ On” was a great song by Sonny James , a song that Sonny co-wrote with Carole Smith. 1970 was a big year for Sonny – he had four of the year’s top ten singles

  2. Occasional Hope August 22, 2010 at 11:44 am

    I’ve always really liked that Shenandoh song.

  3. Razor X August 22, 2010 at 2:22 pm

    I actually like the Zac Brown Band song a lot as well.

  4. Ken Johnson August 22, 2010 at 2:47 pm

    Hank Snow’s hit “I’m Movin’ On” proved to be significant on several different counts.

    On March 28, 1950 RCA Victor Records rented the second floor of Brown Radio Productions, a transcription service in downtown Nashville. The artist in studio was Clarence Eugene “Hank” Snow and one of the four sides that he recorded that Tuesday evening was his own composition “I’m Movin’ On.” Using equipment sent from New York it was one of the first Nashville sessions to be recorded on magnetic tape rather than using a cutting lathe and lacquer discs.

    It was also significant because it was one of the first RCA Victor singles to be simultaneously released in both 78 and 45 RPM formats. RCA had unveiled their new 45 RPM single records on March 31, 1949. Each musical genre was designated by a different color of vinyl. Country & Western (as the genre was called back then) was pressed on light green vinyl and received the number “48” for the prefix of its catalog number. The magnetic tape master recording coupled with the higher fidelity 45 RPM technology made the record a sonic standout.

    The song truly saved Hank Snow’s career. Hank had joined the Grand Ole Opry in January 1950. Though his Canadian recordings had made him a star north of the border, he was virtually unknown to U.S. audiences. His first charted U.S. single, “Marriage Vow” made its lone appearance on the Billboard country chart during the final week of 1949 before disappearing. Hank admitted that he was in danger of losing his job at the Opry and his RCA Victor recording contract when “I’m Movin’ On” exploded during the summer of 1950 and shifted his career into high gear.

    Lastly it was a hit that may not have happened without Hank’s perseverance. He had written “I’m Movin’ On” four years earlier and had wanted to record it at his first U.S. RCA Victor session in Chicago on March 8, 1949. Producer Steve Sholes had passed on the song at that time. Hank and his band rehearsed the song with a brand new arrangement prior to the Nashville session one year later. Sholes failed to recognize it as the song he had refused and allowed Hank to record it as the final side for that session. It became Hank Snow’s and country music’s most successful single hit of all time.

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