My Kind of Country

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

Week ending 8/18/12: #1 singles this week in country music history

1952: The Wild Side of Life — Hank Thompson (Capitol)

1962: Wolverton Mountain — Claude King (Columbia)

1972: Bless Your Heart — Freddie Hart & The Heartbeats (Capitol)

1982: I’m Gonna Hire A Wino To Decorate Our Home — David Frizzell (Warner Bros./Viva)

1992: Boot Scootin’ Boogie — Brooks & Dunn (Arista)

2002: The Good Stuff — Kenny Chesney (BNA)

2012: Come Over — Kenny Chesney (Blue Chair/Columbia)

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2 responses to “Week ending 8/18/12: #1 singles this week in country music history

  1. luckyoldsun August 19, 2012 at 7:15 am

    I once read an interview with David Frizzell where he said that the first time he heard it and saw the lyrics to “Wino,” he thought it was one of the most brilliant songs hed ever heard . I guess that’s why his record worked so well–the singer has to start out believing in the song!

  2. Ken Johnson August 19, 2012 at 8:40 am

    In 1952 Hank Thompson began his fifteenth and final week at the top of Billboard’s best-selling country singles chart. “The Wild Side Of Life” also topped the country jukebox survey for the 13th time as Hank and his Brazos Valley Boys band began a western tour through Colorado, Montana & Wyoming.

    Sixty years ago this week Eddy Arnold started a three week run at the top of Billboard’s country disc jockey survey. “A Full Time Job” was a lighthearted tongue-in-cheek novelty song [I want a full time job making love to you….] that fit Eddy’s casual style so well. Recorded on May 15, 1952 at the Brown Radio Productions studio in Nashville it spotlighted superb steel guitar licks by Little Roy Wiggins and excellent fiddling by Skeeter Willis. But the highlight of that recording was the red-hot lead guitar solo by Hank “Sugarfoot” Garland playing on his first Eddy Arnold recording session as the newest member of Eddy’s band. That record was Eddy’s 17th number one single but became a “lost” hit as it was never included on an Eddy Arnold album or hits collection until the CD era.

    Claude King’s most successful record “Wolverton Mountain” began an eighth week at the top in 1962. While his song was dominating the country chart Claude entered Columbia studios in Nashville on August 15th to record his next single release. The ill-timed choice was “The Burning Of Atlanta” released early that fall. Fashioned in the mode of the late Johnny Horton’s historical songs the record barely climbed to #10 spending a total of less than two months on the chart. The tag line of the song “…the south’s gonna rise again” didn’t fit in too well with the atmosphere of racial unrest growing in the early 1960’s. Most of the country outside of the south was not wishing for a Confederate resurrection. Claude’s career lost all of the momentum that he had built.

    Freddie Hart was one of the hottest country music’s stars of 1972. Earlier that year “My Hang Up Is You” spent six weeks at number one. Freddie returned to the top with a song that he co-wrote “Bless Your Heart.” Recorded in Nashville on April 11, 1972 the title was based on a common southern expression that phonetically included his stage surname. The single climbed to number one in just eight weeks. With this release Freddie borrowed a page from fellow Capitol Records artists Buck Owens and Merle Haggard. He credited his band The Heartbeats on the label of his records.

    David Frizzell began his singing career alongside his legendary brother. As a 13 year old teenager David was already sharing the stage with Lefty who allowed his younger sibling open his shows in the 1950’s. Though David was signed to Columbia Records in 1958 his journey took more than 20 years and a half dozen record labels until he attained his first big hit. Success finally came with duet partner Shelly West and the 1981 smash “You’re The Reason God Made Oklahoma.” David also intended to continue his solo career. In late 1981 he released “Lefty” a tribute song to his late brother that failed to catch on even with a guest vocal from Merle Haggard. The song chosen for David’s next single was written by Dewayne Blackwell who wrote the Fleetwoods 1959 rock & roll hit “Mr. Blue.” When David heard Blackwell’s demo recording of “I’m Gonna Hire A Wino To Decorate Our Home” he knew that it was a hit. Country fans confirmed his intuition thirty years ago this week when the single climbed to #1. Blackwell went on to co-write Garth Brooks 1990 hit “Friends In Low Places.”

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