Hope all is well with y'all as we get through another week of the Pandemic. It has been a long process, but hopefully everyone is safe and healthy.
This week I want to talk a little bit about Bob McDill. He is a songwriter that has had numerous hits on country radio, but all done by other singers. Bob was a very active songwriter from the 70's to 2000, and had 31 #1 hits. He retired in 2000.
Basically, if you are a fan of 80's and 90's country music, you have heard many of his songs.
Bob McDill was born in Walden, Texas in 1944. He learned how to play viola in the 4th grade, and eventually moved on to guitar. After graduation he attended Lamar University in Beaumont and met Dickey Lee and Allen Reynolds who both became successful songwriters as well. Bob enlisted in the Navy and served 2 years active duty. While there, he took songwriting advice from Allen Reynolds, who helped him get his first hit as a songwriter in 1967. The song was called "Happy Man," and was recorded by Perry Como. After the Navy, he moved to Memphis,TN to pursue a full time songwriting career where he decided to shift his focus to country music. He went to Nashville with Allen Reynolds and they got positions working for Jack Music, a publishing company owned by Jack Clement. In 1972, Bob recorded an album of songs he had written called "Short Stories." This album would catch the attention of country artists that would eventually cover many of these songs.
Now that you have an idea of who Bob McDill is, we will get to the music. There are many songs from his repertoire that had chart success, so I have picked out some of my favorites to share with you. Here are some songs that he wrote that might surprise you.
The first one is "Good Ole' Boys Like Me," recorded by Don Williams in 1980. This song made it to #2 on the "Billboard Hot Country Songs Chart," and is a perfect representation of his writing style. Many of his songs would read like a novel. He was very descriptive and could make your mind immediately go to the place he was describing.
Here is Don Williams.
The next song was recorded by Don Williams as well, but made it to #1 when Waylon Jennings recorded it in 1979.
Here is "Amanda."
Now this song has been recorded by many artists including Don Williams, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Chris LeDoux, and Juice Newton. Juice Newton put it on her 1981 album "Juice," but it was never released as a single. The album went platinum with many hits including "Angel of the Morning" and "Queen of Hearts."
Here is "Shot Full of Love."
Next up is another Don Williams does Bob McDill. "If Hollywood Don't Need You (Honey I Still Do)," was a #1 for Williams in 1982, off of his "Listen to the Radio" album. The title track was also a McDill hit, however, this song is considered a Country Classic to this day.
Now we will move forward to 1984, when Mel McDaniel had a number one hit with "Baby's Got Her Blue Jeans On." This one is a little unique for what Bob McDill normally wrote, but it is a catchy song.
This next song was co-written with Dan Seals and is one of my all time favorite country songs. "Everything that Glitters," was released in 1986 and peaked at #1 in the US and Canada.
Here is the amazing voice of Dan Seals.
Next up is a song called "What She Is (Is A Woman in Love)" recorded by Earl Thomas Conley. He had a very unique voice and sang ballads very well. This song peaked at #1 in 1988.
Here is "What She Is."
This next song was also a #1. "Song of the South" was covered by many artists including Bobby Bare and Tom T. Hall, but Alabama took it to #1 in the US and Canada in 1988. Here it is.
Another song that hit #1 in 1988 was "Don't Close Your Eyes" by Keith Whitley. It was off of his album "Don't Close Your Eyes," and would be the last album he would record before dying in 1989.
Here is Keith Whitley with "Don't Close Your Eyes."
Here is another Don Williams recording which was his last Top 10 single. It peaked at #7 on the "Billboard Hot Country Songs Chart in 1991." Here is "Lord Have Mercy on A Country Boy." This tells a very good story that is still happening to this day.
The next song surprised me! I didn't know that Bob McDill wrote this one. "She Don't Know She's Beautiful," was recorded by Sammy Kershaw on his "Haunted Heart" album and went to #1 in the US and Canada in 1993. This song is still played on country radio to this day.
The next song is maybe his most popular of all time. "Gone Country" was covered by Alan Jackson in 1994 on his album "Who I Am," and reached the top of the "Billboard Hot Country Songs Chart."
Here's "Gone Country."
Another song that hit the top of the charts in the 90's was "Why Didn't I Think of That," covered by Doug Stone on his "From the Heart" album in 1993.
Here's Doug Stone.
This next song he co-wrote with Dean Dillon and it went to #4 on the "Billboard Hot Country Songs Chart" for Pam Tillis in 1997.
Here is "All the Good Ones are Gone" off of her "Greatest Hits" album.
The last song I want to leave you with is a guilty pleasure of mine. "Cheap Thrills" has been recorded by David Allan Coe, and Confederate Railroad. The song is one of Bob McDill's lesser known songs, but it has a blues vibe and pretty cool lyrics.
Here is David Allan Coe's version off of his 1983 "Castles in the Sand" album.
So, that is a few of Bob McDill's contributions to the world of songwriting. His songs will be played as long as there is country music.
Thank you Sir for all of the music, and thank y'all for taking the time to stop by and listen to some songs by a sensational songwriter.