At first glance you’d think this week’s Song Lyric Sunday would be about what is going on right now in Nashville. Instead it is about a movement in country music that began several decades ago.
In the early 1960s, the Nashville Sound began to be challenged by the rival Bakersfield sound on the country side and by the British Invasion on the pop side; compounding these problems were the sudden deaths, in separate airplane crashes, of Patsy Cline and Jim Reeves, two of the Nashville Sound’s biggest stars. Nashville’s pop song structure became more pronounced, and it morphed into what was called Countrypolitan: a smoother sound typified through the use of lush string arrangements with a real orchestra and often background vocals provided by a choir. Countrypolitan was aimed straight at mainstream markets, and its music sold well through the later 1960s into the mid-1970s. Among the architects of this sound were producers Billy Sherrill (who was instrumental in shaping Tammy Wynette’s early career) and Glenn Sutton. Artists who typified the countrypolitan sound initially included Wynette, Charlie Rich, and Charley Pride, along with Los Angeles-based singers Lynn Anderson and Glen Campbell. George Jones’s style of the era successfully fused the countrypolitan sound with the honky-tonk style that had made him famous.
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I have chosen a song that has been covered many times over the years by the best of them. This version of Misty Blue by Billy Jo Spears is a great one and it was recorded in Nashville, just as it says on the record label.
“Misty Blue” is a song written by Bob Montgomery that has been recorded and made commercially successful by several music artists. Although Montgomery wrote the song for a different artist in mind, it was brought first to the attention of Wilma Burgess in 1966. It was recorded by Eddy Arnold the following year, both versions were top 5 Country Hits. A decade later, blues artist Dorothy Moore released the highest-charting version of the song and it reached the top ten in several different radio formats. Following Moore’s revival of the track, numerous artists re-covered the tune, including country artist Billie Jo Spears. Spears’s version would also go on to become a successful single release. Numerous other artists and musicians of different genres have recorded their own versions of “Misty Blue”. The song is now considered both a country music and blues standard.
The revival of “Misty Blue” by Dorothy Moore renewed country artists’ interests in the song. In January 1976, alongside producer Larry Butler, Spears had recently regained success with the help of Butler’s modern production and had major hits with songs like “Blanket on the Ground” and “What I’ve Got in Mind”. After internationally issuing a single, Spears released “Misty Blue” to the American market in May 1976 via United Artists Records. The song would peak within the top five of the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart that year, becoming Spears’s fourth top-ten single. “Misty Blue” was then issued on Spears’s 1976 studio album entitled What I’ve Got in Mind.
Courtesy of Wiki
Oh, it's been such a long, long time Looks like I'd get you off my mind Oh, but I can't, just the thought of you Turns my whole world a misty blue Just the mention of your name Turns the flicker to a flame I think of things we used to do Then my whole world turns misty blue I should forget you Heaven knows I tried But when I say, "I'm glad we're through" My heart knows I lied Oh, it's been such a long, long time Looks like I'd get you off my mind Oh, but I can't, just the thought of you Turns my whole world a misty blue Oh, but I can't, just the thought of you Turns my whole world a misty blue