Sunday, October 6, 2013

George Strait - Right Or Wrong

Today (October 6th) marks the thirtieth anniversary of Right Or Wrong, the third studio album from American country singer George Strait. This 1983 release stopped at number 163 on the US Billboard Album Chart but reached number 1 on the US Billboard Country chart.

Side one begins with “You Look So Good in Love”; this first single went to number 1 on both the US and Canadian Country charts. It tells the story of a guy who watches as his ex-lover falls in love with another man. Seeing her happiness, he realizes that he wasn’t the right man for her. The song has a gently swaying melody that puts me in a very relaxed mood.

The second single “Right or Wrong” also hit number 1 on both the US and Canadian Country charts. The song was originally a jazz ballad written in 1921 with music by Arthur Sizemore and Paul Biese, and words by Haven Gillespie. Strait’s version naturally has a country swing to it, in part thanks to Johnny Gimble on the fiddle.

The B-side to the first single was “A Little Heaven’s Rubbing Off on Me”, a song about a dedicated bachelor who suddenly finds a woman that makes him want to change his ways.

“80 Proof Bottle of Tear Stopper” advocates drowning your sorrows with a lot of alcohol. While a good idea for a country song, it is not something I can endorse personally.

The first half closes with the pessimistic “Every Time It Rains (Lord Don’t It Pour)”. The poor narrator of this one cannot seem to catch a break anywhere. This one is my favorite on the album so far.

Side two opens with “You’re the Cloud I’m On (When I’m High)”, the B-side to the third single. It is certainly an interesting way to explain the euphoria of being in love.

“Let’s Fall to Pieces Together”, the third single, also went to number 1 on the US and Canadian Country charts. This one tells the story of a man who has lost the love of his life and decides to pull up a sad song on the jukebox. There, he encounters a woman going through the same. He suggests that they comfort one another.

“I’m Satisfied With You” features an up-tempo, snappy shuffle of a rhythm, made for two-stepping.

“Our Paths May Never Cross” was first recorded by Merle Haggard in 1980 for his album Back to the Barrooms. Strait covers this country tale of star-crossed lovers here.

The closing track “Fifteen Years Going Up (And One Night Coming Down)”, the tune about how one night of temptation can ruin a long-time relationship, was also the B-side to the second single.

In the early 80’s, I was not listening to any country music. As such, George Strait’s early albums were totally new to me. Right Or Wrong was a little tough for me to track down to review as it is not available in the usual digital or streaming outlets. Once again, YouTube comes through and I am again treated to a new and entertaining listening experience.

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