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Should Been a Hit: Tim McGraw’s “Drugs or Jesus” [Video]

I don’t get it.  That’s pretty much the common thread in this column every week, right?  To me, there are songs that SHOULD have been hits that weren’t.  And, sometimes, they belong to artists who ALWAYS have hit songs.  In those instances it’s even more difficult to imagine a song NOT cracking the Top Ten.  Take, for instance, “Drugs or Jesus” by Tim McGraw.  At the time of its release, Tim had struck gold with his CD Live Like You Were Dying and was coming off 4 consecutive #1’s.  This song, by design, should have had enough momentum to at least crack the Top Ten.  But, it didn’t.  In fact, for whatever reason . . . the possibly off-putting title, the heavy subject matter . . . it stalled out in the teens.  But, I think “Drugs or Jesus” SHOULDA BEEN A HIT!  Listen!

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Not only was this NOT a Top Ten hit, it is a huge blemish on McGraw’s string of chart successes.  Tim failed to have a hit with “Two Steppin’ Mind” (#71) way back in 1993.  But then came his #8 smash “Indian Outlaw” and a decade’s worth of #1’s and other Top Tens.  It wasn’t until 2002 that Tim failed to crack the Top 40 again . . . and that happened with his ill-advised cover of Elton John’s “Tiny Dancer.”  “Drugs or Jesus”, released in 2005, is the only other blemish on that 12-year streak.  It reached a mere #14.

And, like I said . . . I don’t get it.  I loved this song then and do to this day.

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