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Shoulda Been a Hit

Shoulda Been a Hit

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Shoulda Been a Hit: Julie Roberts “Men & Mascara” [Video]

You could argue that I should have chosen Julie Roberts debut single, "Break Down Here," for this column.  While that song put Roberts on the country music map, it topped out at mile marker #18 on the country charts.  Loved that song.  But I loved this one more.

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(Image from TammyCochranFans.com)
(Image from TammyCochranFans.com)
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Shoulda Been a Hit: Tammy Cochran’s “What Kind of Woman Would I Be”

I have been writing this column for months now at WBKR.com and I believe that THIS is a first.  Typically, when I discuss a song that shoulda been a hit, it at least came close.  All my selections to date have charted on the Billboard Country Chart.  They just haven't charted high enough to be considered a hit.  This week's song didn't chart AT ALL!  And, the fact that "What Kind of Woman Would I Be" was a big chart miss for Tammy Cochran, I think it ultimately contributed to her relative disappearance from the country conversation.  In my opinion, it SHOULD have had the opposite effect.

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Shoulda Been a Hit: Blake Shelton’s “All Over Me” [Video]

This is one of those songs.  And by "one of those songs" I mean a tune that would be a HUGE hit if it was released right now.  But, the funny thing with a song like Blake Shelton's "All Over Me" is that it was released before Blake was a bona fide country music superstar.  That said, his very first single, "Austin" landed at number one on the Billboard Country chart.  But his follow-up . . . this song . . . didn't do well at all.   Remember this??

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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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Shoulda Been a Hit: Garth’s “When You Come Back To Me Again”

This week's Shoulda Been a Hit column is going to look a little different.  Normally, I include the official video for the song that I choose, but, given Garth's disdain for YouTube and ITunes, that's just not going to happen.  And, now, I know what you're thinking . . . "Garth Brooks had a song that wasn't a hit?"  He sure did.  It was "When You Come Back to Me Again," which peaked at a disappointing #21 on the Billboard Country Chart.  How on Earth was that possible?  The song had everything going for it.

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Shoulda Been a Hit: Chely Wright’s “She Went Out for Cigarettes” [Video]

Did you know that Chely Wright only had one top ten hit in her career?  It's true.  She reached #1 in 1999 with the huge smash "Single White Female," but didn't have another song to break the Top Ten on the Billboard charts.  I suppose, because of that fact, I could easily have written about "Shut Up and Drive" in this week's Should Been a Hit column.  After all, that's one of my favorite country songs . . . EVER.  But, instead, I'm choosing "She Went Out for Cigarettes."  And here's why . . .

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Shoulda Been a Hit: Mindy McCready’s “You’ll Never Know” [Video]

Mindy McCready.  In a hot tub.  Riding a snowmobile.  Building a snowman.  Flirting with her real-life boyfriend at the time, Dean Cain.  And this wasn't a hit?  WHAT???   In 1996, Mindy McCready just sprinted out the blocks and recording studio to race straight up the Billboard country chart.  Her first single, "Ten Thousand Angels," peaked at #6.  Her follow-up, "Guys Do it All the Time," was a monster and hit the very top of the charts.  But that success didn't last long and, by 1998, Mindy was struggling.   Her sophomore CD, If I Don't Stay the Night, was primed to deliver more Top Ten hits . . . only it didn't.  And this song, the Kim Richey-penned "You'll Never Know," finally ran out of steam at #19. It was the last time that Mindy McCready would crack the Top 20.  But, if you ask me, it SHOULDA BEEN A HIT!  Listen!

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(Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for SeriousFun Children's Network)
(Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for SeriousFun Children's Network)
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Shoulda Been a Hit: Trisha’s “Where Are You Now” [Video]

On Project Runway each week, Heidi Klum says that, in the world of fashion, "One day you're in.  The next day, you're out."  The same thing can actually be said of country music.  Just ask 90's country superstar Trisha Yearwood, who totally ran out of chart steam as she headed into the year 2000.  Yep.  even Trisha Yearwood fell out of favor with country radio!!  In 1991, she came out of the gates fast with the #1 hit "She's in Love with the Boy."  And Trisha followed that up BIG TIME with even more #1 hits and a total of 18 Top Tens through 1999.  But, then, the streak came crashing to a halt.  And, in 2000, she released "Where Are You Now" and it didn't even come close the Top Ten . . . or Top 20 . . . or 30 . . . or even Top 40!!  How is that possible?  Because this song . . . SHOULDA BEEN A HIT!  Listen!

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Shoulda Been a Hit: Brad Martin’s “Before I Knew Better” [Video]

Remember the name Brad Martin?  If you don't, I'm not surprised.  But, now that I say that, I'd be more surprised if you DO remember that name.  But about ten years ago, Brad Martin had all the makings of a country star.  He was a guitar-playing singer-songwriter with a great voice and a look reminiscent of a Rebel Without a Cause James Dean.  In 2002, Brad released his debut CD, Wings of a Honky-Tonk Angel, and looked poised to make a run at the Top Ten with his lead-off single, "Before I Knew Better."  But the song, despite the fact that BMI declared it one of the 50 most played that year, just never caught on enough to make Brad Martin the star he was supposed to become for Sony Epic Nashville.  And "Before I Knew Better" peaked at #15.  Though, if you ask me, it shoulda been a hit.  LISTEN!

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