“There Ain’t Nothin’ Wrong With the Radio”
Written by Buddy Brock and Aaron Tippin
#1 (3 weeks)
April 18 – May 2, 1992
Radio & Records
#1 (1 week)
April 17, 1992
Another young traditionalist earns his first No. 1 hit.
The Road to No. 1
Born in Florida and raised in South Carolina, Aaron Tippin took the long way to Music Row success. He worked as a pilot and a pipe fitter before making the move to Nashville, where he earned a publishing deal with Acuff-Rose, following his appearance on TNN’s You Can Be a Star. He earned a handful of cuts, including minor hit singles for other artists that he’d eventually release himself. A 1990 club performance caught the attention of RCA Nashville, and they signed him to a recording contract.
His debut album, You’ve Got to Stand For Something, included the top ten title track and was eventually certified gold. Two other singles underperformed, but he rebounded with the lead single from his second album, Read Between the Lines.
The No. 1
“There Ain’t Nothin’ Wrong With the Radio” is an energetic and uproarious ode to a broken down car that still gets great radio reception:
“The older she gets, the slower we go, but there ain’t nothin’ wrong with the radio.”
Tippin would spend most of his career documenting his working class bona fides, but this record did as much as any of his more explicit explorations of that identity to establish his everyman status.
In an era with so many great traditional male vocalists, Tippin might have been the most unabashedly old school, sounding like a modern day Hank Williams meets Webb Pierce.
He only has a handful of No. 1 singles to his credit, but his radio success always trailed behind his popularity with audiences. Here’s one time that country radio got it right.
The Road From No. 1
Read Between the Lines produced two more top ten hits on its way to platinum: “I Wouldn’t Have it Any Other Way” and “My Blue Angel.” His next album, The Call of the Wild, also went platinum, despite including only one top ten hit: “Working Man’s Ph.D.” His fourth album, Lookin’ Back at Myself, didn’t produce any top ten hits, but still went gold. RCA responded by pushing Tippin in a different musical direction, and it brought him his second No. 1 hit, which we’ll cover when we get to 1995.
“There Ain’t Nothin’ Wrong With the Radio” gets an A.
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