Every #1 Single of the Nineties: Randy Travis, “Look Heart, No Hands”

“Look Heart, No Hands”

Randy Travis

Written by Trey Bruce and Russell Smith

Billboard

#1 (2 weeks)

January 23 – January 30, 1993

Radio & Records

#1 (1 week)

January 15, 1993

A trio of love songs today, and this one’s the best.

The Road to No. 1

Randy Travis released two Greatest Hits packages on the same day.  After topping the charts with “If I Didn’t Have You” from Volume One, he scored another No. 1 hit with the only single released from Volume Two.

The No. 1

He may be most associated with the eighties, but some of Randy Travis’ best singles came out in the nineties.

This is one of the best love songs of the decade, connecting the feelings of invincibility from the days of youth to the safety and security created by finding your soul mate.

“No doubts. No fears. Just like when you are here.”

Perhaps it’s a bit dated now, but the image of riding a bike with that fearlessness (“tennis shoes up on the handlebars, paying no mind to the passing cars”) resonates with my childhood.

Travis sings it beautifully, with nuance and restraint.  It makes for quite the contrast with the next two entries.

The Road From No. 1

Travis pulled one more single from Greatest Hits Volume One. “An Old Pair of Shoes” fell well short of the top ten.  He then moved on to the Wind in the Wire soundtrack, which featured songs from his television movie of the same name.  Two singles from the project, “Cowboy Boogie” and the title track, peaked outside the top forty.

But Travis still had some more No. 1 singles on the way in the nineties, and we’ll cover the next two when we get to 1994.

“Look Heart, No Hands” gets an A. 

Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties

Previous: Garth Brooks, “Somewhere Other Than the Night” |

Next: Doug Stone, “Too Busy Being in Love”

 

4 Comments

  1. This was never one of my favorite Randy Travis songs. I have both greatest hits packages and remember skipping over it a lot but I guess I thought it was sappy.

  2. I absolutely adore this song, and it’s hands down one of my favorite songs Randy has ever done. It’s simply beautiful, from the melody, the production, and the lyrics recalling childhood moments that give it a charmingly innocent feel. It’s a unique approach to a love song, and I think it’s one of the things that has really helped make it stand out for me after all these years, especially since I’ve always considered myself still a child at heart. I’ve always loved Randy’s performance on it, as well, and even the way he sings the bridge is beautiful (especially “I can almost feel that wind”). And the way he sings the last “no hands” at the end of the song still gets me. And as about usual for a Randy Travis record, there’s some lovely dobro playing that I enjoy as well. Yeah, I’m totally with you on this being one of the best love songs of the decade!

    And also as about usual for most of these late 1992/early 1993 songs, this is yet another song that brings back great memories of the earliest times I spent in our current house and the places we went back then. Particularly for this song, it reminds me of when we had a lot of snow during that Winter, which was the first big snow I remember us having while living in this house. I remember really liking this song back then too, but unfortunately, it somehow remained elusive whenever I happened to be recording a tape. After that, I don’t recall hearing it as much on the radio until around 1999 when we started listing to an independently owned station that played all kinds of 80’s and early 90’s songs as recurrents. Hearing it again really took me back, and I remember being mesmerized by it and really enjoying it all over again. The barbeque restaurant we started going to regularly after that also had Randy’s Greatest Hits Volume Two as part of their regular rotation. A few years later, I finally picked up a collection of his number one hits so I could enjoy it whenever I wanted. Also, I remember my step dad liking this song, as well, and I remember him singing along to it one time when we were in the car. :)

    I’ve always loved the video for this song, too, and even Randy looks like he genuinely enjoyed singing this song.

  3. This song is one of my favourite Travis singles. It sounds like summer feels as a kid and projects that sense of freedom and wonder into adulthood.

    We have listened to Black, Gill, and Jackson (among many others) mature into generational talents. Randy Travis still towers over them.

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