“Tryin’ to Get Over You”
Written by Vince Gill
#1 (1 week)
March 12, 1994
Radio & Records
#1 (2 weeks)
February 25 – March 4, 1994
Gill closes out his award-winning album with a devastating final single.
The Road to No. 1
We’re up to number seven in Gill’s streak of ten consecutive No. 1 singles. This one might be the best.
The No. 1
“I’ve been trying to get over you, but it’ll take dying to get it done.”
And with that, we have the most devastating of divorce ballads, up there with “The Grand Tour” and Gill’s own “When I Call Your Name.”
This record is dark. The narrator is completely despondent, having lost any will to go out and enjoy himself, let alone try to start over with someone new. After all, “life don’t mean nothing without you.”
Gill’s high lonesome wail is tailor made for material like this. If you’re new to country music and wondering why this Vince guy won so many awards and went into the Hall of Fame so young, start here.
The Road From No. 1
Another classic ballad is up next, the first of three chart-toppers this year from his 1994 studio album.
“Tryin’ to Get Over You” gets an A.
Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties
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Needless to say, this is one of my favorite Vince Gill songs and it’s also the song that was climbing the charts when I got into country music. It wouldn’t be too long after this that I decided that Vince Gill was my favorite music artist, which is a position I still hold today!
This song has always made me laugh. Laugh because one of my Hamline University roommates, who had recently fully gotten on board the country bandwagon (he adored Wylie and the Wild West and the Mavericks), misheard the devastating linchpin lyric as the more mundane “it will take t-i-m-e to get it done.” Even funnier, was that he was a vocal music major, and he could be heard singing this song song in full voice with the misheard lyric. He and I would go back and forth about it and how much was lost in his translation of the song! Just one more memory of how alive all this new music felt at the time it was being released and running up and down the charts.
When heard as written, the lyric is harrowing to listen to. Gill is at his best here as has already been mentioned. This is a sublime song. For the record, this is another Tony Brown production.
I have found it interesting ( and may be repeating myself) how quickly radio moved away from Gill and how one has to go out of their way to explain just how big a star Gill was in his day.
This is another one of my favorite singles off of I Still Believe In You, and one of my all time favorites from Vince, in general. Once again, he proves that he’s a master at devastatingly sad ballads, and the final line in the chorus “It’ll take dying to get it done” is the most heartbreaking of them all. The steel guitar and Vince’s own guitar playing are also used to great effect and are a perfect fit for the very downbeat lyrics.
This is another song that I always enjoyed hearing on the radio as I got back into listening to country radio in the mid 90’s. I even remember hearing it in the car with my dad around early 1998, not too long before he got me his Souvenirs album for my birthday. Needless to say, it was definitely one of my favorites on that cd. Despite being such a sad song, it always takes me back to good times from that period in my childhood.
And again, I find it very pretty fascinating how a 1992 album was still producing a highly successful single in early 1994. As I mentioned in the latest Alan Jackson entry, I sort of think of early ’94 as the tail end of the “early 90’s” era of country, and I’ve always wondered how long country radio back then still sounded like “the early 90’s” before it started sounding a lot more like “the mid 90’s,” if anyone gets my drift. It’s one of the reasons why I wish I was still listening to country radio during this time.
Peter – That was quite an unexpectedly funny story surrounding this song! lol Funny how just one word can make such a difference in a song’s emotional impact.
It’s strange to describe an award-winning Country Music Hall of Famer as under-appreciated, but Vince Gill will always be that to me. I would say this song is one of my favorites, but I could say that about a lot of Vince Gill songs lol. This is probably number 2 for me behind When I Call Your Name.
It really is sad how Vince seems quite often overlooked nowadays compared to other male superstars of the decade (Strait, Jackson, Brooks, B&D, McGraw, etc.) This is me only guessing, but it might have something to do with the majority of his hit songs being serious, heavy ballads, which hasn’t seemed “cool” among many of the younger modern casual country fans in quite a while. That, and maybe his clean cut, nice guy image doesn’t exactly make him one of the first choices for many modern country fans who like to listen to both bro-country AND 90’s country.
I remember around 2013-2014 there was this internet radio service called Jelli, in which listeners could control what each station played by voting each song up or down. The country station had a mix of modern country (which was, of course, bro-country at the time) and some older country. I quickly grew frustrated in participating in the station because the majority of the listeners always voted the bro-country up and the older stuff down, but the 90’s country songs that actually did get voted up were usually the well known hit songs from guys like Garth, Strait, Jackson, B&D, Toby, etc., most of them being the ditties that were overplayed back in the day. Every time I tried to vote any Vince songs up, they would usually get voted down immediately or even bombed (you “bombed” a song you didn’t want to hear at all by putting it all the way back to the bottom of the stack with 0 votes.) That was one of my first eye openers on where certain artists and songs stood with the general younger country listeners back then. And yeah, a lot of the women (unless it was Carrie or Miranda) ended up getting voted down most of the time, too.
Peter – I always thought radio moved on from Vince way too soon. It’s just yet another one of the things that made me begin losing interest in country radio from around 2003-2004.