Every #1 Single of the Nineties: John Michael Montgomery, “Be My Baby Tonight”

“Be My Baby Tonight”

John Michael Montgomery

Written by Richard Fagan and Ed Hill


#1 (2 weeks)

August 13 – August 20, 1994

Radio & Records

#1 (1 week)

August 5, 1994

John Michael Montgomery’s first big uptempo hit is a tongue twister.

The Road to No. 1

After “I Swear” became the biggest hit of his career, Atlantic played it safe and sent another romantic ballad to radio.  “Rope the Moon” went top five.  Montgomery then picked up the pace and returned to No. 1.

The No. 1

“Be My Baby Tonight” is a fun novelty record that is still enjoyable to listen to all of these years later.

Montgomery’s youthful exuberance serves him well here, as this would sound a little silly from an older artist.  But it’s fine from a twenty-something cowboy still new to the dating scene and working on their pickup lines.

As radio filler goes, it’s not bad at all.

The Road From No. 1

John Michael Montgomery kicks off a string of consecutive No. 1 singles with “Be My Baby Tonight,” all from two back-to-back quadruple platinum studio albums. We’ll see him again later this year.

“Be My Baby Tonight” gets a B.

Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties

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Next: Diamond Rio, “Love a Little Stronger”


  1. I never warmed to Montgomery as a singer. At least this song is fun and was a challenge to learn to sing along with. It was engaging that way. Finally learning to sing along with it correctly reminded of the same sense of accomplishment I felt learning the words to “Girl on the Billboard” by Del Reeves.

    A party trick just waiting for a party invitation……

  2. I think I finally mastered singing along to this one around my mid-late teens, lol.

    While this isn’t necessarily one of my favorites from John Michael (it got a bit overplayed back in the day), it’s still a pretty fun listen, especially if I’m in one of those “cruisin’ with the windows down” kind of moods. I actually really like JMM’s energy and enthusiasm throughout the record, as well. I also reckon that this was a great chance to show that he was more than just love ballads, which had mainly been his bread and butter up to this point.

    This is also another one I actually did hear a few times on the radio in ’94 when it was brand new. I particularly remember my step dad really digging the rapid fire, tongue twisting chorus the first time hearing it. One other day when my dad was over at the house, all four of us had decided to go out for dinner to Olive Garden. My dad and my mom went in his car while my step dad and I went in his Blazer. Because the Blazer was the only vehicle with a tape deck, of course I just had to bring a tape. I picked one of my favorite tapes from early 1993 (the one I mentioned in Alan Jackson’s “She’s Got The Rhythm”) that I hadn’t listened to in a while, and throughout most of the trip, it played fine. However, when it got to the end and was switching to the other side, the deck was suddenly chewing the tape. He quickly ejected it before it did any further damage and decided to just listen to the radio from that point on. We were almost there, anyway. Well, it happened to be on the local country station, and someone was just requesting to hear this new John Michael Montgomery song (Coincidentally, we had just heard “Life’s a Dance” on the tape earlier). It was a young girl calling in, and we both heard her ask the DJ “Can you play ‘Could you, would you, ain’t you gonna, if I ask you, would you wanna be my baby tonight?!'” She had pretty much all the words right, it was all in perfect timing, and it was actually even faster than the speed Montgomery sings it. I remember my step dad getting a good laugh out of that and being quite impressed that such a young girl nailed that rapid fire chorus over the phone, lol. That was also a good way to take my mind off of one of my favorite tapes nearly getting destroyed for a brief time (and of course, the tape survived and still plays well today :) ).

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