Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties: George Strait, “Check Yes or No”

“Check Yes or No

George Strait

Written by Dana Hunt Black and Danny Wells

Billboard

#1 (4 weeks)

November 11 – December 2, 1995

Radio & Records

#1 (3 weeks)

October 27 – November 10, 1995

One of George Strait’s biggest and most enduring hits.

The Road to No. 1

Following the No. 1 hits “The Big One” and “You Can’t Make a Heart Love Somebody,” Lead On produced two more hits: the top five “Adalida” and the top ten title track.  Strait returned to the top with the lead single from his mega-selling box set, Strait Out of the Box.

The No. 1

“Check Yes or No” inspired a whole host of imitators that only further reinforced the unique nature of the original composition and the peerless delivery of the singer who recorded it.

Strait decided to record it after a morning car ride with his son Bubba, who was in a foul mood.  The song made his son smile in spite of himself.

“Check Yes or No” captures the innocence of childhood – “I think this is how love goes?” – while also delivering on the promise of that innocence, as the couple is still together all those years later, only now the chasing around happens in the bedroom instead of on the playground.

This was the hit that kicked off the Strait revival on the awards show circuit, and rightfully so.

The Road From No. 1

Strait Out of the Box produced an additional top five hit, “I Know She Still Loves Me,” as it became the best-selling country box set by any artist.  Strait then pivoted to his award-winning Blue Clear Sky album. We’ll see the title track first in 1996.

“Check Yes or No” gets an A.

Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties

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5 Comments

  1. Man. I remember when this song and the box set came out, I was thinking it was going to be it for George. I can’t explain exactly why, other than the fact that he’d been at it for just shy 15 years at the time and back then that seemed like such a long time to me. (I was 17 when it was released.)

    I never, ever would have guessed that some of his greatest artistic & commercial success lay ahead.

    1
    • And a second Strait Out of the Box volume that covers an even longer period of time than the first one did!

      Really, the best thing for his music in recent years has been putting more breathing room between albums. It’s made each individual album stronger as a result.

      2
      • ~2 years does seem to be the sweet spot. My favorite of the last 15 years was Here For A Good Time, but they’ve all been really good.

  2. To me this is a B as there’s nothing incredibly special about it; however this was one of the most glaring omissions on the Sirius list from a few years ago. It’s one of those songs that, even if they don’t listen to or like country music, almost everyone knows about the song.

  3. This is the song I like least of his biggest hits. I agree that it crossed-over and registered with non-country fans in ways I wouldn’t have thought it would. My girlfriend in university loved this song. It is cute and well-performed but unremarkable to my ears.

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