Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties: Bryan White, “I’m Not Supposed to Love You Anymore”

“I’m Not Supposed to Love You Anymore

Bryan White

Written by Skip Ewing and Donny Kees

Radio & Records

#1 (1 week)

June 7, 1996

Bryan White previews his second studio album with a mopey divorce ballad.

The Road to No. 1

Bryan White’s career featured five No. 1 singles within a short period of time, including four consecutive trips to the top.  After two No. 1 singles from his eponymous debut album, he led off Between Now and Forever with another pair of chart-toppers.

The No. 1

Bryan White was simply too young to pull this song off.

“I’m Not Supposed to Love You Anymore” is a divorce ballad sung from the perspective of a man who is having trouble moving on from what was supposed to be his happy ever after.

White didn’t have the gravitas necessary to make this mopey lyric work.  He sounds like a tween who has been forced to part ways with his security blanket, rather than a man dealing with the aftermath of a marriage breakup.

I wouldn’t be surprised if he nails this song now when he performs it live, much like LeAnn Rimes does now with the material from her early days.

The Road From No. 1

After three No. 1 singles that each topped only one chart, White finally gets a Number One hit that tops both listings, and it’s far more age appropriate.

“I’m Not Supposed to Love You Anymore” gets a C.

Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties

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5 Comments

  1. I may be in the minority, but I think he pulled this off incredibly well, and I never thought of him as a 21-year-old when this was on the radio. He was an interpreter far beyond his years on his first couple albums, and all three of his Skip Ewing-penned singles were very well done.

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  2. I agree with Stephen. I think he sells the song really well and I kept thinking Lee Greenwood could have done a great job with the song. This is my personal favorite Bryan White song but was never a big fan.

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  3. He is playing emotional dress-up with this one. Ewing’s lyrics do all the heavy lifting here. White admirably attempts to imagine how what he is singing about actually feels, but it doesn’t resonate with me. His youth betrays him. My imagination turns to wondering how a harder, more traditional production coupled with a grizzled singer like Vern Gosdin or John Conlee would better serve the story.

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  4. I’m with Stephen and Tyler here in that I think Bryan actually pulled this one off pretty well. In fact, I didn’t even know how old (or more like how young) he was yet when this song was on the radio. I just knew it was a very pretty song that I always liked hearing. It wasn’t until the next few singles after this that I realized he was still a pretty young guy. That’s when I started hearing everyone making a big deal about his youth, and even my step dad always referred to him as “the kid” whenever one of his songs came on or if we saw him on TV.

    His age and performance aside, the song is simply beautiful and it’s another one of my favorite ballads from the mid 90’s. It’s one of the piano ballads from that era that really takes me back to being a kid in that time. I also love how emotional, sensitive, and highly detailed the lyrics are. I especially like the line in the chorus: “I’m fighting back emotions that I never fought before.” I actually think Bryan does a great job of expressing the narrator’s pain when singing that line, especially near the end of the song. I also like the lyric, “I can’t hide the hurt inside my broken heart.” So simple and straight forward, and yet so effective and relatable. You just don’t hear much vulnerable stuff like this on country radio anymore, especially from the guys.

    The video is also very well done and classy like the song. The old abandoned house he’s in provides the perfect setting and atmosphere, and I especially like the scenes with Bryan by the fireplace and when he walking underneath the long spiral staircase, which is a really neat shot. Evidently, the video was shot in the Winter. In one of the 1997 issues of Country Music Magazine with an article on Bryan, there is a picture from the video’s shoot that shows him and the producer standing outside the house, with Bryan wearing a jacket over the suit he’s wearing in the clip and some snow still on the ground. :)

    This is yet another song that rarely got any recurrent airplay for us after its chart run was over. In 1996, I remember hearing it when my dad and I got back to the car after we had gone to Best Buy, which was one of the places I loved going to play video games. Around this time, it was usually Donkey Kong Country 2, which is a game he ended up getting for me later that year. Anyway, while this song was playing in the car, I noticed he had this brand of soda in the front cup holder called Chek that I’d never heard of before. Back in those times, he seemed to always have a unique brand of soda in his car that he just wanted to try at least once. Anyway, I wouldn’t hear this song again until I got Bryan’s Between Now and Forever CD as one of the albums that I picked out for Christmas in 2002. I remember just loving it all over again, and the memories coming back, especially when the first chorus hit. :)

    Btw, it’s pretty neat that his first three number ones were three Skip Ewing songs in a row.

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