“Like the Rain“
Written by Clint Black and Hayden Nicholas
#1 (3 weeks)
October 26 – November 9, 1996
Radio & Records
#1 (2 weeks)
October 18 – October 25, 1996
Clint Black gets a bit more creative with his production.
The Road to No. 1
After three No. 1 singles from One Emotion, Black went top five with the album’s final single, “Life Gets Away.” He then previewed his first compilation, The Greatest Hits, with this chart-topping ballad.
The No. 1
What do you do when you’ve run out of good ideas for a song but you still need to send new material to radio?
You get creative with the production. “Like the Rain” sounds nothing like the hits from his previous five albums, shaking off the Haggard-inspired traditionalism to experiment with a beefier sound. The record opens with falling rain, setting the stage for the lyric which is no less pedestrian than his efforts that preceded it.
But at least it sounds interesting, and because it deviates from his well-worn template, it doesn’t immediately conjure up his brilliant earlier work and then suffer in comparison to it.
Still, the song is performed in a monotone throughout most of the track, with no discernable melody. This draws attention to the awkwardness of the songwriting, with a particularly clunky transition in the chorus: “Like the rain I have fallen for you and now I now just why you like the rain, always calling for you, I’m falling for you now just like the rain.”
Look, when you’re essentially rewriting a minor Neal McCoy hit and you still can’t do better than that, then you better make the record sound interesting, I guess.
The Road From No. 1
“Half Way Up” was released next, and it went top ten. Black then previewed his sixth studio album with “Still Holdin’ On,” a duet with Martina McBride that became his first official radio single to miss the Billboard top ten. But he’d be back in business with the next two singles from that album. We’ll cover the first one toward the end of 1997.
“Like the Rain” gets a C+.
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