Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties: Rick Trevino, “Running Out of Reasons to Run”

“Running Out of Reasons to Run

Rick Trevino

Written by Bob Regan and George Teren

Billboard

#1 (1 week)

March 1, 1997

Radio & Records

#1 (1 week)

February 21, 1997

Rick Trevino tops the charts with his most recent No. 1 hit.

The Road to No. 1

Trevino’s final two No. 1 singles to date came consecutively, with “Running Out of Reasons to Run” following its predecessor, “Learning as You Go,” to the top.

The No. 1

“Running Out of Reasons to Run” is a great title in search of a song.

Handwringers despondent over the genre’s steady march toward pop-flavored country in the late nineties need look no further than this record, which was Trevino’s second consecutive chart-topper from an album that country consumers passed over at retail.

It already sounded like a relic when it hit the airwaves at the time.  This is the kind of generic hat act country that had already reached its saturation point by 1995.  The color by numbers production has as much inspiration musically as a bargain basement Karaoke track, and Trevino’s vocal performance is so restrained that he doesn’t even sound like Rick Trevino so much as a Rick Trevino tribute act that plays for the free drinks.

I implore you, dear readers, to skip over this one entirely and go check out Trevino’s post-Columbia recordings, starting with the stunning divorce ballad “Separate Ways.”   He’s a gifted, expressive singer that was woefully mismanaged by his label and producers on his final projects for Columbia.

The Road From No. 1

Trevino scored a third top ten hit from Learning as You Go: “I Only Get This Way With You.”  His remaining singles for Columbia missed the top forty, and he exited the label by the end of the decade. After some successful Spanish-language releases, he resurfaced on Warner Bros. in 2003, releasing his strongest major label album, In My Dreams.  His second and final Warner Bros. album, Whole Town Blue, is even better, though it remained unreleased until 2011.   He continues to perform as both a solo artist and part of the Los Super Seven, the Grammy Award-winning Tex-Mex supergroup.  Trevino is also heavily involved with voter registration drives in Southern Texas that encourage greater civic participation in the region.

“Running Out of Reasons to Run” gets a C.

Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties

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2 Comments

  1. Even Trevino playing by the Nashville rules sounds good to my ears. I agree that “Seperate Ways” should be considered a classic divorce song. “In My Dreams” is brilliant. I have not heard “Whole Town Blue.” His work with Los Super Seven is significant to the extant you get to listen to an artist sonically embrace and discover his musical roots. I don’t beleive Trevino even spoke Spanish when he recorded his debut album, he needed a vocal coach/translator to help with the songs in Spanish.

    Nashville should get charged an error with the handling of his mainstream career.

  2. I see 1997 as a transitional year from the mid 90’s country sound to the more smooth, warm, and sophisticated production styles of late 90’s country. Early 1997 still had a few songs that still sounded like the mid 90’s, though, and “Running Out Of Reasons To Run” was definitely one of them. Since a lot of mid 90’s songs were still getting recurrent airplay in early ’97 in our area, this song still felt like it belonged to me. It’s one I always enjoyed hearing on the radio during that time, and I remember enjoying it one Saturday afternoon while my dad and I were on the way to the mall after my bowling league game was over.

    Even though this song is about a guy looking to finally settle down with the right woman, it’s always sounded to me like a song that’s perfect for feeling free and cruising with the windows down on a beautiful day. I personally think the song sounds great for a mid 90’s style country song, and I love its energy and Trevino’s enthusiastic performance. Love the steel playing here, too! For me, this one is a must for any road trip playlist, again which is a bit ironic given its lyrics.

    This is also one of Trevino’s first videos I remember seeing, and I saw it quite a few times during my GAC watching days in 1997. Back then, I thought he, Rhett Akins, and Mark Wills all looked a bit similar to each other, especially with their facial features and all three having dark hair.

    Even though Trevino was ultimately better off parting ways with Sony, I do also wish the album he recorded in 1998 called Changing In Your Eyes was released instead of shelved. I personally love the lead single from it, “Only Lonely Me.”

    And I’ve already said it a couple times on this feature, but I’ll say it again: 2003’s “In My Dreams” should’ve been a hit! I instantly fell in love with it on first listen, and I was so excited about its possibilities of launching a successful comeback for Trevino. Unfortunately, Rick’s “Roy Orbison moment” came just a bit too late, as country radio had pretty much moved on from that style of country by then. I’ll still gladly go to bat for it anytime, though, and it’s still one of my personal favorites of his, as well. Love its Raul Malo produced parent album of the same name, too!

    I also really love the song “Whole Town Blue” which showed that he was only getting even better. So catchy and stylish! Man, do I wish radio still made room for him and songs like that!

    And yes, I also definitely agree with you on “Separate Ways.”

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