Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties: Clint Black, “Nothin’ But the Taillights”

“Nothin’ But the Taillights”

Clint Black

Written by Clint Black and Steve Wariner


#1 (2 weeks)

March 21 – March 28, 1998

Radio & Records

#1 (2 weeks)

March 13 – March 20, 1998

Clint Black’s stranded on the side of the road.

The Road to No. 1

One of the decade’s most consistent hitmakers is in the midst of another string of consecutive No. 1 hits, all from his Nothin’ But the Taillights set.  After topping the chart with “Something That We Do,” he spent two weeks atop both listings with the album’s title track.

The No. 1

“Nothin’ But the Taillights” has a groove that is quite similar to his earlier No. 1 hit, “A Good Run of Bad Luck.”

It works more effectively this time, largely because the lyric tells a humorous story about Black getting abandoned on the side of the road after a fight with his partner.  After licking his wounds for two verses, he vows revenge in the bridge, promising a role reversal “once she gives me back my keys.”

His guitar work is fantastic, and even the sound effects reinforce the storyline without being gratuitous or intrusive.  It’s one of his best singles from this era, and a very deserving No. 1 hit.

The Road From No. 1

One more No. 1 single is on the way from this album, and we’ll cover it a bit later in 1998.

“Nothin’ But the Taillights” gets a B+.


Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties

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  1. In order, Randy, Clint and Garth REALLY got me in to country music. George, Vince and Alan are my favorites on top of the original three. Glint may have not measured up to Killing Time but, geez, even his non-commercial stuff in this century is GREAT!!

  2. Black emphatically steps out of his listless and uninspired funk with this single. It crackles and snarls with a Bakersfield-kind of twang and instrumental intensity. There is a sonic urgency that has been absent for some time from his most recent singles. Black sounds engaged vocally, all with a winking awareness of what has just happened to him on the side of the road. With this one hit, it is suddenly okay to beleive in Clint Black again!

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