“Wish You Were Here”
Written by Bill Anderson, Skip Ewing, and Debbie Moore
#1 (1 week)
May 8, 1999
Radio & Records
#1 (3 weeks)
April 23 -May 7, 1999
Mark Wills sings about a postcard from beyond the grave.
The Road to No. 1
The title track from Wish You Were Here was the album’s third consecutive No. 1 single, following “I Do [Cherish You]” and “Don’t Laugh at Me.”
The No. 1
We’re in the “songwriters cribbing from e-mail forwards” era of country music.
This isn’t even the worst example that went to No. 1. We’ll cover that John Michael Montgomery hit down the road.
But it’s still plain awful, somehow taking a somewhat funny joke and turning it into a morbid, maudlin ballad about a grieving widow receiving a postcard from her husband after his plane goes down.
The record is slow and plodding, with Wills sounding like he’s in a comatose state through most of it.
I’d add some of it’s redeeming qualities to balance out this review if I could just identify any.
The Road From No. 1
Mark Wills had another top ten hit from Wish You Were Here: “She’s in Love.” He followed up this platinum album with the gold-selling Permanently, which featured his last hit of the decade: the top five “Back at One.” Wills will appear again when we get to the 2000s.
“Wish You Were Here” gets an F.
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