Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties: Clint Black with Lisa Hartman Black, “When I Said I Do”

“When I Said I Do”

Clint Black with Lisa Hartman Black

Written by Clint Black


#1 (2 weeks)

December 4 and December 18, 1999

Radio & Records

#1 (2 weeks)

November 26 – December 3, 1999

A nineties legend earns his final No. 1 hit to date.

The Road to No. 1

Few artists dominated country radio in the nineties as much as Clint Black.  His Nothin’ But the Taillights album produced three No. 1 hits, as well as the top fifteen “Loosen Up My Strings” and the top thirty “You Don’t Need Me Now.” The lead single from his final RCA studio album, D’Lectrified, remains his most recent No. 1 single.

The No. 1

Clint Black still hasn’t regained his gift for writing a strong melody on “When I Said I Do,” but his performance is elevated by the harmony vocal from his wife, Lisa Hartman Black.

There’s something that hits different about a love song from a couple that’s been married for many years already.  They have experienced the challenges of marriage and done the hard work of keeping the relationship together.   That well-earned wisdom gives some gravitas to their performance here.

The lyrics are maddeningly vague and continue Black’s overreliance on wordplay, but it isn’t enough to derail the record, as the soaring chorus is what lingers the most.

The Road From No. 1

Clint Black kicked off the 2000s with “Been There,” a top five collaboration with Steve Wariner.  He’d have two more top forty hits for RCA: “Love She Can’t Live Without” from D’Lectrified and another collaboration with Lisa Hartman Black, “Easy For Me to Say,” from his second hits collection.  Black’s final top ten hit came with “Hey Good Lookin’,” where he guested on a multi-artist single led by Jimmy Buffett.  Launching his own label, he would enjoy two more hits in that decade: “Spend My Time” went top twenty in 2003, and “The Strong One” went top forty in 2007.

Black has continued to record and perform, with his most recent release being the album Out of Sane in 2020.

“When I Said I Do” gets a B.

Every No. 1 Single of the Nineties

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    • I share your love of D’Lectrified. I actually thik this song is kind of out of place for the general cool sound of the album though.

  1. I really like Been There with Steve Wariner off of this album, but out of all of the songs in Clint’s catalogue that strays sonically from what he began with, this arguably my favorite. I agree that the melody does a lot of the heavy lifting.

    Man, the fact that Clint Black’s major success stopped around this time is so frustrating, because he always gets overlooked as a bonafide country music legend. No one started off their career on a better note in country music history in my opinion, and I think he is finally starting to get his due again. I hope he doesn’t have to wait too long to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame,

  2. I like this song a lot, especially the perspective of ‘older marrieds’. I have actually always enjoyed Lisa’s singing and acting as well, especially on Knots Landing, the spinoff of Dallas, back in the day. I always enjoy when she sings with Clint. I love Clint, too.

  3. I have always felt deep shame for how much I blamed Lisa Hartman for the creative undoing of Clint Black. It’s unfair even if this song is another example of just how generic and bland much of his songwriting had become.

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