Written by Tim DuBois and Wood Newton
#1 (1 week)
October 3, 1981
Tim DuBois would enjoy his most significant professional success as the founder of the Nashville division of Arista Records, where he launched the careers of Alan Jackson, Brooks & Dunn, Pam Tillis, and Diamond Rio. But before that, he was a remarkably accomplished songwriter who will make multiple appearances at No. 1 during the eighties.
Razzy Bailey’s “Midnight Hauler” might be among the least remembered of those DuBois-penned hits, but it’s not because of any shortcomings. The song is a frenzied rush that captures the drive of a trucker, and features specificity in its lyrics that rivals other classics with this theme, like “Six Days On the Road” and “Eighteen Wheels and a Dozen Roses.”
Bailey sings of “a belly full of coffee and whites,” and it sounds like everyone in the studio was on a similar diet. This record is relentless, and Bailey sounds more engaged and vocally distinctive than he has on any record we’ve covered so far. The musicians tear it up, with an absolutely sizzling guitar solo rivaling the fast paced piano for the biggest musical highlight of the track.
This one was a delicious surprise that is worthy of rediscovery.
“Midnight Hauler” gets an A.
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