“Why Baby Why”
Written by Darrell Edwards and George Jones
#1 (1 week)
February 26, 1983
A faux live recording became a major hit for Charley Pride in 1983.
“Why Baby Why” was added to Pride’s live album, with an applause track added to the studio recording of the song. It later anchored his Country Classics album, which included the applause-free version that radio stations preferred.
Pride was covering a George Jones classic that had been the legend’s first major chart hit, going top five upon release. Pride wasn’t the first to take a cover of it to No. 1. Red Sovine and Webb Pierce teamed up to do that shortly after Jones released the record.
But Pride revived the song for the eighties, softening its edges a bit but preserving the pure twang of earlier recordings. It has a wonderful fiddle breakdown and is steel forward, with both instruments complementing Pride’s solid vocal performance.
Pride followed “Why Baby Why” with “More and More,” a No. 1 hit for Pierce that Pride took to the top ten. We’ll see Pride again this year, with the final No. 1 single of his career.
“Why Baby Why” gets a B+.
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