“Houston (Means I’m One Day Closer to You)”
Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers
Written by Larry Gatlin
Radio & Records
#1 (4 weeks)
December 9 – December 30, 1983
#1 (2 weeks)
December 24 – December 31, 1983
The most surprising thing about “Houston (Means I’m One Day Closer to You)” is that it topped both charts at the end of 1983.
On the surface level, at least. The old school harmonies were tailor made for the crossover countrypolitan sound that dominated the end of the seventies, but were falling out of fashion by the time this record came around.
The signs of the times are still there, though. Under that thick layer of stacked voices, you can hear some truly fantastic instrumentation that borrows heavily from Western swing. If you just had George Strait singing by himself over the backing track, it would fit in perfectly on any of his eighties albums.
Larry Gatlin and his brothers are fine singers and you can hear how this would snap, crackle, and pop on a live stage. On record, they reach for some notes that they don’t catch, and it makes the chorus weaker than it should be. It’s really the verses and the musicianship that shine here.
The Gatlins earned six more top ten hits on the country charts, and then ran their own musical theater in Myrtle Beach. Gatlin and his brothers have continued to record for independent labels, and Gatlin himself appears regularly on radio and television on a variety of musical and political programs.
“Houston (Means I’m One Day Closer to You)” gets a B.
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