Diesel + Diction = Radio Hit

One of Zero to 180’s earliest pieces from 2013 makes light of Hank Thompson‘s famously well-enunciated vocals, as featured on “Squaws Along the Yukon” – a Capitol A-side from 1958.  Hank, whose recording career spanned five decades, would wax a classic piece of toe-tapping truck-driving country in 1971 with “I’ve Come Awful Close“:

“I’ve Come Awful Close”     Hank Thompson     1971

“I’ve Come Awful Close” would reach #27 in Billboard’s Country charts for the week of Christmas, 1971.  Billboard already had the song in its line of sight, having identified it the previous month as a “Spotlight Single:  Top 20 Country” (i.e., “spotlights predicted to reach the top 20 of the Hot Country Singles Chart”) in its November 13, 1971 edition:

“Thompson follows his ‘Mark of a Heel‘ hit with this easy beat material (2:49) that will continue his string of Top 20 country singles.  Flip ‘Teardrop on the Rocks’ (2:39).”

Hank Thompson 45 from 1971“I’ve Come Awful Close” is a 45-only track that would be included on Hank’s 1971 2-LP retrospective 25th Anniversary Album, as well as following year’s Greatest Hits Vol. 1.  Written by Ann J. Morton, the song would chart as high as #11 in the US (#19 in Canada) and spend a total of 14 weeks on the charts..