Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Tagged: Roger Miller

Lovin’ Her Was Easier (Than Anything I’ll Ever Do Again)

Written and first recorded by Kris Kristofferson (US #26/MOR #4 1971).
Other hit versions by Roger Miller (C&W #28 1971), Tompall & The Glaser Brothers (C&W #2 1981).

From the wiki: “Lovin’ Her Was Easier (Than Anything I’ll Ever Do Again)” is a song written and recorded by Kris Kristofferson for his 1971 album The Silver Tongued Devil and I. It was also released by Roger Miller, who included it on his album The Best of Roger Miller and released it as a single in July 1971. Ten years later, it was recorded by Tompall & the Glaser Brothers for the album Lovin’ Her Was Easier. Their single charted Top 5 on the C&W Singles chart. In 1990, Hank Snow asked the brothers to perform at his tribute show so they reunited for this one night. It was the first time they had performed together as a group in over five years and the last time they would ever again appear on stage together.”

Little Green Apples

Originally recorded by Roger Miller (US #39/C&W #6/UK #19 1968).
Other hit versions by Patti Page (US #96/MOR #11 1968), O.C. Smith (US #2/R&B #2 1968).

From the wiki: “Bobby Russell (‘Honey’) wrote ‘Little Green Apples’ for Roger Miller to record and Miller made the first recording of the song on January 24, 1968 in a session at the Columbia Recording Studio, Nashville. According to Buzz Cason, Russell wrote both the ‘Little Green Apples’ and ‘Honey’ as ‘an experiment in composing – anticipating a potential market for true-to-life story songs … with more ‘meat’ in the lyrics [than was] standard’ for current hits.

“Released as the lead single from A Tender Look at Love, ‘Little Green Apples”‘afforded Miller his final Top Ten C&W hit at #6 and also his final Top 40 crossover reaching #39 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Me and Bobby McGee

First recorded by Roger Miller (C&W #12 1969).
Hit versions by Gordon Lightfoot (US #13/CAN #1 1970), Janis Joplin (US #1 1971).

From the wiki: “Roger Miller was the first artist to have a hit with ‘Me and Bobby McGee’, peaking with it at #12 on the US country chart in 1969. Gordon Lightfoot’s version hit #13 on the US pop chart and #1 country in his native Canada in 1970, and was also a Top 10 hit in South Africa in 1971.

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