Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Reconsider Me

Co-written and first recorded (as a demo) by Margaret Lewis (1965, released 1995).
Hit versions by Johnny Adams (US #28/R&B #8 1969), Ray Pillow (C&W #38 1969), John Wesley Ryles (#39 1971), Narvel Felts (US #67/C&W #2 1975).

From the wiki: “‘Reconsider Me’ is a Country/Soul ballad written by Margaret Lewis and Mira Smith, and first recorded as a demo by Lewis in 1965. It was finally released in 1995 on the Ace Records compilation album Shreveport Stomp – Ram Records, Vol. 1.

“Lewis first came to public notice in the late 1950s as a performer on the Louisiana Hayride radio program, where she also met Smith, a local musician who happened to own her own record label – Ram Records – one of the first women in the recording industry to do so. After Ram closed down in the early 1960s, Lewis and Smith concentrated on songwriting, eventually moving to Nashville and signing with noted producer Shelby Singleton as songwriters for his SSS International and Plantation Records labels. Between them, Lewis and Smith composed more than 100 songs, including ‘Mountain of Love’ (David Houston), ‘I Almost Called Your Name’ (Margaret Whiting), ‘The Girl Most Likely’ (Jeannie C. Riley), and their signature success,’Reconsider Me’ (Johnny Adams).

“Johnny Adams had been signed to SSS International less than a year when Singleton brought ‘Reconsider Me’ to his attention, with Singleton producing the resulting single in 1969 by mixing in a little bit Fats Domino, a dash of Buck Owens, and a pinch of Slim Whitman to take advantage of Adams’ multi-octave range and swooping, soaring falsetto. ‘Reconsider Me’ became the biggest hit of Adams’ career, and arguably the most successful arrangement of any charting version, peaking at #8 on the R&B chart before crossing over to the Billboard Hot 100 where it peaked nationally at #28.

“Ray Pillow covered ‘Reconsider Me’ in 1969, hitting #38 on the Country Singles chart. In 1971, John Wesley Ryles’ cover peaked at #39 on the Country Singles chart.

“The highest Country Singles charting recording was released by country-rockabilly artist Narvel Felts, peaking at #2 in 1975 on the Billboard Country Singles chart and charting #67 on the Billboard Hot 100.”

Johnny Adams, “Reconsider Me” (1969):

Ray Pillow, “Reconsider Me” (1969):

John Wesley Ryles, “Reconsider Me” (1971):

Narvel Felts, “Reconsider Me” (1975):

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