Alabama - "Take Me Down"
from the album Mountain Music (1982)
Billboard Hot 100 peak: #18 (four weeks)
Weeks in the top-40: 8
Today's Song of the Day is the #1 country hit "Take Me Down" by the iconic country band Alabama. Formed in the beginning of the 70s by cousins Randy Owen, Jeff Cook, and Teddy Gentry as Wildcountry, the group was signed as Alabama in the later part of the decade by independent label GRT records, and had a minor country hit with "I Wanna Be With You Tonight" in 1977. After that label went under, and after a couple of singles with another label, the band signed with RCA records, and starting with their first RCA single of 1980, "Tennessee River", every single they released save one (the #7 "Tar Top") in the 80's was a #1 Billboard country hit.
"Take Me Down" was their seventh of these 27 #1s, and was typical of their urban-country-pop sound. In fact, the song was written by two members of the pop-gone-country group Exile, who had a similar styled song go to the top of the pop charts, "Kiss You All Over". They also recorded "Take Me Down" in 1980, and it just missed the Billboard Hot 100 at #102..
Alabama's version not only made the pop top-20, but also #5 on the adult contemporary (soft-rock) list..
The song, released in the spring of 1982, was one of three #1 country hits from their fourth RCA album, Mountain Music, which has been certified with more than 5 million records sold. "Take Me Down" was their second biggest pop hit, after "Love In The First Degree" earlier that same year. They also received awards in '82 for the Academy of Country Music and the Country Music Association's Entertainer of the Year, as well as a Grammy for the title track from the album for best country group performance. They semi-retired in the early 2000s, but the cousins reunited on Brad Paisley's "Old Alabama" single and video in 2011.
Up tomorrow: Foreigner's fourth single from "4". That's a lot of (what) for.