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Gentle on My Mind

Updated on April 1, 2016

Ever Gentle John Hartford

Album Cover
Album Cover | Source

John Hartford & Gentle On My Mind

Gentle on My Mind, a song written by John Hartford, won two 1968 Grammy Awards. Hartford himself won the award for Best Folk Performance. The other award, Best Country Western Solo Vocal Performance, Male, went to Glen Campbell for his version of Hartford's song.

John Hartford is reported to have said that he was inspired to write Gentle on My Mind's poignant lyrics after seeing the film Doctor Zhivago, and that it took about fifteen minutes to write down. And in a "flash of brilliance in the form of a song, seeped into the collective psyche of a generation."

John Hartford RCA Country Legends - Add this album to your library

This album includes the award-winning 1967 hit Gentle on My Mind along with Corn Cob Blues, I'm Still Here, Front Porch , and 13 more of his classic RCA sides-all reissued for the first time!

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I heard of J. Hartford before but haven't checked his work until now. Pretty great stuff for sure. I'll be researching his music more now. Thanks for the pleasure.

— Deeringboy 2009

Gentle on My Mind By Various Artists

Campbell used Gentle on My Mind as the theme to his late-1960s TV variety show, The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour.

- Campbell's version remains the best known in the US

- Versions by Patti Page and Aretha Franklin were also Hot 100 hits in 1968 and 1969, respectively

- The version by Dean Martin reached number 2 in 1969 in the UK

- Elvis Presley recorded the song at American Sound Studios in Memphis in January 1969, and the song featured on the award winning album From Elvis in Memphis

- The version by Lucinda Williams was featured over the closing credits in the 2006 comedy movie Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby

- R.E.M.performs a cover of this song on Sounds Eclectic: The Covers Project, a covers album released by alternative radio KCRW with the participation of 15 different artists.

Source Wikipedia

Gentle On My Mind By Other Artists Video

Dean Martin

Frank Sinatra

Gentle on my Mind was a tremendous song, almost whoever sang it.

— ChrisDay 2013

Joan Baez

Gentle on My Mind Lyrics

Lyrics

Written by: John Hartford

Arranged By: Don Costa

Originally made famous by: Glen Campbell

From the Album: The Complete Reprise Studio Recordings

Label: Reprise Records

Recorded: November 12, 1968

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It's knowin' that your door is always open

And your path is free to walk

That makes me tend to leave my sleepin' bag

Rolled up and stashed behind your couch

And it's knowin' I'm not shackled

By forgotten words and bonds

And the ink stains that have dried upon some line

That keeps you in the back roads

By the rivers of my memory

That keeps you ever gentle on my mind

I

Tammy Wynette Gentle on My Mind

Gentle On MY Mind by Other Artists - Recorded by various artists

The song's popularity is better measured by the number of times it has been recorded - between 400 and 600 times.

The song remains among the most often recorded in the history of popular music, its copyright netting Hartford well over a hundred thousand dollars annually for many years. It is now in its fifth decade of popularity.

Glen Campbell

Campbell used Gentle on My Mind as the theme to his late - 1960s TV variety show, The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour.

- Campbell's version remains the best known in the US

Hartford with Glen Campbell

We Love You,

John!

The Film That Inspired the Song - Dr. Zhivago

Hartford said that he was inspired to write the song's poignant lyrics after seeing the film Doctor Zhivago, and that it took about fifteen minutes to write down.

Interesting to see the origins of the lovely song.

— CherylsArt 2011

Gentle on My Mind By John Hartford on YouTube

Hartford said that he was inspired to write the song's poignant lyrics after seeing the film Doctor Zhivago, and that it took about fifteen minutes to write down.

"I have never really understood commercial music like I've wanted to," Hartford admitted in Dorothy Horstman's book, "Sing Your Heart Out Country Boy," "and I have no idea, except for the message in that song, why it was a hit."

John Hartford

Aereo-Plain

This classic album is still much in demand by John's fans. Marc Greilsamer writes that John Hartford "attracted the best pickers in the business. Norman Blake, Tut Taylor, Vassar Clements, and Randy Scruggs accompany him on this 1971 "newgrass" gem, a spontaneous album that was recorded live in the studio without any arrangements whatsoever. Delicious instrumentals stand by novelties about sex ("Boogie") and drugs ("Holding"), and semiserious diatribes ("Tear Down the Grand Ole Opry") live next to old-time gospel harmonies ("Turn Your Radio On"). Somehow, Aereo-Plain manages to be deeply cynical and emotionally uplifting at the same time".

Sing Your Heart Out, Country Boy
Sing Your Heart Out, Country Boy

"I have never really understood commercial music like I've wanted to," Hartford admitted in Dorothy Horstman's book, "Sing Your Heart Out Country Boy," "and I have no idea, except for the message in that song, why it was a hit."

 

Sing Your Heart Out, Country Boy by Dorothy Horstman - Hardcover

"This book is a great book for lyrics to many country classics. It is arranged in topics such as "Train Songs," "Religious Songs," etc. as country music is about real life and the songs tell the story. There are stories behind the songs contributed by the songwriters or acquaintances of the writers that are worth reading as well. Too bad this is out of print and that Dorothy Horstman has passed away, but the Country Music Foundation has acquired the rights to the book and have revised it up to 1992 when the most recent edition was published. This book is essential for country music history buffs and new converts alike. Great reading." ~~Bradley Olson

What Do You Think of Gentle On My Mind? - I Want to Hear From You

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    • Deeringboy LM profile image

      Deeringboy LM 9 years ago

      I heard of J. Hartford before but haven't checked his work until now. Pretty great stuff for sure. I'll be researching his music more now. Thanks for the pleasure.

    • Deeringboy LM profile image

      Deeringboy LM 9 years ago

      Hi again, I enjoy both your lenses on John Hartford and I have lensrolled both on my lenses.

    • funwithtrains lm profile image

      funwithtrains lm 9 years ago

      Nice Lens! 5 stars and a favorite from me! Please visit my Marklin Trains lens.

    • SerenityPrayerG profile image

      SerenityPrayerG 8 years ago

      Sweet Song! Thanks for the gentle reminder! :-)

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Cool Lense! Give you 5 stars from me :)

    • FriendsTreasure1 profile image

      TwoFriendsTreasures 8 years ago from S.E. Sussex County, Delaware

      Good combination - John Hartford & Glen Campbell. Informative lens - 5 stars.

    • CherylsArt profile image

      Cheryl Paton 6 years ago from West Virginia

      Interesting to see the origins of the lovely song.

    • ChrisDay LM profile image

      ChrisDay LM 6 years ago

      Gentle on my Mind was a tremendous song, almost whoever sang it.

    • Adrien Richards profile image

      Adrien 21 months ago

      I have the record, Aereo-Plain really nice, I am into David Grisman and the like I play mandolin, etc.

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