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One of the most popular songs of the 20th century
What makes the Tennessee Waltz so beautiful?
The song is beautiful to me for its warm memories of childhood. My mother played that record, 78 rpm on shellac, and danced around holding me up high, singing along with Patti Page. But it's not just simple sentimentality that endears Tennessee Waltz to so many people.
Patti Page recorded Tennessee Waltz as the B side of a 1950 Christmas disc and since then it's been recorded more than 300 times, and won the BMI's 3,000,000 Airplay Award - the equivalent to 17.1 years of continuous playing!
In 1965, Tennessee Waltz became the fourth official song of the State of Tennessee.
The first Crossover from Country to Pop
Tennessee Waltz came from Country Music, the theme song of Pee Wee King and his Golden West Cowboys. King wrote the lyrics and they were sung by his lead vocalist Redd Stewart and first recorded in 1947.
Over 300 versions have been put down since and I've collected my six favourites here. Which one is yours?
Patti Page sings Tennessee Waltz
Miss Patti Page was the first crossover artist to take country music out of the country and onto the pop charts with the legendary Tennessee Waltz This is her 1950 recording and the first version I heard.
Patsy Cline sings Tennessee Waltz
Patsy Cline is considered one of the most influential, successful and acclaimed female vocalists of the 20th century. Posthumously, millions of her albums have sold over the past 50+ years and in 1973, ten years after her death, she became the first female solo artist inducted to the Country Music Hall of Fame.
Patsy sings Tennessee Waltz in her own heart-aching style.
Bonnie Rait and Norah Jones sing Tennessee Waltz
Norah and Bonnie with a sweet, slow version of Tennessee Waltz.
I love anything Bonnie does, and the lovely Norah Jones is a delight. These two musicians are just wonderful together!
Leonard Cohen sings Tennessee Waltz
For four decades, Leonard Cohen has been one of the most important and influential songwriters of our time. Here's his version of Tennessee Waltz, in full classic country style.
Elvis almost sings Tennessee Waltz
Elvis joking around in a recording session. It's well worth listening to just for the backing musicians.
Tom Jones sings Tennessee Waltz
Yep, there's no mistake with the cover - this is indeed Tom Jones with The Chieftains!
Tennessee Waltz on MP3
So many to choose from!
Some of the best I could find. Shawn Colvin, Anne Murray, Floyd Cramer, Sam Cooke, Cowboy Copas and of course, Patti Page. Includes an excellent version from the Appalachian Pickers
What's the best version of Tennessee Waltz?
Which one is your pick as the best?
Is there another version you prefer? Let me know.
All comments are greatly appreciated. You don't have to be a Squidoo member to leave yours.