1969 SONG OF THE DAY- ‘RUBY, DON’T TAKE YOUR LOVE TO TOWN”- KENNY ROGERS AND THE FIRST EDITION

Kenny Rogers & the First Edition - Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town.jpg

1969 Song of the Day is “Ruby, Don’t Take Your Love To Town” by Kenny Rogers and The First Edition. If I knew this- I had forgotten it- the song was written by Mel Tillis about a paralyzed veteran of a what has to be assumed the Vietnam War- although it is never said in the song. The song was first done by the great Waylon Jennings in 1966 and then was a #9 country hit for Johnny Darrell in 1967. In 1969 Kenny Rogers wanted to take his group The First Edition more into a country sound and they recorded “Ruby” on one take with Rogers singing lead. It was released as a single and went to #6 on the Billboard Hot 100 but only #39 on the country singles chart. Rogers and The First Edition would have a couple more hits before breaking up and then as we all know Rogers reinvented himself as a country singer-and went on to great success in the late 70’s-early 80’s. The video- Kenny Rogers before the gray hair and all the plastic surgeries. Never a fan but this isn’t a bad tune.  Neither is Kenny Rogers and The First Editions biggest hit from 1968- Just Dropped In To See What My Condition My Condition Was In- which went to #5.

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14 responses to “1969 SONG OF THE DAY- ‘RUBY, DON’T TAKE YOUR LOVE TO TOWN”- KENNY ROGERS AND THE FIRST EDITION

  1. Yes! Song of the Day! ❤ No idea Mel Tillis wrote it — he had a string of hits himself at one point — and that so many others covered it. KR is the only one I've heard do it.

  2. Wow. That was a cool video seeing him playing the bass. And, when he re-invented himself, he must have started wearing contacts. He looked positively stoned, playing that bass and squinting thru those thick glasses.

    • You know you are right he didn’t look quite right did he? Interesting how he did reinvent himself- I remember in the late 70’s hearing about his earlier career and thinking Kenny Rogers did a song called Just Checked In To See What Condition My Condition Was In? No way…

    • That video showcases a completely different version of him. He was definitely skilled in that bass. His pop-country persona was another man.

      The bass-playing Rogers looks more interesting. And, I want that girl’s white boots!

    • I remember sometime in the last 70’s an article basically accusing him of being a sell out when he ‘turned country’ with that new act of his. Obviously the earlier act had ran its course as far as commercial appeal.. I was never a fan of the country Kenny- but Ruby and the earlier hit were good.

    • He definitely went the ‘mushy music, sex appeal’ route. It made him rich. Then, he had surgery & sexy Kenny was GONE.

      But, he is still rich. Money & fame means more to some than quality.

    • I think Kenny would have done anything for success- yes the money and fame are there but he has to regret those surgeries. He doesn’t quite look as bad as Burt did but–he’s in the discussion.

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