Saturday, April 11, 2009

Sweet Dreams Of You

Sweet dreams of you
Every night I go through
Why can't I forget you and start my life anew
Instead of having sweet dreams about you

You don't love me, it's plain
I should know I'll never wear your ring
I should hate you the whole night through
Instead of having sweet dreams about you

Sweet dreams of you
Things I know can't come true
Why can't I forget the past, start loving someone new
Instead of having sweet dreams about you

Don Gibson – Sweet Dreams (buy)

Faron Young – Sweet Dreams (buy)

Patsy Cline – Sweet Dreams (buy)

The Everly Brothers – Sweet Dreams (buy)

Tommy McLain – Sweet Dreams (buy)

Elvis Costello – Sweet Dreams (buy)

A recent commenter caught me being a bit lazy with the "original" Almost Blue post. I used Patsy Cline's version of Sweet Dreams which really isn't the original, or even necessarily the best version, just the most popular. We here at STWOF like to remedy our mistakes when possible. Hence, this post about the song Sweet Dreams.

The simple, yet effective, song was first performed by its writer, Don Gibson, in 1956. That same year, Faron Young (pictured top) had a No. 2 hit with the song. I really like his honky-tonky version.

Sweet Dreams is a perfect example of how Gibson described his own writing style:
"My songs are simple, and just about all of them are about love. I write about people, not things. I never had a lot of education, and I don't feel easy with words. Most of the words to my songs are real simple. I just make them up to put to some tune on the guitar I've come up with. It's the sound of the guitar that I've always been interested in."
Patsy Cline's crossover hit version of Sweet Dreams was released posthumously in 1963, months after she was killed in an airplane crash at the age of 30. That same year, The Everly Brothers recorded a version for their album The Everly Brothers Sing Great Country Hits.

Three years later, in 1966, Tommy McLain's "swamp pop" version sold three million copies. The liner notes to Almost Blue suggest that this was the version that most directly influenced Elvis Costello's 1981 recording.

Other notable recordings of the song include Emmylou Harris (1975), Loretta Lynn (1977), and Reba McEntire (1979).

Which is your favorite version, and why? My vote goes to Faron because I love that honky-tonk feel.

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