A John Prine Song Was a Number One Hit for George Strait

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Tony Maples Photography


On Tuesday, April 7, 2020, the music world and its global contingent of fans mourned the news that John Prine passed away due to complications from COVID-19. Although he was never considered a country music industry star, he was well known for writing many hits for mainstream commercial artists, including none other than George Strait.

It’s true. One of George Strait’s biggest hits was written by Prine, who had previously recorded and released it himself. Co-written with Roger Cook, Prine’s song “I Just Want to Dance With You” was released as a single by the King of Country Music on his “One Step at a Time” album, which was put out in 1998. The single made it as the Texas troubadour’s 34th number 1 on the Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart by Billboard. Prine’s own rendition came out in 1986 on the album entitled “German Afternoons.”

Video: YouTube/George Strait

Shared on the official George Strait YouTube channel, this rendition of “I Just Want to Dance With You” has received more than a half-million views. It varies little from Prine’s prior recording, and retains the same vibe and kind of instrumental arrangements of its predecessor. Its overall feeling is upbeat, making it a feel-good song Strait became synonymous with among his fans in the late ‘90s. The same can be said for those who enjoyed Prine’s work and recordings.

John Prine wrote and recorded a vast number of songs that he enjoyed playing as well as others that helped to make his counterparts in the music industry famous. In 2009, Miranda Lambert, another Texas country superstar, recorded Prine’s “That’s the Way That the World Goes ‘Round” and released it on her album entitled “Revolution.” Those who are longtime country fans, of the outlaw country genre in particular, would also recognize “You Never Even Called Me By My Name” as a David Allan Coe classic, which was co-written by Prine and Steve Goodman. By the age of 73, John Prine made a huge contribution to the arts in general, and the music industry specifically, and he will be greatly missed and mourned by not only family and friends, but the world of fans who had come to experience and appreciate his songs in their own way.