Press Release via AS Written, March 2022
DONIE O PUTS HIS STAMP ON ‘STRAIT’-UP COUNTRY CLASSIC
Tipperary troubadour DONIE O has picked a ‘Strait’-up country classic for his first release of 2022. And no, that’s not a typo, just in case you were wondering!
It is, of course, a reference to one of country music’s all-time greats, the peerless Texan George Strait. The ‘King of Country’ has had many hits over the course of a glittering and inspirational career that stretches all the way back to the 70’s, including more than forty #1s. And yet, it’s a song that peaked at #4 in 1983 that has become one of his signature tunes, and now…AMARILLO BY MORNING is Donie O‘s next single, too!
“There’s just something about those opening lines,”remarks Donie O, “that really hit home. ‘Amarillo by mornin’/ Up from San Antone / Everything that I got / Is just what I’ve got on.’ It’s a song about a rodeo-rider on his way from San Antone to Amarillo where his next competition is. I’ve always had a great love of horses myself, and I owned two in particular that I’ll always have the fondest memories of, Buddy and Rex. I never tried my hand at rodeo, mind you! But I think it’s the fact that in this song, he’s on the road at night, that’s what makes it resonate with so many musicians as well.”
“The life of a rodeo-rider and a musician, they’re not so different in a lot of ways”, observes Donie O, continuing, “One always has another ride to get to in another town, and the other always has another gig calling. One always hopes that there’s a pay-day coming that makes the broken bones and scars that were picked up along the way all worth it. And the other always has the hope that the next single is going to be the one that might change everything as well.”
“And”, adds Donie O with a laugh, “we pick up our own fair share of scars along the way in the music business as well!”
Amarillo By Morning will become the fourth single taken from Donie O’s highly anticipated second album which, all going well, will be released later this year. It follows 2020’s Picture Of You, and last year’s Early Mornin’ Rain, and Back In ’68. While remaining true to the spirit of Strait’s Blake Mevis produced recording on the Strait From The Heart long-player, Amarillo By Morning – with top producer Peter Maher once again at the helm – carries the by now distinctive Donie O sound.
And, as Donie O discovered while researching the song’s history, Amarillo By Morning is actually closely tied to his career already, thanks to one of the song’s writers, Terry Stafford…
“That’s right, and this was a lovely little coincidence to just happen on. ‘Amarillo By Morning’ was written by two gentlemen, Terry Stafford and Paul Fraser. And as it turns out, the former of the two, Terry Stafford, actually recorded it for an album of his called ‘Say, Has Anybody Seen My Sweet Gypsy Rose’ back in 1973. That album’s title track was first released in June of 1973, as an A-Side, as they were back then. But because ‘Amarillo By Morning’ became so popular, it was released in October of that same year, as an A-Side, and – would you believe it – with ‘Say, Has Anybody Seen My Sweet Gypsy Rose’ as its B-Side!”
“And the connection here,” reveals Donie O, “is that the song ‘Say, Has Anybody Seen My Sweet Gypsy Rose’ was part of my ‘Yellow Ribbon Medley’, the first single from my own debut album, ‘Dreaming My Dreams’, a couple of years ago.”
Amarillo By Morning was also covered by the late country star and rodeo champion Chris LeDoux, on his 1975 collection Life As A Rodeo Man. It was also ranked 12th Greatest Country Song of All Time by Country Music Television (CMT) in 2004.
~ AMARILLO BY MORNING, the NEW single from DONIE O, is now available to request from radio stations nationwide, and will be available to stream on all platforms from Friday, March 11th.