Does Fort Worth Ever Cross Your Mind
It’s hard to believe that a song as plain and unpretentious as “Does Forth Worth Ever Cross Your Mind” was a Number One hit in 1984. With little more than his voice, a simple drumbeat and a deceptively basic Sanger D. Shafer lyric, George Strait shows once again why a song’s core elements are all that really count. In the face of the ‘80s’ mania for overproduction Strait and producer Jimmy Bowen refused to add to these songs anything that doesn’t belong there, and the timelessness of tunes like “I Need Someone Like Me,” “I Should Have Watched That First Step,” and “What Did You Expect Me To Do” could have come from any decade between the ‘20s and the ‘80s. Strait can put a Bob Wills tribute like “Any Old Time” next to the romantic balladry of “You’re Dancin’ This Dance All Wrong” and pull it all together, as if we are hearing the Friday night band at the local armory, and not a world-class country performer. “The Fireman” would become on of Strait’s most beloved dance songs, but it is “The Cowboy Rides Away,” with its sweet, mournful melody, that lingers long after the album is over.