Her Duet Partners
Once in an interview with the Shreveport Times, Marie Osmond admonished the interviewer by telling him, “Please remember, I don’t do duets all the time”. That is the truth but a good part of her chart success had been with duets. Once “Paper Roses” established her in 1973, she racked up a pair of Top Ten duets with her brother Donny.
After she disappeared from the national music scene for over a decade, Osmond returned to the charts in 1985 with a duet with Dan Seals. “Meet Me In Montana” vaulted all the way to number one. A year later, Osmond was back in the studio working with Paul Davis on “You’re Still New To Me”.
Davis had re-established his name as a songwriter with “Meet Me In Montana”. He first appeared on Billboard’s country chart in 1975. He was the performer of “Ride ‘Em Cowboy”. Several other notable pop entries followed with “Cool Night”, “I Go Crazy” and “’65 Love Affair”. Then it was a new home in Nashville for Davis, who began to establish himself as a composer of country songs.
The Hit for Davis and Osmond
The song “You’re Still New To Me” was Paul’s first appearance as a featured vocalist on a number one country single. However, it was not his last. He also joined Tanya Tucker and Paul Overstreet on 1988’s “I Won’t Take Less Than Your Love”.
Initially, Davis wrote and demoed “You’re Still New To Me” as a solo artist. However, after he pitched it to Marie Osmond, the song quickly developed into a duet idea. Her producer Paul Worley says the thought was to have Dan Seals reunite with her to create a follow-up to the previous year’s chart-topper “Meet Me In Montana”. But, it wasn’t meant to be.
Dan Seals had two reasons for declining the proposal. He didn’t tour with a female singer on the road, that’s why he wouldn’t be able to perform the song live. In addition, he had an album of his own on the market. He didn’t want to take a risk that a duet would dent the sales of a potential solo single.
The song’s composer, Paul Davis was substituted for Dan Seals and the result was magical. On July 30, 1986, Davis was shot and seriously wounded during a robbery attempt in a parking lot on Nashville’s Music Row. As he recovered in the hospital, “You’re Still New To Me” reached number one in its 13th week on November 22, 1986.
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