December 14

“Friends in Low Places” by Garth Brooks

“Friends in Low Places” is a song by Garth Brooks. Made largely famous by the country music artist, it was released in August 1990. This was the first single from his album No Fences. The song spent a month long at the number one spot on the Hot Country Songs. To add, “Friends in Low Places” won both the Academy of Country Music and Country Music Association awards for 1990 Single of the Year.

Songwriters Dewayne Blackwell and Earl Bud Lee wrote the lyrics of “Friends in Low Places” in 1989. The two songwriters gave the song to Brooks as a demo record. This happened soon before the release of his self-titled first album—a time when he was unknown.

The Conception of “Friends in Low Places”

Somewhere in Nashville in 1989, the concept of the “Friends in Low Places” started with two songwriters and a tad of a problem. Dewayne and Earl were having a great time when all of a sudden they realized they out-drank their wallets.

Not having enough money to pay for their bill, Lee said to Blackwell “Don’t worry, I’ve got friends in low places”.

At that bar, Blackwell referred to a friend who worked there as a cook. On the other hand, they knew that line would make a fantastic song. True enough, they were right!

Having only paper napkins and pens, they composed the song. To make it more interesting, Guitarist Jim Garver added a name of the bar in the song. “The Oasis” was the bar, an establishment in his hometown of Concordia, Kansas.

Having too many ideas about the song, they set it aside. In short, it was not completed. A few months later, the composers were at a Nashville party.  A thought hit them once again in regards to their original “low places” idea. It was totally the opposite of the fancy party they were at, against the ordinary bar the original line was written in.

Falling in love with the song, Brooks recorded the official version the following year. And the rest was history.


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