“Goodbye Time” is a song popularized by American country music singer Conway Twitty. Released in February 1988, it was a single for the album Still in Your Dreams. The song reached number 7 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. The authors of the song are James Dean Hicks and Roger Murrah. Twitty’s version features Vince Gill on background vocals.
In 2004, another country music singer covered the song. Blake Shelton made his version for his album Blake Shelton’s Barn & Grill. Issued in early 2005, “Goodbye Time” was that album’s third single. In mid-2005, it became the fourth Top Ten hit of Shelton’s career. His version peaked at number 10 on the US Billboard country charts and number 73 on the Billboard Hot 100.
Background and Writing
James Dean Hicks and Roger Murrah got their inspiration for the lyrics of “Goodbye Time” during Hicks’s brother’s divorce. According to Hicks, his brother was “holding on to something that was already gone”. Because of this, it gave Hicks and Murrah the idea to write the song. Murrah pointed out that the two “just started playing music and singing lyrics”, and the song came together.
“Goodbye Time” is a heartbreaking song about a man trying to make his last effort to save their relationship. However, it seems that his lover is not interested. Eventually, he realizes that no matter how much he loves the person, he cannot force her to stay. In the end, his efforts are not reciprocated and choose to say goodbye even though he loves her still.
The songwriters initially introduced the song to Reba McEntire. However, McEntire was going through a divorce herself. She felt the song will only make her vulnerable as the lyrics are similar what her ex-husband had told her when they separated. The song was then pitched to Conway Twitty who recorded it.