Mark McGuinn | Photo credit: pandora.com

Mark McGuinn was among the several singers who didn’t start with country music but whose first shot at it was a smash success. Ray Charles, for instance, could be cited as a great example. Charles found his niche in R&B and gospel music but after experimenting with country music, the singer found that he could fit in both musical genres. Accordingly, his first-ever country cover I Can’t Stop Loving You” took the music industry by storm after topping more than one music chart in the early 1960s. In 2001, McGuinn duplicated Charles’ success after shifting to country music format and instantly earn his first Top 10 hit with the single “Mrs. Steven Rudy.”

Details of the Song

Mark McGuinn co-wrote the song “Mrs. Steven Rudy” with Shane Decker.  The North Carolina native McGuinn didn’t initially consider to release the song as his debut single. “That’s a Plan” was supposed to be the one. However, upon hearing a disc jockey play “Mrs. Steven Rudy” at KPLX in Texas, McGuinn decided to make it his debut record instead. Hence, the song was released as the lead single on his self-titled debut album in January 2001. Instantly, the song peaked at No. 6 on the country music chart giving McGuinn his first Top 10 country hit. It eventually became his highest-peaking country record and his only Top 20 single on the country charts.

Also, in the mid-2001, “Mrs. Steven Rudy” remained for five consecutive weeks as the highest-selling hit on the country single sales chart. In addition, the song was a minor pop hit landing at No. 44 on Billboard Hot 100. That made it the singer’s only single to peak on the pop chart. What’s more interesting about the song was the significant event history it made. Accordingly, “Mrs. Steven Rudy” broke an over 40-year record for a new artist on an independent label to enter the chart’s Top 10. Moreover, the song propelled McGuinn’s first shot at country music format. His primary musical orientation was jazz.

The Artist

After suffering from a knee injury, McGuinn gave up his career as a professional soccer player. In 1994, he moved to Nashville, Tennessee to cultivate his skills in music. He started playing trumpet in a jazz band. In 2001, an emerging Nashville independent label called VFR Records gave McGuinn a shot in country music. Thanks to his alternative look and original sound which helped him earn a special niche in this music genre. Under the said record, McGuinn released his first album that spawned the highest-selling record “Mrs. Steven Rudy.” Watch the song’s official music video below.

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