“TNT” by Tanya Tucker (1978)
Release Date: November 1978
Produced by Jeff Goldstein
Genre: Country, Country Rock, Rock, Pop
Chart Positions: #54 (US), #52 (Canada), #2 (US Country, Canada Country)
Certifications: Gold (US, Canada)
Awards: Nominated for the “Best Female Rock Performance” Grammy Award (Donna Summer won the award that year)
Singles and Chart Positions: “Texas (When I Die)” #3 (Canada Country), #5 (US Country), “I’m The Singer, You’re The Song #6 (Canada Country), #18 (US Country), #25 (Canada Adult Contemporary)
Singles Certifications: N/A
Other Charting Tracks: “Not Fade Away” #70 (US)
Best Tracks: “Not Fade Away,” “Lover Goodbye,” “Angel From Montgomery,” “Heartbreak Hotel,” “Bown Eyed Handsome Man,” “Texas (When I Die)”
“TNT” was Tanya Tucker’s 9th studio album and was her first to be certified Gold in both the US and Canada. The album also received a Grammy nomination in the category of "Best Female Rock Performance." This was Tanya's third of 10 Grammy nominations. She has yet to win a Grammy.
With “TNT” Tucker made a bold departure from her classic country music style to do a more rock-flavored album – but for good measure kept a slight hint of that country there for her longtime fans. The departure proved to be extremely successful for Tucker as the album is her second highest charting on the US Country chart and her highest charting on the Canadian Country chart. The album was also her highest charting on the US Billboard Top 200 albums chart reaching #54. Only 1991’s “What Do I Do With Me” and 1992’s “Can’t Run From Yourself” have charted higher reaching #48 and #51 respectively. IN Canada “TNT” is Tucker’s highest charting album on the pop charts reaching #52. It was also her first album to make it onto the Canadian Country charts.
Because of the success of “TNT” Tucker followed the album with 1979’s “Tear Me Apart,” another rock-influenced album but captured much less success and by 1980 returned to her country music roots.
Featuring a playful somewhat flirtatious exuberant attitude from Tanya, "TNT was in many ways her coming of age album. She had just turned 20 a month before it's release and was ready to prove she was more than just a cute country music sweetheart.
The album opens with Phil Everly’s synth drum rocker “Lover Goodbye” and sets the mood for the album. Her remake of John Prine’s “Angel From Montgomery” is a beautiful southern rock ballad. Prine wrote and recorded this song for his 1971 debut album “John Prine.” Seals and Crofts helped on backing vocals on the ballad “The River and The Wind.”
The album’s first single “Texas (When I Die)” was the only true country number on the album. The song peaked at #5 on the US country chart and with time has become one of Tucker’s signature songs.
Tucker’s rendition of Buddy Holly’s “Not Fade Away” is a real scorching treat. The song was released as the b-side to “Texas (When I Die).” Receiving a fair amount of radio airplay and fan requests it ended up charting on Billboard’s Top 100 Singles chart reaching #70, making it the third highest charting pop single of her career.
Not Fade Away (1978)
Easily one of the album highlights is her rockin’ rendition of Elvis Presley’s “Heartbreak Hotel,” why they did not release this as a single is a mystery to me. Tucker puts in a flavorful rockabilly rendition of Chuck Berry’s “Brown Eyed Handsome Man.” The song was originally released on Chuck Berry’s 1957 debut album “After School Session” and was used as the b-side to his 1956 single “Too Much Monkey Business.”
Often "TNT" sounds as if Tanya's aim was to crack the AOR radio format and would have done well alongside the queens of AOR such as Pat Benatar, Linda Ronstadt and Anne & Nancy Wilson (Heart).
TANYA TUCKER (1978)