It's Sad to Belong

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"It's Sad to Belong"
Single by England Dan & John Ford Coley
from the album Dowdy Ferry Road
B-side "The Time Has Come"
Released April 1977
Genre Pop rock, soft rock
Length 2:54
Label Big Tree Records
Writer(s) Randy Goodrum
England Dan & John Ford Coley singles chronology
"Nights Are Forever Without You"
"It's Sad to Belong"
"Gone Too Far"

"It's Sad to Belong" is a song written by Randy Goodrum and performed by England Dan & John Ford Coley on their 1977 album, Dowdy Ferry Road. Called a "timeless classic",[1] it peaked at #21 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and #1 on the easy listening chart.[2] It was one of the earlier pop hits in Goodrum's career.[3]

"It's Sad to Belong" was released in May 1977[4] through Big Tree Records, with the b-side "The Time Has Come".[5] It became one of "a string of hit singles" that England Dan & John Ford Coley had in the mid-1970s.[6][7]

The song topped the adult contemporary (then called "easy listening") chart for five consecutive weeks from June 25 to July 23.[8][9] It also appeared on the top 40 "rack singles" list on June 7.[10] On December 24, it ranked #3 on Billboard's end-of-the-year easy listening chart.[11]


"It's Sad to Belong" is the second track on Dowdy Ferry Road. It is one of only two songs on the album not written by either singer.[12]

The song has been called "bittersweet".[1] Dale Van Atta of the Deseret News observed that it is "the universal divorce anthem - about the alleged monotony of monogamy" and that the duo "[reduces] it to a simple, peaceful chorus" (referring to the line, Yes, it's sad to belong to someone else when the right one comes along).[13]

The song was covered by B. J. Thomas.[10] It is still performed in concerts by the surviving member of the duo, John Ford Coley.[1]

Chart performance[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Martinez-Belen, Crispina. "MYMP's pre-Valentine show"., February 11, 2010. Retrieved 2011-01-04.
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2002). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961-2001. Record Research. p. 86. 
  3. ^ Minting, Will. "Jay Graydon & Randy Goodrum interview, October 2008"., November 1, 2008. Retrieved 2011-01-04.
  4. ^ Nite, Norm N. Rock On: The Modern Years: 1964 - Present, Volume 2 (Crowell, 1980), p. 152.
  5. ^ Koenig, John. Goldmine Records & Prices (Krause Pubns Inc, 2006).
  6. ^ "Dan Seals to perform Friday". The Sumter Daily Item, November 16, 1985, p. 128.
  7. ^ "Singer at Doniphan". The Southeast Missourian, May 28, 1986, p. 2.
  8. ^ Hyatt, Wesley (1999). The Billboard Book of #1 Adult Contemporary Hits (Billboard Publications).
  9. ^ Whitburn, Joel. The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits (Billboard Books, 2000), p. 214.
  10. ^ a b Billboard, June 18, 1977.
  11. ^ Billboard, December 24, 1977.
  12. ^ "Dowdy Ferry Road - England Dan & John Ford Coley". Retrieved 2011-01-04.
  13. ^ Van Atta, Dale. "Patented simplicity on the 'Dowdy Ferry Road'". The Deseret News, June 10, 1977, p. 20.
  14. ^ "Top RPM Adult Contemporary: Issue 3692." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. August 6, 1977.
  15. ^ a b "Top RPM Singles: Issue 3675a." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. July 30, 1977.
  16. ^ "England Dan & John Ford Coley Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot 100 for England Dan & John Ford Coley.
  17. ^ "England Dan & John Ford Coley Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Adult Contemporary for England Dan & John Ford Coley.
  18. ^ "Cash Box Top 100 Singles: Week Ending July 23, 1977". Cashbox. July 23, 1977. 
  19. ^ "The Cashbox Year-End Charts: 1977". Cashbox. December 31, 1977. 
  20. ^ Billboard, December 24, 1977.