1980 in country music

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This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in the year 1980.

List of years in country music (table)


  1. "It's Like We Never Said Goodbye" by Crystal Gayle
  2. "A Lesson in Leavin'" by Dottie West
  3. "Are You on the Road to Lovin' Me Again" by Debby Boone
  4. "Beneath Still Waters" by Emmylou Harris
  5. "Two Story House" by Tammy Wynette (Duet with George Jones)
  • July 5 — George Jones' classic "He Stopped Loving Her Today" reaches #1 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles charts.
  • November 18 — The country-variety TV series, Barbara Mandrell and the Mandrell Sisters, debuts.

Country music goes Hollywood[edit]

  • Country music had a major impact on the motion picture industry throughout the year, with no less than four major box office hits released during the year:

Top hits of the year[edit]

Singles released by American artists[edit]

US CAN Single Artist
17 59 After Hours Joe Stampley
18 21 Always Patsy Cline
1 20 Are You on the Road to Lovin' Me Again Debby Boone
7 7 Baby, You're Something John Conlee
6 Back to Back Jeanne Pruett
1 1 Bar Room Buddies Merle Haggard and Clint Eastwood
18 43 Bedroom Ballad Gene Watson
1 2 Beneath Still Waters Emmylou Harris
6 9 The Best of Strangers Barbara Mandrell
7 49 Blue Heartache Gail Davies
8 4 The Blue Side Crystal Gayle
21 8 Bombed, Boozed and Busted Joe Sun
13 8 The Boxer Emmylou Harris
20 Bring It on Home Big Al Downing
9 14 Broken Trust Brenda Lee with The Oak Ridge Boys
22 14 The Champ Moe Bandy
5 27 Charlotte's Web The Statler Brothers
20 21 Cheatin' on a Cheater Loretta Lynn
7 1 Clyde Waylon Jennings
24 7 Coal Miner's Daughter Sissy Spacek
16 35 Come to My Love Cristy Lane
15 26 Couldn't Do Nothin' Right Rosanne Cash
1 1 Coward of the County Kenny Rogers
1 10 Cowboys and Clowns Ronnie Milsap
10 8 The Cowgirl and the Dandy Brenda Lee
3 6 Crackers Barbara Mandrell
14 53 Crying Stephanie Winslow
32 8 Dallas Floyd Cramer
1 4 Dancin' Cowboys The Bellamy Brothers
1 15 Do You Wanna Go to Heaven T. G. Sheppard
3 1 Don't Fall in Love with a Dreamer Kenny Rogers and Kim Carnes
17 Drinkin' and Drivin' Johnny Paycheck
1 2 Drivin' My Life Away Eddie Rabbitt
3 3 Faded Love Willie Nelson and Ray Price
14 Free to Be Lonely Again Debby Boone
2 3 Friday Night Blues John Conlee
1 7 Gone Too Far Eddie Rabbitt
2 3 Good Ole Boys Like Me Don Williams
7 16 Hard Times Lacy J. Dalton
1 2 He Stopped Loving Her Today George Jones
17 28 He Was There (When I Needed You) Tammy Wynette
17 20 He's Out of My Life Johnny Duncan with Janie Fricke
3 3 Heart of Mine The Oak Ridge Boys
4 1 Help Me Make It Through the Night Willie Nelson
7 7 Holding the Bag Moe Bandy and Joe Stampley
1 1 Honky Tonk Blues Charley Pride
1 1 I Ain't Living Long Like This Waylon Jennings
1 1 I Believe in You Don Williams
18 38 I Can See Forever in Your Eyes Reba McEntire
5 I Can't Get Enough of You Razzy Bailey
20 I Don't Want to Lose You Con Hunley
15 8 I Wish I Was Eighteen Again George Burns
1 1 I'd Love to Lay You Down Conway Twitty
1 23 I'll Be Coming Back for More T. G. Sheppard
8 8 I'll Even Love You (Better Than I Did Then) The Statler Brothers
5 25 I'm Already Blue The Kendalls
17 48 I'm Gonna Love You Tonight (In My Dreams) Johnny Duncan
2 4 I'm Not Ready Yet George Jones
6 7 I've Never Seen the Likes of You Conway Twitty
1 3 If You Ever Change Your Mind Crystal Gayle
13 62 In America Charlie Daniels
10 4 It's Hard to Be Humble Mac Davis
1 1 It's Like We Never Said Goodbye Crystal Gayle
14 35 It's Over Rex Allen, Jr.
9 It's Too Late Jeanne Pruett
5 2 It's True Love Loretta Lynn and Conway Twitty
12 8 Kaw-Liga Hank Williams, Jr.
1 2 Lady Kenny Rogers
12 39 The Last Cowboy Song Ed Bruce
13 Lay Back in the Arms of Someone Randy Barlow
13 Leavin's for Unbelievers Dottie West
1 1 Leaving Louisiana in the Broad Daylight The Oak Ridge Boys
1 23 A Lesson in Leavin' Dottie West
6 17 Let's Get It While the Getting's Good Eddy Arnold
10 15 Let's Keep it That Way Mac Davis
17 A Little Getting Used To Mickey Gilley
27 16 Long Haired Country Boy Charlie Daniels
1 18 Lookin' for Love Johnny Lee
14 57 Losing Kind of Love Lacy J. Datlon
1 1 Love Me Over Again Don Williams
4 1 Love the World Away Kenny Rogers
3 30 Lovers Live Longer The Bellamy Brothers
1 10 Loving Up a Storm Razzy Bailey
6 12 Lying Time Again Mel Tillis
2 38 Making Plans Porter Wagoner and Dolly Parton
12 Man Just Doesn't Know What a Woman Goes Through Charlie Rich
7 12 Men Charly McClain
6 1 Midnight Rider Willie Nelson
3 4 Misery and Gin Merle Haggard
2 2 Missin' You Charley Pride
5 46 Morning Comes Too Early Jim Ed Brown and Helen Cornelius
1 13 My Heart Ronnie Milsap
1 1 My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys Willie Nelson
17 My Home's in Alabama Alabama
30 11 Naked in the Rain Loretta Lynn
18 10 New York Wine and Tennessee Shine Dave & Sugar
20 11 Night Games Ray Stevens
20 9 Night Life Willie Nelson with Danny Davis and the Nashville Brass
13 22 No One Will Ever Know Gene Watson
17 16 North of the Border Johnny Rodriguez
4 3 Nothing Sure Looked Good on You Gene Watson
11 26 Numbers Bobby Bare
6 40 Oh, How I Miss You Tonight Jim Reeves and Deborah Allen
1 2 Old Flames Can't Hold a Candle to You Dolly Parton
6 58 Old Habits Hank Williams, Jr.
9 9 The Old Side of Town Tom T. Hall
1 2 On the Road Again Willie Nelson
1 10 One Day at a Time Cristy Lane
1 8 One in a Million Johnny Lee
13 One of a Kind Moe Bandy
10 Over Leon Everette
10 18 Over the Rainbow Jerry Lee Lewis
19 59 A Pair of Old Sneakers George Jones and Tammy Wynette
22 12 Pass Me By Janie Fricke
10 7 Pecos Promenade Tanya Tucker
17 31 Play Another Slow Song Johnny Duncan
5 3 Pour Me Another Tequila Eddie Rabbitt
35 13 Pregnant Again Loretta Lynn
9 5 Put It Off Until Tomorrow The Kendalls
21 18 Rainy Days and Stormy Nights Billie Jo Spears
15 Raisin' Cane in Texas Gene Watson
38 20 The Real Buddy Holly Story Sonny Curtis
20 17 Real Cowboy (You Say You're) Billy Crash Craddock
8 Save Your Heart for Me Jacky Ward
2 11 She Can't Say That Anymore John Conlee
13 60 She Just Started Liking Cheatin' Songs John Anderson
23 13 Shotgun Rider Joe Sun
7 2 Shriner's Convention Ray Stevens
13 21 The Shuffle Song Margo Smith
1 8 Smoky Mountain Rain Ronnie Milsap
6 7 Smooth Sailin' T. G. Sheppard
1 3 Stand by Me Mickey Gilley
15 9 Standing Tall Billie Jo Spears
17 41 Starting Over Tammy Wynette
1 2 Starting Over Again Dolly Parton
9 Steppin' Out Mel Tillis
1 2 Sugar Daddy The Bellamy Brothers
12 13 Sugarfoot Rag Jerry Reed
15 Sure Thing Freddie Hart
8 16 Sweet Sexy Eyes Cristy Lane
10 Take Me in Your Arms and Hold Me Jim Reeves and Deborah Allen
5 12 Take Me to Your Lovin' Place Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers Band
12 15 Taking Somebody with Me When I Fall Larry Gatlin & the Gatlin Brothers Band
11 15 Tell Ole I Ain't Here, He Better Get on Home Moe Bandy and Joe Stampley
5 25 Temporarily Yours Jeanne Pruett
1 1 Tennessee River Alabama
18 43 The Tennessee Waltz Lacy J. Dalton
9 40 Texas in My Rear View Mirror Mac Davis
6 3 That Lovin' You Feelin' Again Roy Orbison and Emmylou Harris
1 9 That's All That Matters Mickey Gilley
7 That's the Way a Cowboy Rocks and Rolls Jacky Ward
10 50 That's What I Get for Loving You Eddy Arnold
1 2 Theme from The Dukes of Hazzard (Good Ol' Boys) Waylon Jennings
18 36 There's Another Woman Joe Stampley
19 They Never Lost You Con Hunley
13 Too Old to Play Cowboy Razzy Bailey
1 1 True Love Ways Mickey Gilley
1 1 Trying to Love Two Women The Oak Ridge Boys
10 Tumbleweed Sylvia
2 1 Two Story House George Jones and Tammy Wynette
2 1 The Way I Am Merle Haggard
7 1 Wayfaring Stranger Emmylou Harris
18 15 We're Number One Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers
19 33 What'll I Tell Virginia Johnny Rodriguez
15 17 When Slim Whitman
11 15 When Two Worlds Collide Jerry Lee Lewis
1 2 Why Don't You Spend the Night Ronnie Milsap
1 3 Why Lady Why Alabama
18 23 Women Get Lonely Charly McClain
5 9 Women I've Never Had Hank Williams, Jr.
1 1 Years Barbara Mandrell
10 6 Yesterday Once More Moe Bandy
4 5 You Almost Slipped My Mind Charley Pride
9 5 You Know Just What I'd Do Loretta Lynn and Conway Twitty
19 19 You Lay a Whole Lot of Love on Me Con Hunley
8 22 (You Lift Me) Up to Heaven Reba McEntire
1 2 You Win Again Charley Pride
5 17 You'd Make an Angel Wanna Cheat The Kendalls
22 8 You're Gonna Love Yourself Charlie Rich
60 12 You're Only Lonely J. D. Souther
3 32 Your Body Is an Outlaw Mel Tillis
15 39 Your Lying Blue Eyes John Anderson
5 5 Your Old Cold Shoulder Crystal Gayle

Singles released by Canadian artists[edit]

US CAN Single Artist
10 All Her Letters Terry Carisse
10 The Ballad of Lucy Jordan Marie Bottrell
14 The Ballad of T.J.'s Dick Damron
15 Brown Eyed Girl The Good Brothers
1 But It's Cheating Family Brown
13 Casey's Last Ride Bytown Bluegrass
16 Caught in the Middle Jack Hennig
1 1 Could I Have This Dance Anne Murray
3 1 Daydream Believer Anne Murray
20 Dollars Dick Damron
4 Don't Ask the Question Canadian Zephyr
80 8 Dream Street Rose Gordon Lightfoot
8 Evangeline C-Weed Band
6 Flames of Evil Desire Marie Bottrell
1 Guess I Went Crazy Canadian Zephyr
10 Hard Times (Comin' Down Again) Carlton Showband
1 Hollywood Love Carroll Baker
4 I Think I'll Say Goodbye Eddie Eastman
15 I Wish You Could Have Turned My Head Mercey Brothers
10 I'd Rather Be in L.A. Gurney Anderson
23 10 I'm Happy Just to Dance with You Anne Murray
9 In My Eyes Glory-Anne Carriere
14 Liftin' Me Up, Lettin' Me Down Eddie Eastman
1 Love Was on Our Side Family Brown
9 4 Lucky Me Anne Murray
7 Meant to Be R. Harlan Smith and Chris Nielsen
10 My Broken Old Heart David Thompson
3 Phantom of the Opry Ronnie Prophet
20 Rideau Street Queen Wayne Rostad
18 Somebody's Woman Ralph Carlson
20 Sorry Doesn't Always Make It Right Iris Larratt
1 Sparkle in Her Eyes Terry Carisse
3 The Star Marie Bottrell
1 Still Falling in Love Carroll Baker
9 Sweet Mountain Music Laura Vinson
6 Thanks for the Dance Ralph Carlson
10 We Could Make Beautiful Music Together Terry Carisse
4 We've Got the Magic R. Harlan Smith
16 What's Forever For Cliff Edwards
7 Your Used to Be Eddie Eastman

Top new album releases[edit]

US CAN Album Artist Record Label
10 6 Cylinder 6 Cylinder RCA
1 3 9 to 5 and Odd Jobs Dolly Parton RCA
13 10th Anniversary The Statler Brothers Mercury
6 All for the Love of a Song Carroll Baker RCA
24 American Son Levon Helm MCA
2 1 Anne Murray's Greatest Hits Anne Murray Capitol
5 7 Any Which Way You Can (Soundtrack) Various Artists Warner Bros.
14 Ask Me to Dance Cristy Lane United Artists
8 Back to the Barrooms Merle Haggard MCA
12 Back to the Sod Carlton Showband RCA
18 Best Country Duets Various Artists Epic
57 21 The Best of Jerry Jeff Walker Jerry Jeff Walker MCA
18 Best of the Family Brown Family Brown RCA
11 Best of the Good Brothers The Good Brothers RCA
20 Blue Pearl Earl Thomas Conley Sunbird
10 Bronco Billy (Soundtrack) Various Artists Elektra
57 6 The Champ Moe Bandy Columbia
2 1 Coal Miner's Daughter (Soundtrack) Various Artists MCA
8 Come with Me Nana Mouskouri Grand
7 2 A Country Collection Anne Murray Capitol
16 Crying Stephanie Winslow Warner Bros./Curb
14 Danny Davis & Willie Nelson
with the Nashville Brass
Danny Davis & The Nashville Brass
& Willie Nelson
7 1 Dolly, Dolly, Dolly Dolly Parton RCA
21 4 Down & Dirty Bobby Bare Columbia
58 1 Dream Street Rose Gordon Lightfoot Warner Bros.
47 17 Drunk & Crazy Bobby Bare Columbia
22 Ed Bruce Ed Bruce MCA
9 Eddie Eastman Eddie Eastman Columbia
8 2 Elvis Aron Presley Elvis Presley RCA
14 Encore Mickey Gilley Epic
18 The Entertainer Artie MacLaren Broadland
16 11 Friday Night Blues John Conlee MCA
5 9 Full Moon Charlie Daniels Epic
1 1 Gideon Kenny Rogers United Artists
22 Greatest Hits Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers Columbia
1 10 Greatest Hits Ronnie Milsap RCA
5 13 Greatest Hits The Oak Ridge Boys MCA
1 2 Greatest Hits Kenny Rogers Liberty
18 Gypsy Johnny Rodriguez Epic
4 7 Habits Old and New Hank Williams, Jr. Elektra/Curb
18 Hard Times Lacy J. Dalton Columbia
10 3 Heart & Soul Conway Twitty MCA
11 13 Help Yourself Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers Columbia
1 4 Honeysuckle Rose Willie Nelson Columbia
1 5 Horizon Eddie Rabbitt Elektra
7 I Am What I Am George Jones Epic
2 3 I Believe in You Don Williams MCA
12 I Wish I Was Eighteen Again George Burns Mercury
18 Into a Mystery Murray McLauchlan True North
22 Iris Larratt Iris Larratt RCA
3 It's Hard to Be Humble Mac Davis Casablanca
23 King of the Newfies Michael T. Wall Boot
11 Lacy J. Dalton Lacy J. Dalton Columbia
4 Live The Good Brothers Solid Gold
8 6 Lookin' for Love Johnny Lee Asylum
17 Lookin' Good Loretta Lynn MCA
24 5 Loretta Loretta Lynn MCA
17 Love Has No Reason Debby Boone Warner Bros./Curb
6 12 Love Is Fair Barbara Mandrell MCA
24 M-M-Mel Live Mel Tillis MCA
12 Make a Little Magic Nitty Gritty Dirt Band Liberty
3 Milsap Magic Ronnie Milsap RCA
1 1 Music Man Waylon Jennings RCA
3 1 My Home's in Alabama Alabama RCA
9 Porter & Dolly Porter Wagoner & Dolly Parton RCA
12 Razzy Razzy Bailey RCA
12 16 Rest Your Love on Me Conway Twitty MCA
23 Rockabilly Blues Johnny Cash Columbia
2 2 Roses in the Snow Emmylou Harris Warner Bros.
1 The Rovers The Rovers Attic
3 1 San Antonio Rose Willie Nelson & Ray Price Columbia
20 She Don't Like the Highway Dale Russell Sunshine
4 Shriner's Convention Ray Stevens RCA
10 11 Smokey and the Bandit 2 (Soundtrack) Various Artists MCA
19 Smooth Sailin' T. G. Sheppard Warner Bros./Curb
15 1 Somebody's Waiting Anne Murray Capitol
25 24 Songs I Love to Sing Slim Whitman Cleveland Int'l.
18 Sons of the Sun The Bellamy Brothers Warner Bros./Curb
22 Southern Rain Mel Tillis Elektra
3 The Star Marie Bottrell MBS
12 Texas in My Rear View Mirror Mac Davis Casablanca
8 That's All That Matters to Me Mickey Gilley Epic
1 There's a Little Bit of Hank in Me Charley Pride RCA
6 These Days Crystal Gayle Columbia
10 1 Together The Oak Ridge Boys MCA
22 True Feelings Sonny Sinclair Rural Root
1 2 Urban Cowboy (Soundtrack) Various Artists Asylum
16 The Way I Am Merle Haggard MCA
13 We Could Make Beautiful Music Together Terry Carisse MBS
5 With Love Marty Robbins Columbia
9 You Can Get Crazy The Bellamy Brothers Warner Bros./Curb
25 Your Body Is an Outlaw Mel Tillis Elektra
2 Zephyr Canadian Zephyr RCA

Other top albums[edit]

US CAN Album Artist Record Label
60 After Hours Joe Stampley Epic
27 Always Patsy Cline MCA
28 Autograph John Denver RCA
43 The Best of Chet on the Road — Live Chet Atkins RCA
34 The Best of the Kendalls The Kendalls Ovation
64 But What Will the Neighbors Think Rodney Crowell Warner Bros.
49 Cactus and a Rose Gary Stewart RCA
71 Changes Billy "Crash" Craddock Capitol
47 Christmas with Slim Whitman Slim Whitman Cleveland Int'l.
29 Dallas Floyd Cramer RCA
51 Don't It Break Your Heart Con Hunley Warner Bros.
45 Double Trouble George Jones & Johnny Paycheck Epic
41 Dreamlovers Tanya Tucker MCA
37 Even Cowgirls Get the Blues Lynn Anderson Columbia
55 Eyes Eddy Raven Dimension
26 Family Bible Willie Nelson MCA
37 Favorites Crystal Gayle United Artists
44 Following the Feeling Moe Bandy Columbia
59 Greatest Country Hits of the 70's Various Artists Columbia
61 I Don't Want to Lose Leon Everette Orlando
29 I Don't Want to Lose You Con Hunley Warner Bros.
27 I'll Be There Gail Davies Warner Bros.
28 I'll Need Someone to Hold Me When I Cry Janie Fricke Columbia
66 I've Got Something to Say David Allan Coe Columbia
61 In My Dreams Johnny Duncan Columbia
56 Jerry Reed Sings Jim Croce Jerry Reed RCA
61 John Anderson John Anderson Warner Bros.
35 Killer Country Jerry Lee Lewis Elektra
26 A Legend and His Lady Eddy Arnold RCA
59 Love So Many Ways Ronnie McDowell Epic
61 Many Moods of Mel Mel Street Sunbird
48 New York Town Johnny Paycheck Epic
47 New York Wine Tennessee Shine Dave Rowland & Sugar RCA
45 No One Will Ever Know Gene Watson Capitol
69 Oklahoma Rose Rex Allen, Jr. Warner Bros.
52 Once a Drifter Charlie Rich Elektra
35 One Man, One Woman Jim Ed Brown & Helen Cornelius RCA
37 Only Lonely Sometimes Tammy Wynette Epic
70 Standing Tall Billie Jo Spears United Artists
52 A Sure Thing Freddie Hart Sunbird
30 Take Me Back Brenda Lee MCA
43 Texas Bound and Flyin' Jerry Reed RCA
56 There's Always Me Jim Reeves RCA
26 Together Again George Jones & Tammy Wynette Epic
32 When Two Worlds Collide Jerry Lee Lewis Elektra
31 Where Did the Money Go? Hoyt Axton Jeremiah
28 Who's Cheatin' Who Charly McClain Epic
73 Women Get Lonely Charly McClain Epic

On television[edit]

Regular series[edit]




Country Music Hall of Fame Inductees[edit]

Major awards[edit]

Grammy Awards[edit]

Juno Awards[edit]

Academy of Country Music[edit]

Country Music Association[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Kingsbury, Paul, "The Grand Ole Opry: History of Country Music. 70 Years of the Songs, the Stars and the Stories," Villard Books, Random House; Opryland USA, 1995
  • Kingsbury, Paul, "Vinyl Hayride: Country Music Album Covers 1947-1989," Country Music Foundation, 2003 (ISBN 0-8118-3572-3)
  • Millard, Bob, "Country Music: 70 Years of America's Favorite Music," HarperCollins, New York, 1993 (ISBN 0-06-273244-7)
  • Whitburn, Joel, "Top Country Songs 1944-2005 - 6th Edition." 2005.


Other links[edit]

External links[edit]