When I'm with You
|"When I'm with You"|
|Single by Sheriff|
|from the album Sheriff|
|B-side||"Crazy Without You" ('83)
"Give Me Rock 'N' Roll" ('88)
|Format||45 record, cassette single, 7" single|
|Sheriff singles chronology|
"When I'm with You" is a power ballad by Canadian arena rock band Sheriff. The song first appeared on Sheriff's self-titled debut album (the group's only album, to date), released in 1982. A top ten hit in Canada in 1983 (and a minor US hit at the same time), the song later hit number one in the United States—in 1989, four years after the band separated.
This song is also notable that it was one of the few #1 hits not to have a promotional video during the MTV era. Also the song is featured in the movie Goon.
Composition and inspiration
Sheriff's keyboardist Arnold Lanni wrote the song after meeting Valeri Brown and falling in love with her. 'I sat down, put my coffee on the piano, tinkled some ivories, and four minutes later 80 percent of the song was written. On Valentine's Day I played the song for Valerie and said, "I don't have anything, this is all I can give you right now. It's yours." Valeri loved the song; two years later she married me.'
Lanni also played the song to his bandmates in Sheriff. "The band really liked it, so we started playing it live. That was one of the last songs we recorded when we did the record. The producer said, 'Is there anything else?' I said, 'There's this song we play, it's kind of a wimpy song.' So we played it for him and he said 'Yeah, that's kind of nice.'"
"When I'm with You" was originally released as the third single off Sheriff's debut album. The song reached #8 on the RPM charts in the band's native Canada, where it was their biggest hit. In the US, it entered the Billboard Hot 100 on May 14, 1983, and peaked at #61 four weeks later. Sometime thereafter, disappointed and frustrated by their continued lack of international success, the band broke up.
In 1988, Brian Philips, Program Director at KDWB in Minneapolis began playing the song, and eventually other radio stations nationally followed suit. This encouraged Capitol Records to re-release the song as a single. On February 4, 1989, "When I'm with You" hit number one in the United States.
By that time, former Sheriff members Lanni and bassist Wolf Hassell had formed a duo named Frozen Ghost, and declined to re-form the group. Sheriff's lead vocalist Freddy Curci and guitarist Steve DeMarchi subsequently formed the band Alias and charted the following year with the number-two hit "More Than Words Can Say".
|Canadian Singles Chart||8|
|U.S. Billboard Hot 100||61|
|U.S. Billboard Hot 100||1|
|U.S. Billboard Adult Contemporary||1|
- Alias Official website
- "When I'm with You" lyrics
- Freddy Curci website
- Lyrics of this song at MetroLyrics
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|Billboard Hot 100 number-one single
February 4, 1989
"Straight Up" by Paula Abdul
"Holding On" by Steve Winwood
|Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks number-one single
February 4, 1989
"The Living Years" by Mike + The Mechanics