About the song

Ah, Conway Twitty – a name synonymous with smooth baritone vocals and heartfelt country ballads. But Next in Line, released in 1968, showcases a different side of the genre legend. This song, the title track from Twitty’s album of the same name, delves into the melancholic territory of unrequited love, a theme often explored in country music, but with a unique twist.

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Next in Line isn’t a tale of fiery heartbreak or bitter resentment. Instead, it simmers with a quiet, patient kind of longing. The narrator, played with characteristic sincerity by Twitty, observes the woman he loves drowning her sorrows in music and alcohol. He knows her heartbreak stems from another man, and the lyrics paint a vivid picture of her emotional state: “See her there at the table / Watch her tear at the label / From the bottle that she just drank dry.”

This isn’t a scene of dramatic outburst; it’s a portrayal of quiet despair. The narrator doesn’t judge or try to intervene. He simply observes, his love a constant presence even in the face of rejection. The line, “Everybody knows I love her / But her mind is on another,” is delivered with a resignation that underscores the depth of his affection.

There’s a touch of selflessness in the narrator’s actions. He knows his love isn’t reciprocated, yet he remains by her side, playing her favorite songs on the jukebox, “to keep her happy, in my own kind of way.” This act of devotion, even if unacknowledged, becomes the song’s central theme. It’s a testament to a love that endures despite the odds, a quiet strength often found in the undercurrents of country music.

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Next in Line was written by Wayne Kemp and Curtis Wayne, two prolific songwriters who penned numerous hits for Twitty and other country artists. Their work often explored themes of heartbreak and longing, and Next in Line is a prime example of their ability to capture the complexities of human emotion.

The song itself was a commercial success, reaching number two on the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart in 1968 [Wikipedia, Next in Line (Conway Twitty song)]. It further cemented Twitty’s status as a country music powerhouse, proving his ability to deliver not just soaring ballads but also nuanced stories of love and loss.

So, when you listen to Next in Line, don’t expect a fiery outburst or a dramatic showdown. It’s a song about the quiet strength of unrequited love, a testament to devotion that endures despite the odds. It’s a reminder that sometimes, the most profound emotions are expressed not in grand gestures, but in the quiet acts of unwavering support.

Video

Lyrics

“Next In Line”

See her there at the table
Watch her tear at the label
From the bottle that she just drank dry
In her mind there’s a burning
It took a long time, but she’s learning
And just look at the deardrops she’s cried.

Everbody knows I love her
But her mind is on another
And just look what he’s done to her pride
And if she should change her mind
Give up the music and the wine
I’ll be standing by to be the next in line

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I know her favourite songs so well
And she’s happy, I can tell
Just as long as she can hear the juke box play
So I’ll keep playing it loud
I’ll spend every dime I have
To keep her happy, in my own kind of way

Everbody knows I love her
But her mind is on another
And just look what he’s done to her pride
And if she should change her mind
Give up the music and the wine
I’ll be standing by to be the next in line…