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Thursday 20 June 2019

Retro top 10: This week in 1975

Tammy Wynette said she wrote ‘Stand By Your Man’ in 15 minutes and spent her whole life defending it
Tammy Wynette said she wrote ‘Stand By Your Man’ in 15 minutes and spent her whole life defending it

'Stand By Your Man' had been a number one country hit in the US for Tammy Wynette seven years before it rose to the top of the charts in the UK (and Ireland) in May 1975.

Wynette's signature tune, it was co-written by the singer and Billy Sherrill, a songwriter and producer who also co-wrote 'Behind Closed Doors' and 'The Most Beautiful Girl' for Charlie Rich.

'Stand By Your Man' gave Tammy Wynette worldwide fame but also brought controversy to her door.

While she said it was 'just a pretty love song', feminists in particular took issue with the lyrics which they claimed suggested woman should place herself second to man and stick by her man no matter what his indiscretions. Wynette countered that the song was in fact suggesting that women should try to overlook their husbands' shortcomings and faults if they truly love them.

Hilary Clinton added fuel to the fire on the US show '60 Minutes' in 1992 when, responding to questions about her husband's alleged affair, she said: 'You know, I'm not sitting here, some little woman, standing by my man like Tammy Wynette'.

An incensed Wynette issued a statement in which she said she resented Clinton's 'caustic remark'.

'Mrs. Clinton, you have offended every woman and man who love that song - several million in number. I believe you have offended every true country music fan and every person who has "made it on their own" with no one to take them to a White House.' Ouch!

Wynette's last TV appearance, on TNN's 'Prime Time Country' on March 9, 1998, included a performance of 'Stand By Your Man'. Through her life she had endured years of medical problems and multiple visits to hospital and she died of a blood clot to the lung on April 9, 1998, aged 55.

1 Stand By Your Man Tammy Wynette

2 Oh Boy Mud

3 Lovin' You Minnie Riperton

4 Hurt So Good Susan Cadogan

5 Let My Try Again Tammy Jones

6 I Wanna Dance Wit Choo Disco Tex and the Sex-O-Lettes

7 Only Yesterday The Carpenters

8 Honey Bobby Goldsboro

9 The Night Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons

10 Love Like You and Me Gary Glitter

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