Mickey Gilley’s Biggest Hits Ranked

Mickey Gilley, the piano-playing crooner who grew up with his cousins Jerry Lee Lewis and Reverend Jimmy Swaggart, passed away May 7 at age 86 in Branson, Mo.

Between 1968 and 1989, Gilley posted 46 entries on Hot Country Songs chart, which included 17 No. 1s among 34 top 10s. He also posted 27 entries on Top Country Albums, encompassing 10 top 10s. Two LPs hit No. 1: 1974’s Room Full of Roses and City Lights, which reached the pinnacle in 1975.

Gilley, who was born in Natchez, Miss., on March 9, 1936, hit the top of Hot Country Songs with his first of 17 leaders in June 1974, when “Room Full of Roses” led for a week. His final trip to the penthouse was also his only collaboration to hit No. 1: 1983’s “Paradise Tonight,” with Charley McClain.

Gilley was at the peak of his career in 1980 when the film Urban Cowboy was released. Much of the movie, starring John Travolta and Debra Winger and featuring Gilley, was shot at Gilley’s, the gigantic honky-tonk in Pasadena, Texas, which the singer opened in 1972. The club’s prized possession was the mechanical bull, which Travolta’s character “Bud” rode numerous times. (Sadly, the club burned down in an arson fire in 1990.)

The Urban Cowboy soundtrack remained at No. 1 on Top Country Albums for eight weeks beginning in August 1980 and peaked at No. 3 on the all-genre Top 200 in September 1980 during a 53-week run.

Also from the movie soundtrack was Gilley’s version of Sam Cooke’s “Stand by Me,” which topped Hot Country Songs. It climbed to No. 22 on the Hot 100 in August 1980, becoming Gilley’s lone hit on the all-format survey.

Gilley’s last appearance on Hot Country Songs was in 1989 when “There I Said It Again” reached No. 53 that August.

The following is a list of Mickey Gilley’s 20 biggest hits listed by rank, title, peak position and peak date.

Mickey Gilley’s Biggest Hits
1. “She’s Pulling Me Back Again,” No. 1 (1 week), 4/30/1977
2. “I Overlooked an Orchid,” No. 1 (1 week), 11/2/1974
3. “Window Up Above,” No. 1 (1 week), 6/7/1975
4. “Lonely Nights,” No. 1 (1 week),2/6/1982
5. “Paradise Tonight” with Charly McClain, No. 1 (1 week), 10/15/1983
6. “True Love Ways,” No. 1 (1 week), 7/19/1980
7. “Tears of the Lonely,” No. 3, 6/12/1982
8. “Don’t the Girls All Get Prettier at Closing Time,” No. 1 (1 week), 5/1/1976
9. “Bring It On Home to Me,” No. 1 (1 week), 8/21/1976
10. “That’s All That Matters to Me,” No. 1 (1 week), 12/20/1980
11. “A Headache Tomorrow (Or a Heartache Tonight),” No. 1 (1 week), 4/25/1981
12. “You Don’t Know Me,” No. 1 (1 week), 9/19/1981
13. “Fool for Your Love,” No. 1 (1 week), 6/25/1983
14. “Room Full of Roses,” No. 1 (1 week), 6/29/1974
15. “Stand by Me,” No. 1 (1 week), 8/9/1980
16. “Talk to Me,” No. 1 (1 week), 1/29/1983
17. “City Lights,” No. 1 (1 week), 2/1/1975
18. “Put Your Dreams Away,” No. 1 (1 week), 10/2/1982
19. “Doo-Wah Days,” No. 6, 10/25/1986
20. “You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me,” No. 2, 3/31/1984

Mickey Gilley’s Biggest BHits ranking is based on weekly performance on US weekly Hot Country Songs chart. Songs are ranked based on an inverse point system, with weeks at No. 1 earning the greatest value and weeks at lower spots earning the least. Due to changes in chart methodology over the years, eras are weighted differently to account for chart turnover rates over various periods.

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