Song written by Ralph Mooney & Charles Seals, and published in 1949. The song was recorded by Ray Price, on February 4, 1956, for the Columbia label and released on April 2, 1956. On July 28, 1956, the song arrived at number one of the US country charts, for 9 weeks in a row from July 28 to September 28, and returned to number one on November 3, for two more weeks. Crazy arms, would remain on the list of Billboard playing for almost a year. It would become the fourth greatest hit of all time in the history of country music, behind “I’m Movin ‘On” by Hank Snow (1950), “I’ll Hold You In My Heart “by Eddy Arnold (1947) and” In The Prison Now “(1955).
It was a time when the Nashville record companies abandoned the country sound, to turn towards the frenetic “rockabilly” style, Ray kept the country in his place.
But the first recording of the song is: Kenny Brown & Marilyn Kaye & The Arkansas Ramblers, was recorded in July 1955 for PEP Records and was released in early 1956.
Story behind the song:
While Ray thrilled the traditional fans at Opry, Charlie Seals worked for a much smaller audience on the west coast, Charlie played clubs at night and wrote songs for the day. He had written a couple of regional hits that had done quite well in California. One day Charlie met a friend and former playmate, Ralph Mooney. Ralph was a talented steel guitarist, but unfortunately a notorious womanizer. Mooney sadly told Seals that his wife had trapped him with another woman and had taken the first bus out of town. “Oh, these crazy arms of mine,” Ralph had moaned when he told Charlie about his problems. “If only I could control my crazy arms.” Ralph’s phrase immediately, inspired Charlie, and he thought that Ralph Mooney’s plight could be a great song, with the line of having crazy arms as a good place to start. Ralph & Money added their talents, to write the song, when they had it finished, Charlie took it to Jimmy Wakely, owner of an editorial, Wakely agreed to stay with publishing rights, but did not put much desire, and left the song in a drawer .
Meanwhile, Charlie continued with his live show, where he always sang, Crazy arms, in one of them another editor was interested in the song, Charlie told him that the rights had Jimmy Wakely, the editor asked Seals if he could recover the rights. When Charlie asked Wakely if he could get them back, Jimmy could not even find his copy of “Crazy Arms” in the office! However, Wakely verbally returned to Seals the publication rights to the song, still warning him that he was wasting his time trying to record it. What a great mistake. It became one of the great successes of country music of all time.
Kenny Brown & Marilyn Kaye & The Arkansas Ramblers 1955 (PEP)
Jerry Lee Lewis 1956 (Sun Records)
The Andrews Sisters 1956 (Capitol)
Webb Pierce 1959 (Decca)
Bob Beckham 1959 (Decca)
Warner Mack 1962 (Decca)
Marion Worth 1963 (Columbia)
Patsy Cline 1964 (Decca)
Chuck Berry 1964 (Chess Records)
Waylon Jennings 1972 (RCA Victor)
Linda Ronstadt 1972 (Capitol)
… and many more …
Ray Price – Crazy Arms Lyrics
Now blue ain’t the world for the way that I feel
And the storm’s brewing in this heart of mine
This ain’t no crazy dream I know that it’s real
You’re someone else’s love now you’re not mine
Crazy arms that reach to hold somebody new
For my yearning heart keeps saying you’re not mine
My troubled mind knows soon to another you’ll be wed
And that’s why I’m lonely all the time
So please take the treasured dreams I had for you and me
And take all the love I thought was mine
Someday my crazy arms may hold somebody new
But now I’m so lonely all the time
Crazy arms that reach…