“Crazy“ is a ballad composed by Willie Nelson….which has been recorded by several artists, most notably by Patsy Cline, whose version was a # 2 country hit in 1962. Partly due to the genre-blending nature of the song….it has been covered by dozens of artists in several genres over the years….nevertheless, the song remains inextricably linked with Cline….as Nelson’s own version appears on his 1962 debut album …And Then I Wrote.
With some help from a friend named Oliver English….Shotgun Willie wrote the song in early 1961….at which time he was a journeyman singer-songwriter….who had written several hits for other artists…. but had not yet had a significant recording of his own. Nelson originally wrote the song for country singer Billy Walker….who turned it down for the same reason Roy Drusky turned down “I Fall to Pieces” the previous year….that it was “a girl’s song”…..however, the song’s eventual success helped launch Nelson as a performer as well as a songwriter.
Musically the song is a jazz-pop ballad with country overtones and a complex melody….as the lyrics describe the singer’s state of bemusement at the singer’s own helpless love for the object of his affection. Interviewed for the Ken Burns 2019 American PBS TV miniseries Country Music, Nelson says he originally titled the song “Stupid”….but changed it after playing it at Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge and getting fan reaction.
In this video seen herewith….Willie Nelson and The Family Band sing one of The Red Headed Stranger‘s most famous songs ever….“Crazy”….while being live on stage at Austin City Limits in 1981….as this rendition is well worth the price of admission here at ImaSportsphile.