Buck Owens - I’ve Got a Tiger By the Tail (1965)
Buck Owens was a pioneer of the “Bakersfield sound”, a twangy California honky-tonk reaction to the string-laden, pop-chart-oriented music coming out of Nashville in the 1950s. At the same time, Owens also had full command of the tools that generate hit country songs: a clever, funny premise, an appealing hook, and a snappy delivery. This song has all three in spades, but I think it’s the last that elevates it from the rank of “excellent country tune” to “unstoppable earworm” — Buck and guitarist Don Rich’s high harmonies are so irrepressibly fun that six months after my first and only listen I found myself tapping my toe to it. And here’s a tip: When that happens, you have a good song on your hands.
Video of Buck Owens, Don Rich and the Buckaroos playing on Jimmy Dean’s show in the 1960s.