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mel street

mel street

Ten Hidden Gems: Country Song Hit # 1, "Borrowed Angel" (Mel Street)

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Ten Hidden Gems: Country Music Songs ~ No. 1, "Borrowed Angel" (artist, Mel Street) This is part 1 of a ten part series featuring songs that had the potential to be No. 1. Mel Street came into prominence in 1972 with several producers and songwriters, including Dick Heard, Joe Deaton and Nelson Larkin. Deaton produced "Borrowed Angel," which was his debut single. This song was a brilliant start to Mel's tragically short career. Street first recorded the song at Nashville's "RCA Studio A" in 1970. Backing Street on the session were musicians Buddy Harman (drums), Lloyd Green (steel guitar), Kelso Herston (guitar), Tommy Jackson (fiddle), Buddy Spicher (fiddle), Bob Moore (bass guitar), Hargus "Pig" Robbins (piano), Billy Sanford (guitar) and Pete Wade (guitar). Because Street's producer didn't give the song a huge promotional push, it took two years and three different distributions of the single before it became a hit. "Borrowed Angel" entered the Billboard charts in 1972, on the Tandem label (TR-005). By the time it had worked its way up to the No. 7 spot, its peak position; it had been transferred over to the small Nashville-based label, Royal American (issue, RA-64). With Jim Prater as his manager and Jean Prater as his publisher, Street soon moved into the spotlight. Mel performed on several TV programs, appeared on the Grand Ole Opry and was a frequent guest on Ralph Emery's late-night radio program, which aired on station WSM-AM (650) Nashville. Street's concert dates soared even as his fees for them escalated. Some of Nashville's best songwriters were eager to provide material for the dazzling newcomer. When Dick Heard, who also headed Royal American, moved to Metromedia Country, Street followed him. Metromedia then sold out to GRT Records, with Street as part of the deal. Street next switch was to Polydor and when that label closed its Nashville branch, Mel joined Mercury Records, his final recording home. Mercury could have been the break Mel needed to thrust his career. They had more resources for producing and promoting artists, but fate intervened. A devoted family man, Mel detested being on the road for the increasingly long stretches of time his popularity demanded. To cope with all the stress, he drank heavily, remaining on a downward spiral until the end. Mel Street was a great singer with a superb and unique voice. "Borrowed Angel" was an excellent song and very appropriate for its time. Mel had a wholesome distinct voice that ranked among the best of his era. Both Mel Street and "Borrowed Angel" were hidden gems with untapped potential. ~ RJB: Country Music Historian, 9/2010. Also see: Ten Hidden Gems: Country Song Hit # 2 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ "Borrowed Angel" (No.7, 1972): Written and performed by: Mel Street Her fingers feel so gentle with her hand in mine ~ Her hair feels like silk on my arm Her lips tell me so tenderly she's mine alone ~ Until we part tonight and she goes home Borrowed angel belongs to someone else ~ I love my borrowed angel I just can't help myself That ring on her finger don't belong to me ~ But she loves me and I know she'll save some borrowed time for me I wish that I could have her more than just tonight ~ We can't go on like this it isn't right When that lonesome feeling comes knocking on my door ~ I'll call my borrowed angel to ease the pain once more Borrowed angel belongs to someone else ~ I love my borrowed angel I just can't help myself That ring on her finger don't belong to me But she loves me and I know she'll save some borrowed time for me But she loves me and I know she'll save some borrowed time for me