Love Hurts

Album: Hair Of The Dog (1975)
Charted: 15 8
  • songfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • Nazareth made this song a hit, but it was originally released by the Everly Brothers on their 1960 album A Date With The Everly Brothers. Like their heartbreak hit from 1957, "Bye Bye Love," it was written by Boudleaux Bryant.

    Young love is hot with passion, but it burns you when it's hot. The guy in this song has just made this discovery, which is a revelation of sorts - all those singing the praises of love are fools who will soon be burned, as love is just a lie made to make you blue.
  • The original Everly Brothers version runs 2:23 and is delivered in their distinctive, pleasing harmonies. The Nazareth version is 3:03, with sandpaper vocals by lead singer Dan McCafferty screamed out as if he's falling into the pit of despair.

    The group is from Scotland and had three UK hits under their belts when they released "Love Hurts" late in 1974. Surprisingly, it tanked, but in April 1975 it became a hit in South Africa, prompting their label, A&M, to release it in America. It took a while, but radio stations in Texas started playing the song, and others around the country gradually followed suit. It reached its peak position of #8 in March 1976. In the UK, the song finally made the chart in 1977, peaking at #77.

    Nazareth's Stateside success was short lived: "Holiday" reached #87 in 1980, and "Love Leads To Madness" went to #105 in 1982, but none of their other songs charted there.
  • The album version runs 3:52, with a guitar solo by Manny Charlton that is not on the 3:03 single.
  • According to Don Everly, the Everly Brothers planned to release this as a single, but industry politics got in the way. The group was managed by Wesley Rose, who was part owner of the publishing company Acuff-Rose. After a string of hits for Cadence Records, they left for Warner Bros. in 1960, continuing their hit parade with "Cathy's Clown" and "So Sad (To Watch Good Love Go Bad)." But Rose wanted them to release singles for which Acuff-Rose owned the publishing, and when the duo recorded covers of "Lucille" and "Temptation" (a song from 1933), he protested, leading to a split and a legal dispute. Rose had another one of his clients, Roy Orbison, record "Love Hurts" and released it as the B-side to his #1 hit "Running Scared" in 1961.

    "Wesley covered us with Roy Orbison, which was outlandishly selfish," Don Everly said in Walk Right Back: The Everly Brothers On Warner Bros. "The arrangement was ours, and it was written for us. We couldn't release it as a single because we didn't know if Acuff-Rose would license it or not because we were in a lawsuit with them. It got that bitter."
  • By the time Nazareth brought this song to life, the Everly Brothers had been split for three years. When they re-formed in 1983, they added the song to their setlists for the first time, starting with their reunion concert at Royal Albert Hall, which was released as a live album. In later years, it sometimes seemed like they were singing it to each other on stage, as their relationship had clearly soured.
  • The Everly Brothers recorded a new version on their 1965 album Rock'n Soul. Other artists to release it include Ray Peterson, Jimmy Webb, and Gram Parsons with Emmylou Harris. Jim Capaldi is the only other artist to chart with the song; he took it to #97 US in December 1975.
  • Nazareth got their name from the first line of the Band's "The Weight" - "I pulled into Nazareth..."
Please sign in or register to post comments.

Comments: 51

  • Julia from Leonardo, NjThis song is originally written by Felice and Boudeleaux Bryant. One of the finest recordings is by Emmy Lou Harris and Graham Parsons.
  • Lee G from Atlanta, GaRE: Pierre - Cape Breton, Ns
    All overdrive ... good old feedback. Of course, it can be quite illusive at times ... you can duplicate the levels and the angle/proximity to the amp and sometimes it sustains and when it doesn't, you get to improvise and make that "oh well" face. It also sounds like he uses a slide in the recording, but all vids I found showed the guitarists bending.
    I am sure there is a little echo/reverb thrown in in the mix, but not much.
    --
    Concerning the song, the real star is the unbelievably emotional vocal performance. He is so underrated.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn March 7th 1976, "Love Hurts" by Nazareth peaked at #8 (for 1 week) on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; it entered the chart on November 16th, 1975 at position #95 and spent 23 weeks on the Top 100...
    And on February 28th, 1976 it reached #1 (for 1 week) on the Canadian RPM Top Singles chart...
    Three weeks after Nazareth entered the Top 100 with the song, Jim Capaldi came on the chart at position #97 with his covered version, but he only stayed on the Top 100 for one week...
    In 1991 Cher's covered version reached #43 on the United Kingdom's Singles chart...
    Nazareth had one other Top 100 record, "Holiday", it stayed on the chart for three weeks, peaking at #87.
  • Steven from Universal City, TxMan, my first REAL heartbreak in 2010, I played this CD track maybe 14 times all the way through. It really spoke to me.
  • Erwin Deleon from North Hollywood, Cawell, Depends how you experience your love, is the answer to the results. of the outcome. but for me pure. and real love doesn't hurt. Love is beautiful, when you share it. with the right person..
  • Ken from Pittsburgh, PaI always thought this song was kind of annoying. Hair of the Dog is a much better song for Nazareth
  • Jesus Herrera from Mexico, MexicoI used to listen to this song in my teens, on Mexico City FM radio station "Universal". I think it has one of the best solo guitar ever.
  • Joel from Columbia, NyIt is once thought that women are more emotional than men but that just isn't true. I am a very emotional creature and in a sold relationship with a wonderful woman but I still cry and feel hurt a lot more than a lot of my male friends...Anyway I like this song and yes it is very emotional especially where love is concerned.
  • Jimmy from Knox, TnThe husband and wife that wrote Love Hurts also wrote Rocky Top sung by the Osborne Brothers and the couple lived in Gatlinburg Tn.when they wrote it.I think there last names were the Bryants.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyNever heard the Everly Bro. version; but Nazareth sang 'love is like a flame it burns you when it's hot' Roy Orbison version had 'love is like a stove, it burns you when it's hot' Love both version, it's just a plain great song!!!
  • D from Frisoc, TxThe Naz version is the best.Haven't heard this sone in forever until it is was on some commercial. Had to look it up to see who sang it. Remember this song from Jr. High, didn't mean so much, but now 30 years later it makes a lot of sense!
  • Oldpink from New Castle, InAh, hell, I still love this song.
    Nazareth stood out at the time as a heavy rocking band with a few ballads, but retaining that hard edge.
    Another really good Nazareth song, this time much darker and almost unknown to those who don't have their albums, is "Please Don't Judas Me."
  • Musicmama from New York, NyThis song came out when I was in high school. I heard it just now, for the first time in a long time, on the radio.


    One way I know a song is good is if I like it even better now than I did "back in the day." And this one has even more emotional impact on me now than it did when I was a teenager. Plus, I appreciate the nice instrumentation and melody even more than I did then.
  • Louie from Davao, PhilippinesI agree with lawrence, it should be " some fool dream with happines.I really love this " Love Hurts", the impact of this song is so strong and the way it floats can penetrate to the deepest.
  • Ron from Sioux Falls S.d., SdI agree with Shana, This site definitely needs more NAZ... This song brings back a lot of memories for me, Also it's my favorite variation..To each his own I guess...
  • Pierre from Cape Breton, NsDoes anyone out there know what effects were used by the guitarist "manny charlton" of Nazareth of course, in the song. Sounds like a combination of stereo chorus, echoe or delay, maybe some flange or phase, etc. :)
  • Don from B G, KyWow, it is so TRIPPY to listen to Nazareth's version on youtube and THEN listen to the Everly Brothers version. Talk about a difference in styles. I still think I prefer Naz's raw style. One big lyric diff is that the Everly's sing "Love is like a STOVE it burn's you when it's hot." Whereas, Naz sings "Love is like a FLAME, it burns you when it's hot."
  • Renee from SaskatoonPersonally, I think Joan Jett's cover is tby far the best version of this song.
  • Julia from Knoxville, TnThis song brings about two different feelings at the same time: while I want to cry and identify with the song, I also want to turn that dial until the song ends. More of the latter, it's like nails on a chalkboard.
  • Lawrence from Syracuse, NyI believe that the second verse goes like this, Some fools DREAM of happiness not some fools THINK of happiness someone please tell me i'm correct
  • Walter from Antwerp, BelgiumReleased already in November 1974, the Nazareth single took more than a year to hit the charts anywhere. However in the UK, it went nowhere, Jim Capaldi made it Top 5 instead. This is the reason, Erik from Denmark, why it can not be found on the UK-version of the 'Hair Of The Dog'-album, only the US-version on A&M.
  • Walter from Antwerp, BelgiumRegardless which version is best, if it wasn't for Gram Parsons, Nazareth would've never touched this, I guess. The upbeat version by the Everly's was done in early 1965 for inclusion on their 'Rock'n'Soul'-album. Oddly enough, this was an album full of covers, e.g. Buddy Holly's 'That'll Be The day', with only this track, the brothers were covering themselves !!
  • Teresa from Mechelen, BelgiumMessage to Mike and André : for me the original version of the Everly Brothers is top; the cover of Nazareth is sh..; ofcourse that's my opinion.
  • André from Purmerend, NetherlandsMike Cunningham has all the 'wisdom' to proclaim what's the 'best' version and what's 'trash'.
    Well Mike, that wisdom can only be found between your own two ears and can only be individual...!
  • Mike Cunningham from Texarkana, TxLOVE HURTS BY NAZARETH IS THE BEST VERSION.
  • Mike Cunningham from Texarkana, TxTHE GRAM PARSON 'S VERSION OF LOVE HURTS IS TRASH.
  • André from Purmerend, NetherlandsThe original slow 'Love Hurts' version by The Everly Brothers was recorded on July 13, 1960 and was released on the album 'A Date With The Everly Brothers'.
    They also recorded an up-beat version in the 'That'll Be The Day' style; I don't know when. Because of the style, it was probably recorded in the mid sixties. It can be found on the Arcade Benelux B.V. Label, CD: 01 5930 61, released in 1991.
    For guitar players: The slow version is in the: F# key, the up-beat version in the A key. The latter is recorded in one set beat for the whole song of: A, F#m, D, E7, 2 measures in each chord.
  • Joel from Seattle, WaThis song is about heartache. It was featured on the Dazed and Confused soundtrack.
  • Ghada from Amman, OtherHi ... It really hurts and scares to love ... it is only a lie ... this song just say it all ...thank you Nazareth
  • Teresa from Mechelen, BelgiumNever liked this song until I heard the version of The Everley Brothers, much better than this.
  • Jon from Oakridge, OrI'm a fan of Roy Orbison and I think his and Nazareths are head to head the best. Listened to Parsons and Harris'; didn't think much of it, AT ALL.
  • Markus from Stockholm, SwedenWhen did Everly Brothers record their version?
  • Jay from Atlanta, GaErik, Check out: http://www.nehrecords.com/shop/NazarethHair.htm
    TRACK LISTING
    1. Hair Of The Dog
    2. Miss Misery
    3. Love Hurts
    4. Changin' Times
    5. Beggars Day
    6. Rose In The Heather
    7. Whiskey Drinkin' Woman
    8. Please Don'r Judas Me

    and yes, it was '75.
  • Erik from KÃ?ge, DenmarkI am searching for "Love Hurts" with Nazareth, on this page it says that that it is from "Hair of the dog" from 1976. I am sitting with that album, but it is from 1975 and "Love Hurts" is not on. Side A is 1. Hair of the dog, 2. Miss Misery, 3. Guilty, 4. Changing'times, Side B is 5. Beggars day, 6. Rose in the heather, 7. Whisky drinkin'woman, 8. Please don't judas me.
    The album is Vertigo #6370 405. Is there another version where "Love hurts" is included?
  • Jonny from Leeds, EnglandI agree with you Jeff from Stokie that the Gram Parsons/Emmylou Harris version is the best version. Coming from Northern England I'll admit counrty music aint my speciality. (ask me about the early '90s rave scene in Leeds/Manchester and I'll fill you in) This song seems to have captured my attention purely for the rendition. I've listened several times and can tell that Emmylou is singing in beautiful harmony. I try to listem to Gram and he's quality. Either by accident, production or talent it seems to work but I can't understand why he gets it right. Keep on fighting Gram! On and On and On.....
  • Andrew from TorontoYes Nazareth has written their own songs-Hair of the Dog(son of a b),Holiday,Razamataz,lots of covers from other bands made them famous-This Flight Tonight-Joni Mitchel,Morning Dew,My White Bicycle-Tommorrow(Steve Howe from Yes 1st band)and of course Love Hurts.Cool band,never cared for this song though..,
  • Zak from Austin, TxYou are right Jeff. Gram Parson's version of this song is awesome. I've never cared much for Nazareth's cover.
  • Mike from Indianapolis, InThis song was in the movie Grand Theft Parsons. That was my first realization that Nazareth did not write this song. In fact, I think it sounded a lot prettier.
  • Dee from Indianapolis, InOne of the true classic love songs of my childhood. Between this Love Stinks & I don't believe in Love by Queensryche you got your bases covered when your heart is broken.
  • Faith from Athens, OhActually, Bon Jovi have never done a cover of this song. Corey Hart's version of this song has been mistaken by many people as Bon Jovi. Corey's voice does resemble Jon Bon Jovi's voice a little bit. Corey released this song on his self-titled album in 1996.
    Bon Jovi have recorded a song called "Love Hurts", but it is their own and not a cover song. It is completely different than this one.
  • Gary from London, EnglandDon McLean recorded this on his 1981 "Believers" album. It's the best I've heard so far.
  • Rob from Santa Monica, CaAlways hated this song. It seemed like cheese even in the 70s when it was released. Now, "Hair of the Dog" by Nazareth is a completely different story...
  • Victor from Vienna, Vathis appears in "Dazed in Confused" (1993) during the middle school end-of-the-year dance
  • Ted from Kingston, CanadaDid Nazareth even write any of their own songs? As This Flight Tonight is written by Joni Mitchell!
  • Shana from Pembroke, CanadaI love Nazareth and this site needs some more of their songs!
  • Soyab from Toronto, CanadaThe song was written by Boudleaux Bryant
    -S. Sheri, Canada
  • Jeff from Skokie, Ilthe best version of this is Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris....I strongly urge you to listen to it
  • Julia from London, EnglandBon Jovi, Aerosmith and Van halen have all recorded versions of this song
  • Dave from Pomeroy, OhHeart did an awesome version of this
  • Pete from Nowra, AustraliaJim Capaldi also released a version of this song it was a bit more up tempo
  • Jared from Meadville, PaIntersting comment about where the band name came from. That line about pulling into Nazareth was written at a time when The Band was a little strung out from touring (and most likely from drugs too). Nazareth, PA is where the world famous Martin Guitar Company is located. Levon Helm and Robbie Robertson came up with all these characters who represented lots of different things and people, some real, some imaginary. They happened to have been picking up some guitars when they started writing the song. So for the band Nazareth to name themselves after that song is just fascinating. There is really no connection musically between The Band and Nazareth. The Band happened to use the town Nazareth because of their recent visit, and the play on a biblical place. Kinda just arbitrary really
see more comments

Lip-Synch RebelsSong Writing

What happens when Kurt Cobain, Iron Maiden and Johnny Lydon are told to lip-synch? Some hilarious "performances."

British InvasionFact or Fiction

Go beyond The Beatles to see what you know about the British Invasion.

Jim McCarty of The YardbirdsSongwriter Interviews

The Yardbirds drummer explains how they created their sound and talks about working with their famous guitarists.

Chris Fehn of SlipknotSongwriter Interviews

A drummer for one of the most successful metal bands of the last decade, Chris talks about what it's like writing and performing with Slipknot. Metal-neck is a factor.

Dr. JohnSongwriter Interviews

The good doctor shares some candid insights on recording with Phil Spector and The Black Keys.

Tim Butler of The Psychedelic FursSongwriter Interviews

Tim and his brother Richard are the Furs' foundation; Tim explains how they write and tells the story of "Pretty In Pink."