Album: Bustin' Out (1972)
Charted: 27
  • songfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • As .38 Special can tell you, you've got to hold on loosely. In this song, the guy the has driven Amie off by trying to control her, and now she's with another guy. All this is established in the first verse; he spends the rest of the song trying to get her back, telling her it's different now, and they should give it another chance.

    The song was written and sung by Craig Fuller, who along with George Powell handled vocals and string instruments in the group. Fuller has had plenty of chances to make up a story about the real Amie, but he insists that he made the whole thing up as a songwriting exercise, just "stringing words and music together." Amie is a character he created.
  • This song was never much of a hit, but it has shown remarkable endurance. It first appeared on the band's second album, Bustin' Out, in 1972. The group is from Southern Ohio, but they recorded the album in Toronto at RCA Studios. "Amie" was sent to radio stations as a promotional single, which helped the album sell reasonably well in the US and Canada. But in 1973, Craig Fuller got drafted and had to leave the band - he worked in a hospital as a conscientious objector. RCA Records dropped the band, but "Amie" didn't go away: it kept popping up on radio stations, especially at colleges. RCA re-signed the band in 1975, with Larry Goshorn in place of Fuller. While the group was working on their third album, RCA issued "Amie" as a commercial single; it rose to #27 in the US.

    That modest chart position is a poor indicator of the song's popularity. With a country-rock sound popularized by Poco and the Eagles, it stuck to playlists across a variety of formats and entered the collective conscious, even though the vast majority of listeners couldn't identify the group or spell the title correctly. The Bustin' Out was certified Gold (500,000 copies in America) in 1976.

    When Fuller was allowed to make music again, he teamed with Eric Kaz to form American Flyer in 1976. When Little Feat re-grouped in 1987 following the death of frontman Lowell George, Fuller took his spot. He was with the band until 1993. Pure Prairie League was inactive for most of this time, but got back together in 1998 with Fuller and began performing again.
  • The way Fuller delivers the vocal on this song, it's hard not to hope Amie takes him back. But Amie might know better. Sure, he's full of contrition and sounds very sweet, but he tends to dither. At the end of the song, he keeps "falling in and out of love" with her. He'd best make up his mind.
  • The single version of this song was cut down to 2:37. The album version, which runs 4:19, is the one most often heard.
  • The "Fallin' in and out of love with you" bit at the end references a song called "Falling In And Out Of Love," which precedes "Amie" on the Bustin' Out album.
  • In terms of chart position, this was not Pure Prairie League's biggest hit. That would be "Let Me Love You Tonight," which went to #10 US in 1980 and also hit #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart. That one featured lead singer Vince Gill, who joined the band in 1978 and left in 1982.
  • The group name comes from the 1939 Errol Flynn movie called Dodge City, where a group of women form the "Pure Prairie League" to clean up the town.
Please sign in or register to post comments.

Comments

Be the first to comment...

Jello BiafraSongwriter Interviews

The former Dead Kennedys frontman on the past, present and future of the band, what music makes us "pliant and stupid," and what he learned from Alice Cooper.

Billy Steinberg - "Like A Virgin"They're Playing My Song

The first of Billy's five #1 hits was the song that propelled Madonna to stardom. You'd think that would get you a backstage pass, wouldn't you?

Rick AstleySongwriter Interviews

Rick Astley on "Never Gonna Give You Up," "Cry For Help," and his remarkable resurgence that gave him another #1 UK album.

Donnie Iris (Ah! Leah!, The Rapper)Songwriter Interviews

Before "Rap" was a form of music, it was something guys did to pick up girls in nightclubs. Donnie talks about "The Rapper" and reveals the identity of Leah.

Dar WilliamsSongwriter Interviews

A popular contemporary folk singer, Williams still remembers the sticky note that changed her life in college.

JJ Burnel of The StranglersSongwriter Interviews

JJ talks about The Stranglers' signature sound - keyboard and bass - which isn't your typical strain of punk rock.