Dwight Yoakam

Ain't That Lonely Yet

Composed by James House / Kostas

Song Review by

Backed by a Charlie Rich/Billy Sherrill-like countrypolitan wall of sound, Dwight Yoakam gives the emotionally resonant performance that won him a Grammy in 1993 for Country Best Male Vocal Performance on the country ballad "Ain't That Lonely Yet." The song was the first single from Yoakam's sixth record, the multi-platinum This Time (1993), and went to number one on the country chart. This Time went as high as number 25 on the pop albums chart. One of the few songs not credited at least in part to Yoakam, "Ain't That Lonely Yet was written by Kostas -- the mono-named guitarist and country songwriter who has written forWynona Judd, Patty Loveless, and others -- and James House, a collaborator and writer for the Mavericks, among others. House and the Mavericks specialize in the back-to-roots country sound that like-minded Yoakam practices. A declaration of strength, lyrically, in the spirit of the breakup anthem "I Will Survive," "Ain't That Lonely Yet"'s most compelling verse is the second, which uses the metaphor of the ex-lover as a spider: the singer gets "caught up in her web/She spun her chains around my heart and soul/Never to let go/Oh, but I am alive." Nevertheless the woman won't leave the narrator alone: "Leaving notes stuck on (his) door/Girl that's too bad." The song is a biting kiss-off by a suddenly strong protagonist. Aside from a lush wall-to-wall string arrangement, "Ain't That Lonely Yet" features stellar two-part harmonies by longtime Yoakam aide de camp, producer/guitarist Pete Anderson. The chord changes, particularly the half-step climbs during the song's bridge and into the chorus, are spine-tingling. The instrumentation is mostly fine, but the drumming feels a bit stiff, if not programmed, making the production feel like Yoakam was trying to force a hit; seemingly, it worked.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
This Time 1993 Reprise / Warner Bros. 3:21
Pieces of Time [Video/DVD] 1994 Rhino
Last Chance for a Thousand Years: Greatest Hits from the 90's 1999 Reprise 3:20
Reprise Please Baby: The Warner Bros. Years 2002 Reprise / Rhino 3:18
The Very Best of Dwight Yoakam 2004 Rhino / Warner Bros. 3:21
The Essentials 2005 WEA International 3:19
Prime 17: Awesome 90s Country 2007
Various Artists
Direct Source 3:22
Country Top Hits 2007
Various Artists
Collectables 3:20
Ultimate Grammy Collection: Contemporary Country 2008
Various Artists
Shout! Factory 3:22
Top 10 2010 Warner Bros.
Original Album Series 2012 Rhino 3:20
blue highlight denotes editor's pick