Quite often a singer's sudden death is ironically the best publicity for album sales. One need only look back to the deaths of such artists as John Denver, Karen Carpenter, or even the Notorious B.I.G. to remember the tremendous boost in sales an artist receives following his or her death. Of course, record label-induced posthumous releases tend to be bland and, were it not for fans relishing in the idea of having an artist's last recordings, otherwise forgettable. This was not the case with Jim Croce, whose posthumous chart status stayed healthy thanks to such latter-day hits as "I'll Have to Say I Love You in a Song" and, most specifically, "Time in a Bottle." Released shortly after Croce's sudden death, "Time in a Bottle" hit number one on the charts and became one of the late singer's most recognizable songs. While one could certainly argue the "sudden death equals publicity" idea, it is truly hard to put this song down. "Time in a Bottle" didn't really offer anything new in comparison to other Croce ballads -- the melody was slow and moody, the lyrics of lost opportunity and loneliness. Still, no previous Croce hit had combined all of his main ideas so vividly and empathetically as with "Time in a Bottle." Reportedly written in regards to the birth of his son, Croce touches on an endless number of his songwriting clichés but brings everything together well enough where you don't really notice, or care, for that matter. For this reason among many, "Time in a Bottle" may not be exactly Croce's best single, but it's far and away his most memorable. And even if it topped the charts after Croce's death, it's hard to say "Time in a Bottle" would never have been a hit otherwise -- to be blunt, it's a damn good song.