Little Anthony & the Imperials enjoyed a surprising career resurgence in 1964 after four years of struggling by hooking up with DCP Records and turning to the dramatic lovelorn ballads of Terry Randazzo and Bobby Weinstein: "I'm on the Outside (Looking In)" and "Goin' out of My Head." For their next single, Randazzo separated from Weinstein, but brought in two more Bobbys: Bobby Hart, who wasn't yet working exclusively with Tommy Boyce, and Bobby Wilding. They came up with another opportunity for Little Anthony to express romantic torment, "Hurt So Bad." The narrator encounters a recently departed lover and tells her how much it hurts to be without her. He notes that he's heard she's in love with somebody else, but says it will "hurt so bad" if she leaves him. (Since she seems to have left him already, this doesn't quite make sense, but his irrationality only serves to reinforce the power of his emotions.) He pleads with her to stay and says he'll do anything if she will. The song's message was emphasized by the arrangement, which had light, rhythmic verses and thundering drums and backup vocals in counterpoint to lead into the choruses. It was another heartbreaking winner for the team of songwriters and performers, and it peaked in the Top Ten following its January 1965 release. In subsequent years, if it did not achieve the exalted status of its predecessor, "Goin' out of My Head," as a standard, it did become a perennial, hitting the singles charts three more times in the next 15 years. The Lettermen, who had previously covered "Goin' out of My Head," revived it in 1969 for a Top 20 hit; Jackie DeShannon combined it in a medley with "You Keep Me Hangin' On" that reached the charts in 1976; and Linda Ronstadt took it back into the Top Ten in 1980.