Tuesday, October 29, 2013


As the saying goes, there's no such thing as a bad title for a country song - because the worse it is, the better. After all, this is a genre that has given us sweet melodies with names like "If I Said You Had A Beautiful Body, Would You Hold It Against Me", "You're The Reason Our Kids Are Ugly", "I'm Gonna Hire A Wino To Decorate Our Home", and the immortal "Flushed From The Bathroom Of Your Heart".

Those of you keeping score, add this one to the list. I first heard this on an old reel-to-reel tape my father had (remember?) and have been obsessed with it ever since. Turns out Lamar Morris was the lead guitarist for The Bama Band, who were Hank Williams, Jr.'s backing group. I'm guessing Hank had some pull with MGM, and got his buddy Lamar a contract. For his first 45, Lamar wrote "Kleenex" with Mack Vickery, who would go on to write a few of Jerry Lee Lewis' 1970s country hits (including the just plain dirty "Meat Man"). If not for anything else, "Kleenex" should be considered a great country 45 for its opening lines - "You can send me a box of Kleenex/Make it the biggest one they've got/'Cause since it seems I'm gonna be your ex/I know I'm gonna cry a lot".

Now, anyone who rhymes "Kleenex" with "your ex" is either a genius or a loony. I'm going with loony here. Let's face it, you couldn't have too great a stronghold on reality if you were touring with Hank, Jr. in the 60s and 70s, writing with a guy who once put out a live LP from a women's prison (and was one of Jerry Lee's best buddies, albeit one whom Jerry Lee never shot), AND allowed your first solo session to be produced by the truly certifiable Jack Clement (who had a gigantic swing installed in his living room and wrote the aforementioned "Flushed From The Bathroom Of Your Heart"). But, hey, so what? If we only allowed sane individuals to make records, there wouldn't be any good ones.

By the by, Lamar's still alive and kickin'! Check out his website.

Lamar Morris - Send Me A Box Of Kleenex (MGM 13586) - 1966


  1. "For his first 45" : you certainly mean "his first on MGM" because as you probably know Lamar Morris had previous records on ABC, Bonanza and Boone.

    His great "The Fugitive" is on YT

  2. Morris wrote and recorded an LP of songs promoting the 1968 third-party presidential campaign of Alabama governor George C. Wallace.