Buck Owens And His Buckaroos performs “I’ve Got A Tiger By The Tail” live on The Jimmy Dean Show 1965.

A classic of the Bakersfield sound, would be their fifth number one, was recorded on December 1, 1964, in Hollywood, California, and released on December 28. The song would be included on the album, I've Got A Tiger by The Tail (Capitol 1965), which was released on March 10, 1965.

YouTube - When The Cowboy Sings
YouTube - When The Cowboy Sings

I’ve Got a Tiger By the Tail:

cover single I've Got A Tiger By The Tail
cover single I’ve Got A Tiger By The Tail

Song written by Harlan Howard and Buck Owens, a classic of the Bakersfield sound, would be their fifth number one, was recorded on December 1, 1964, in Hollywood, California, and released on December 28. The song would be included on the album, I’ve Got A Tiger by The Tail (Capitol 1965), which was released on March 10, 1965. The album reached number one on the country album charts and the song reached number one on February 20, 1965, it remained five weeks in a country charts at number one, until March 26.

LP Cover cover single I've Got A Tiger By The Tail
LP Cover cover single I’ve Got A Tiger By The Tail

 

The song and the album were produced by Ken Nelson .In 1995 the Sundazed label, reissued on CD, the abum, “I’ve Got a Tiger by the Tail”, with two extra songs live.

The story behind the song:

Harlan Howard and Buck Owens, met to write songs, Owens realized that things were going slowly. Suddenly, he saw a sign of the Esso service station, with its slogan that said, Put a tiger in your tank, And, from there came the idea, because the tiger is a fast and strong animal, he feels that everything they do goes slowly, he incorporated the animal in the song.

Cover Ray Charles Sings The Songs Of Buck Owens
Cover Ray Charles Sings The Songs Of Buck Owens

For most of his performances, Owens always sang this song with Don Rich, the leader of the Buckaroos. In fact, Rich is considered the most loyal member of the band. Compared as a hand and a glove, the two shared much of the stage. They were an incredible duo and have surprised their audiences. In an interview, Owens recalled that their voices, combined, do more than the sum of their parts. Unfortunately, he died at an early age, aged 32, because of a car accident.

I’ve Got a Tiger by the Tail, is also an expression used when: “Face an obsession, look for an idea, a talent or even an obsessive vice, facing a difficult problem.” From the “Dictionary of Cliches” by James Rogers (Ballantine Books, New York, 1985).

Cover Under the Influence of Buck (The Derailers)
Cover Under the Influence of Buck (The Derailers)

Some versions :
Dave Berry 1965 ( Decca )
Ernest Tubb 1965 ( Decca )
Del Reeves 1965 ( Unaited Artist Records )
Ray Charles 1965 ( ABC Paramount )
Peter & Gordon 1966 ( Capitol )
Mrs. Elva Miller 1967 ( Capitol )
Mac Curtis 1968 ( Epic )
David Houston 1970 ( Epic)
The Walkers 1974 ( Killroy Records )
Sara Evans 1997 ( RCA )
The Derailers 2007 ( Palo Duro Records )
Daryl Singletary & Ricky Skaggs 2007 ( Sanachie Records )
The Waco brothers 2015( Blueshoot records)
…And many more .

Buck Owens – I’ve Got A Tiger By The Tail Lyrics

I’ve got a tiger by the tail, it’s plain to see
I won’t be much when you get through with me
Well I’m a-losing weight and I’m turning mighty pale
Looks like I’ve got a tiger by the tail

Well I thought the day I met you, you were meek as a lamb
Just the kind to fit my dreams and plans
Now, the pace we’re livin’ takes the wind from my sails
And it looks like I’ve got a tiger by the tail
I’ve got a tiger by the tail

I’ve got a tiger by the tail, it’s plain to see
I won’t be much when you get through with me
Well I’m a-losing weight and I’m turning mighty pale
Looks like I’ve got a tiger by the tail

Well, every night you drag me where the bright lights’re found
There ain’t no way to slow you down
I’m about as helpless as a leaf in a gale
And it looks like I’ve got a tiger by the tail
I’ve got a tiger by the tail

I’ve got a tiger by the tail, it’s plain to see
I won’t be much when you get through with me
Well I’m a-losing weight and I’m turning mighty pale
Looks like I’ve got a tiger by the tail

Single - I've Got A Tiger By The Tail
Single – I’ve Got A Tiger By The Tail

Miquel Batlle
mbatllegarriga@gmail.com