Two For Tuesday: Johnny Tillotson

Johnny Tillotson, from Jacksonville, Florida, is still going, mostly on the oldies circuit. He’s a singer and songwriter who had nine Top 10 hits on the Pop, Country, and Adult Contemporary charts in the Sixties, and is considered one of the Top 100 Artists in the Rock & Roll era.

His best-known song is “Poetry In Motion,” which reached #2 in the US on both the Billboard and Cash Box charts and went to #1 in the UK. It was recorded in Nashville, where he was backed by Boots Randolph on saxophone and Floyd Cramer on piano.

Johnny wrote and recorded “It Keeps Right On A-Hurtin'” in 1962, inspired by his father’s terminal illness. It was a hit on the Billboard Hot 100 (#3), the Cash Box Hot Singles chart (#5), the R&B chart (the only time he appeared on that chart, #6) and #4 on the Country chart, his first time on that chart. It was later recorded by Margaret Whiting, Elvis Presley, and Billy Joe Royal, who reached #17 on the Country chart in 1988.

A full list of his singles can be found here. His website lists his achievements. He’s been appearing on the “Rockin’ The Caribbean” cruises, the next of which is February 17-24 next year.

Johnny Tillotson, your Two for Tuesday, May 29, 2018.

7 thoughts on “Two For Tuesday: Johnny Tillotson

  1. I remember the song and the artist but didn’t put the two together. Wow, I didn’t realize Johnny Tillotson is still going strong.


  2. I like Poetry in Motion but I really enjoyed listening to the second song especially knowing the meaning behind the song.


    1. He had a few good ones that I can’t remember ever hearing. For someone as important to pop music history, that’s a little strange.


  3. I love ‘Poetry in Motion’, it’s so catchy! I’d heard the covers of ‘It Keeps Right On a-Hurtin” but I didn’t know the meaning behind it. Thanks for sharing.


    1. That’s one of the things I like about Two For Tuesday. A lot of times, I don’t know much about the artists or the songs, or that certain artists wrote or recorded specific songs. In this case, I had heard of Johnny Tillotson and knew “Poetry In Motion,” but honestly, I didn’t tie the two together, nor did I know anything else he had done or the place he held in the history of pop music. Reading the entry on Wikipedia (The Blogger’s Best Friend ™) about him showed me that he was a lot more important than I realized.


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