Skip to main content

Rewinding the Country Charts: In 1989, Clint Black Was ‘Killin” It

With his debut set and second single, Clint Black led Hot Country Songs and Top Country Albums simultaneously.

Ask any millennial what’s special about 1989, and the response will most likely be that it’s the title of Taylor Swift‘s smash album. But  there’s more to the year. A big part of the so-called rookie “class of ’89,” which includes Garth Brooks, Alan Jackson and Mary Chapin Carpenter, was Clinton Patrick “Clint” Black.

On Oct. 14, 1989, Black scored a milestone: then 27, he stepped 2-1 on Hot Country Songs with “Killin’ Time,” the title track from his debut album. During the set’s 31-week reign on Top Country Albums, following its debut that May, he led the two charts simultaneously for the first time. The song became his second of four No. 1s from the LP, earned Country Music Association single and song of the year honors and helped Black garner the 1989 CMA Horizon Award and his first Grammy Award nomination.

Now 53, Black is back with his new set On Purpose, which bowed at No. 13 on the Oct. 17 Top Country Albums chart.

This article first appeared in Billboard’s Country Update — sign up here.