Gloriousconfusion profile image

Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town- My Favorite Sad Song

Every time I hear this song, it makes me feel emotional. I don't understand why it pulls my heart strings to such an extent - is it the words, is it the music, is it the desperation in Kenny Rodger's voice, or is it a combination of all three?

I know not. I just know it brings tears to my eyes, and a funny feeling in the pit of my stomach. Now that's what I call songwriting.

The song, which came out in 1969, gives a very visual picture, and, as the words come tumbling out, each time I hear it, I see this brave and struggling Vietnam War veteran, sitting in his wheelchair, desperate to keep his beloved Ruby's love, and as he watches her doing up her makeup to go out, he begs her not to leave him. He is fully aware of his limitations and knows he can no longer satisfy her needs, but he is afraid of being abandoned and losing his lover and feels completely impotent.

I feel every one of those emotions, and it tears my heart. What sort of idiot must I be, that it affects me so emotionally? I'm not a war veteran, I didn't support that war, I've never been in this situation, and I'm not a man, so what is it?

I'll tell you what it is - this song, Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town, has very powerful empathy, and Kenny Rodgers and the band knew just how to play it with maximum feeling and effect. The Vietnam War is over, but there are still wounded soldiers coming home, and this song is for all of them.

Number Ones
Number Ones

CD or MP3 versions available

 

More great music by Kenny Rogers - There's many a good tune played on an old fiddle

Listen to Kenny Rogers singing Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town on this video


This one is great because you can read the lyrics as you listen

Broken Hearted
Broken Hearted

Do you love "Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town" as much aas I do?

  • Yes, one of my all-time favorites
  • I quite like it
  • Sentimental trash, but I like the tune
  • I don't much like it - not my style
  • I've never heard of it
See results without voting

 Last updated on October 16, 2014

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Do leave a comment - did it bring back any old memories? 15 comments

SusanDeppner profile image

SusanDeppner 9 months ago from Arkansas USA Level 7 Commenter

Kenny Rogers does amazing things with his voice. Great song!


Brite-Ideas profile image

Brite-Ideas 9 months ago from Toronto, Canada Level 7 Commenter

wonderful review - will promote in all my usual places :), thank you!


tonyleather 9 months ago

A fantastic song by a legendary singer! Thanks!


Ruthi 9 months ago

It is nice to know I am not the only one who is so deeply affected by this song. Kenny Rogers hits right at the heart with Ruby.


Merrci profile image

Merrci 9 months ago from Oregon's Southern Coast Level 7 Commenter

Your description is excellent. I hadn't thought of it for awhile but thinking about it while reading tightens my heart (how's that for an odd description). Great lens on a great song.


Susan Zutautas profile image

Susan Zutautas 9 months ago from Ontario, Canada Level 5 Commenter

Love "Ruby Don't Take Your Love to Town"


Gloriousconfusion profile image

Gloriousconfusion 9 months ago from United Kingdom Hub Author

@Brite-Ideas: Thank you so much!


Carol Houle profile image

Carol Houle 9 months ago from Montreal Level 2 Commenter

My favorite song by Kenny (& the First Edition) is "Something's Burning". I always wished it was longer.

My sad Kenny Rogers song is "She Believes in Me". Being married to a traveling man seems difficult. Being married to a musician is harder still. My top SAD song from that era is "Reflections of My Life" by Marmalade. Rips me up, throws me down and kicks me out!


Gloriousconfusion profile image

Gloriousconfusion 9 months ago from United Kingdom Hub Author

@Carol Houle: I don't know any of those, but maybe if I heard them I would recognize them.


Charito1962 profile image

Charito1962 9 months ago from Manila, Philippines Level 5 Commenter

My favorite Kenny Rogers hit is "What About Me" with James Ingram and Kim Carnes.


Gypzeerose profile image

Gypzeerose 9 months ago Level 4 Commenter

Thanks for the sweet review. I didn't realize the song was about a Vietnam vet - I guess I never listened to it, just caught the tune.


Gloriousconfusion profile image

Gloriousconfusion 9 months ago from United Kingdom Hub Author

@Gypzeerose: You can tell by the date the song came out - 1969


Brite-Ideas profile image

Brite-Ideas 9 months ago from Toronto, Canada Level 7 Commenter

Just stopping by to congratulate you for review of the day as well :)


Gloriousconfusion profile image

Gloriousconfusion 9 months ago from United Kingdom Hub Author

@Brite-Ideas: Thanks, I was so pleased!


DebMartin profile image

DebMartin 9 months ago Level 2 Commenter

Yes. Love the song, love the man.

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