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Playing a pop-friendly brand of country-rock indebted to the Eagles, Restless Heart was one of the most popular country bands of the late '80s and early '90s, scoring numerous hits on the country charts and a few major successes on adult contemporary radio as well. The band first got together in 1984 at the behest of producer-songwriter Tim DuBois, who wanted some musicians to demo a batch of material that walked the line between country and pop. Drummer-vocalist John Dittrich, pianist Dave Innis, bassist-vocalist Paul Gregg, and guitarist Greg Jennings were initially joined by singer Verlon Thompson, and the demo sessions went so well that the group decided to stay together and pursue a record deal. They signed with RCA in 1983, at which point Thompson was replaced by lead singer Larry Stewart, a demo vocalist Innis knew from Belmont College in Nashville.
Restless Heart's self-titled debut album was released in 1985 and contained three Top 10 hits: "I Want Everyone to Cry," "(Back to The) Heartbreak Kid," and "Til I Loved You." The 1986 follow-up, Wheels, was their true breakthrough release, topping the country charts and producing four No. 1 hits: "That Rock Won't Roll," the ballad "I'll Still Be Loving You" (also a No. 3 adult contemporary hit), "Why Does It Have to Be (Wrong or Right)," and "Wheels." Big Dreams in a Small Town in 1988 gave the band six consecutive chart-toppers thanks to its first two singles, "A Tender Lie" and "The Bluest Eyes in Texas." Its title track and "Say What's in Your Heart" also reached the Top 5. In 1989, the album Fast Movin' Train spawned two more Top Five hits in the title track and "Dancy's Dream."
Stewart left the group for a solo career in 1990. He later scored a big hit with "Alright Already," but never matched it. Meanwhile, Gregg and Dittrich split lead vocal duties on 1992's Big Iron Horses, which gave them another adult contemporary crossover hit with "When She Cries." Innis left the band in 1992, and the remaining trio watched "Tell Me What You Dream" become their first adult contemporary chart-topper in 1993.
However, after 1994's Matters of the Heart, they disbanded. Jennings joined Vince Gill's band, while Dittrich worked with the Buffalo Club. Restless Heart reunited in 1998 -- minus Innis ? with four new tracks appearing on a Greatest Hits compilation, as well as a tour with Gill. All five members of Restless Heart later reunited, with their sound intact, for the 2004 album Still Restless. ~ Steve Huey, All Music Guide
Restless Heart Song List
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