George Strait released “Easy Come, Easy Go” on Aug. 9, 1993, as the title track—and lead single—to his 14th studio album.
George Strait was cranking out studio albums at a frenetic pace in the 1980s and 1990s, basically dropping at least one per year during those two decades. He also sprinkled in a handful of compilation albums, a couple of Christmas albums, and the soundtrack to Pure Country. And why not strike while the iron was hot? George’s albums were routinely topping the chart. And almost all of his singles were bona fide hits.
Speaking of hits, George’s favorite songwriter, Dean Dillon, penned a number of them. By 1993, George had scored No. 1 hits with Dean’s “The Chair,” “Nobody in His Right Mind Would’ve Left Her,” “It Ain’t Cool to Be Crazy About You,” “Ocean Front Property,” “Famous Last Words of a Fool,” “I’ve Come to Expect It From You,” and “If I Know Me.”
Likewise, George had also frequently tapped into the songwriting prowess of Aaron Barker by 1993. The Texas-born songwriter was responsible for chart-topping hits “Baby Blue” and “Love Without End, Amen.”
It was only a matter of time before Dean and Aaron decided to write together for the first time. “Easy Come, Easy Go” was the result, which turned into the perfect break-up song for the King of Country Music.
From Difficult to Easy
At the request of his publishing company, Aaron made the trek from San Antonio to Nashville to write with Dean for the first time in the early 1990s. That was music to George Strait’s ears. Dean showed up at Aaron’s hotel room with his guitar in hand. But the tandem got off to a slow start.
“Dean came in, and he sat there on the floor with his back against the wall and his guitar in his lap,” said Aaron Barker to Country Weekly in 2014. “So I just kind of did the same thing, opposite the room from him. We did something they hadn’t told me about—we did co-staring. How do you open up to somebody you just met? So we sat there and co-stared for quite a while. We weren’t really getting anywhere.”
But Dean, who had just restored a vintage Pontiac, suggested the pair take a cruise around town. The small talk led to both men opening up to each other.
“It turns out Dean was going through a really challenging spot in a relationship, and he was pretty upset about it,” noted Aaron, who began discussing “how, in a perfect world, these relationship breakups would just be easy, instead of dwelling on the difficulty of it and going through all this anxiety. Then we realized . . . that was our song we needed to write. We figured, it’s our picture, we can paint it however we want, and we really connected on this thing.”
Indeed, Dean and Aaron connected. “Easy Come, Easy Go” topped the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart on Oct. 23, 1993, netting George Strait his 25th No. 1 hit.