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11 Years Ago: Alan Jackson, Jimmy Buffett Hit No. 1 With ‘It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere’

Alan Jackson Five O Clock Somewhere cover
Arista Nashville

11 years ago today (Aug. 9, 2003) was a big day for Alan Jackson. It was on this day that his duet with Jimmy Buffett, ‘It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere,’ hit the top of the charts, where it stayed for eight weeks.

The song was the debut single from Jackson’s ‘Greatest Hits II’ album. Written by Jim ‘Moose’ Brown and Don Rollins, the tune encourages libations early in the day, saying, “It’s only half-past twelve but I don’t care / It’s five o’clock somewhere.”

“I had the idea of, ‘It’s Five O’clock Somewhere,’ and it just clicked that the idea would do really well with that setting,” Rollins recalls to The Boot. “I floated it out and [Brown] said, ‘Yeah, I’ve always heard that saying but I’ve never heard a song about that.’ So we wrote it. It was definitely that ‘Margaritaville‘ feel. Jim and I agreed what the story was, that this was a guy who decided to have a few at lunch, and then decided to stay there. Once that framework was there, then the lyrics were very easy for me. The musical setting of it was more Jim’s end of it. That chorus, ‘Pour me something tall and strong …’ musically, was definitely Jim’s thing.”

‘It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere’ was released on June 3, but the fact that Buffett was included in the song was kept as a surprise until the day it hit the airwaves. Portions of the video for the single were shot in Jupiter, Fla., near one of Jackson’s homes.

The duet won Jackson and Buffett a CMA Award for Vocal Event of the Year, as well as a Grammy for Best Country Song.

Jackson included ‘It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere’ in 2010′s ’34 Number Ones’ album, as well as in 2012′s ‘Playlist: The Very Best of Alan Jackson.’ Download the single here.

NEXT: The Top 10 Alan Jackson Songs

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