The 1937 Flood Watch
The 1937 Flood Watch Podcast
"Ready for the Times to Get Better"

"Ready for the Times to Get Better"

#312 / Feb. 9 Podcast

No transcript...

This song took a very long road on its journey to Floodlandia. The first time it was played in our band room was more than a dozen years ago on a mellow autumn night when our friends Randy Hamilton and Paul Martin dropped in to jam with us.

Neither was a member of The Flood yet — Randy would join the following year and Paul a few years after that — but their song was the hit of the evening. In fact, it was featured later in our weekly podcast.

However, “Ready for the Times to Get Better” didn’t work its way into our repertoire until now. A couple of weeks ago, Danny Cox happened to start picking the tune between songs on the night’s practice list, and that jaunty melody really jingled in our memory.

After that, Dan and Randy got together to woodshed a little, working out an arrangement, and then at last week’s rehearsal they popped it on the rest of us. With joy, everybody joined in.

About the Song

Arkansas native Allen Reynolds, who grew up in Memphis 85 years ago, already was an established songwriter in the early 1970s when he met the up-and-coming country singer Crystal Gayle.

His major credit before that was “Five O’Clock World,” which he wrote in 1965 for The Vogues to take to No. 1.

When Reynolds left Memphis for Nashville, he worked with artists like Don Williams and Waylon Jennings, but his most notable collaboration was with Gayle, including work on her hits “Wrong Road Again” and “Somebody Loves You.”

When Gayle left Decca in 1975, Reynolds followed her to UA Records where he helped develop her signature soft rock sound.

It was during this fertile period in the singer’s career that Reynolds wrote “Ready for the Times to Get Better,” which appeared on Crystal, Gayle’s third studio album in 1976.

Released as a single in January 1978, the song because her fourth No. 1 hit, spending 10 weeks on the Billboard Hot Country charts.

Over the years since then, the song has been covered by rock and country artists, including Marshall Chapman, Joe Sun, Cody Jinks and Billy Strings.

But hands down, The Flood’s favorite version is Doc Watson’s cover with David Holt on their 2002 Legacy album.

The 1937 Flood Watch
The 1937 Flood Watch Podcast
Each week The 1937 Flood, West Virginia's most eclectic string band, offers a free tune from a recent rehearsal, show or jam session. Music styles range from blues and jazz to folk, hokum, ballad and old-time. All the podcasts, dating back to 2008, are archived on our website; you and use the archive for free at: