Song Lyric Sunday – 17 January 2021 – Just When I Needed You Most

Jim Adams’ Song Lyric Sunday gives us the chance to share familiar, and sometimes not so familiar, songs. This week the title of the song must start with D or J.

If you fancy sharing one of your favourite songs you can find out how to participate, and also listen to all the great entries, here.

I have this song amongst my collection, recorded by Smokie, and I had no idea who had written it or recorded it.  That version can be found down at the bottom.

The original was written and recorded by Randy VanWarmer, an American singer-songwriter who was inspired to write “Just When I Needed You Most” by two events: his old car, that 

he loved and used for years, broke down on his way to work in Denver, Colorado, and he experienced a “devastating” breakup with a girlfriend.  He wrote the song six months after that breakup, co-writing it with Tony Wilson of the group Hot Chocolate two years before it became a hit.

It was released as a single in February 1979 and reached No, 8 in the UK charts in September after peaking at No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No.1 on Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks earlier that year

Sadly, Randy died on 12th January 2004, from leukemia, at the aged of 48.

I’ve included the studio recording, a “live” version, the Smokie version, and, finally Dolly Parton singing the song live.  I hope you enjoy at least one of them!

Studio recording

A “sort of” live version

Just When I Needed You Most

Randy VanWarmer

You packed in the morning, I stared out the window
And I struggled for something to say
You left in the rain without closing the door
I didn’t stand in your way
Now I miss you more than I missed you before
And now where I’ll find comfort, God knows
‘Cause you left me just when I needed you most
Left me just when I needed you most
Now most every morning, I stare out the window
And I think about where you might be
I’ve written you letters that I’d like to send
If you would just send one to me
‘Cause I need you more than I needed before
And now where I’ll find comfort, God knows
‘Cause you left me just when I needed you most
Left me just when I needed you most
You packed in the morning, I stared out the window
And I struggled for something to say
You left in the rain without closing the door
I didn’t stand in your way
Now I love you more than I loved you before
And now where I’ll find comfort, God knows
‘Cause you left me just when I needed you most
Oh yeah, you left me just when I needed you most
You left me just when I needed you most

Source: Musixmatch

Songwriters: Van Warmer Randall Edwin

Just When I Needed You Most lyrics © Wb Music Corp., Terraform Music

Smokie version

Dolly Parton version

17 thoughts on “Song Lyric Sunday – 17 January 2021 – Just When I Needed You Most

  1. This is such a great song. It always slays me! I’d never seen Randy singing his song. So had he died so young. Also had never heard Smokie’s version!!! I don’t even think I’d ever heard of Smokie!!! That was cool. And SOOOO bummed! I LOVE Dolly Parton but that vid wouldn’t play for some reason! This was cool, Peter. Thank You for All! Happy Sunday!!! 💕💕💕

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Randy wrote this heartbreaker when he was 18. He was inspired by a girl who dumped him when he was at his most vulnerable, because his father had just died in a car crash. He was on his way to work in Denver, Colorado when his car broke down and these memories came back to him. Nice choice Peter.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. One of my all-time fav well-seasoned songs! I’ve only heard Randy’s version…been listening to it since 1979…it ALWAYS makes me cry.
    I’ve not heard the other versions…thank you for sharing them, Peter! Now Smokie’s version will be a fav!
    Great song choice, Peter!
    (((HUGS))) 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Forgot all about that song, though listening to it I could remember exactly the state(heartbroken) I was in when it was released. Thank goodness my life improved markedly in the ensuing years.

    Liked by 2 people

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