Remember the time Olivia Newton-John dipped her toes in the country pool? YouTube

From the time she came upon the scene in 1971, Olivia Newton-John has been a worldwide sensation. Australia, Canada, the U.K. and the U.S. were all on board often and early.

Yet, it was Music City that initially gave her the break she needed in the states.

Olivia’s fascination with the country music genre dominated the beginning of her career, with songs such as “Country Girl” and “Take Me Home Country Roads.”

After taking home the CMA Female Vocalist of the Year award in 1974, Olivia Newton-John took the title track “Have You Never Been Mellow” to the top of the U.S. country charts the very next year. Eventually, the song turned out to be her second consecutive No. 1 hit on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 and also helped her popularity in the pop world, peaking at No. 3 on the pop charts. As if that weren’t enough, the song also garnered the gorgeous Aussie a Grammy nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal performance.

Just think, Olivia was still three years away from taking the role of Sandra Dee in the legendary movie “Grease” and donning some country threads in “Xanadu.”

Based in Chicago but often in Nashville, Ken Churilla is a contributor for Rare Country. Follow him @KenChurilla and join the conversation @RareCountry.
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