"I'd Love to Lay You Down" (2002)
With his naturally resonant vocal timbre and fluid runs, Singletary was an obvious descendent of country's most distinctive stylists, from George Jones and Merle Haggard to the ultra-smooth croon of Conway Twitty. In 2002, Singletary made those connections even more explicit when he cut Twitty's 1980 chart-topper "I'd Love to Lay You Down" for his mostly-covers LP That's Why I Sing This Way, which also featured versions of songs made famous by Buck Owens and Lefty Frizzell, among others. Singletary didn't do any radical overhauls of Twitty's hit with his recording, which would peak at Number 43. Then again, he didn't really need to do anything differently – Singletary's warm delivery, like a gentle caress atop the song's unhurried rhythmic stride, sold those romantic promises just as convincingly as consummate loverman Twitty ever did. J.F.