Story Behind the Song: Garth Brooks, ‘Two of a Kind, Workin’ on a Full House’

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By The Boot Staff  theboot.com

In the late 1980s, Warren Haynes was living in Nashville and writing with various songwriters. He had just ended his time playing lead guitar in David Allan Coe‘s band and was years away from joining the Allman Brothers Band, founding Gov’t Mule and becoming a successful solo artist. And Haynes and his co-writers, Bobby Boyd and Dennis Robbins, didn’t know it, but their creative frustrations one day would turn into the song “Two of a Kind, Workin’ on a Full House.”

Robbins himself recorded the tune in 1987, and his version charted on the Billboard country charts, but it became a major hit when Garth Brooks recorded it for his 1990 No Fences album, and released it as the record’s third single. “Two of a Kind” became Brooks’ fifth consecutive No. 1 song.

Below, Haynes tells The Boot about how he and his co-writers came up with “Two of a Kind, Workin’ on a Full House.”

I was living in Nashville at the time, co-writing with other songwriters. That’s how that song came about: We were in the process of working on a song, and one of the writers had a bunch of ideas written down, but he didn’t have a title or a chorus. He just had the beginning stages.

I asked if I could look at his notepad, and I looked at all the lyrics he had jotted down, and one was “Two of a Kind, Working on a Full House.” I kind of circled it and said, ‘That is the song. That’s what we need to write.’ We had to start from scratch with some of the lyrical ideas he already had and incorporate them into “Two of a Kind, Working on a Full House.”

It was just one of those moments. Once we honed in on the actual idea, it came together in a few hours. A lot of times, some of the best songs come about that way. They either happen really quickly, or they take forever; there is very seldom any middle ground.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eh2l5gNuvbg