Hard To Say – Dan Fogelberg | Top 40 Chart Performance, Story and Song Meaning

Chart Performance:  Pop (#7) & Adult Contemporary (#2); 1981

Story Behind The Song By Ed Osborne

Dan was born to Lawrence Fogelberg, the leader of a big band later immortalized in one of Dan’s hits, and Margaret Irvine, a trained opera singer. Later his grandfather gave him an old Hawaiian slide guitar. Then, in the wake of the British Invasion, Dan formed his own band, The Clan. He studied art at the University of Illinois, however, the siren call of music haunted him and he began playing his own songs at a folk music club called the Red Herring. Dan’s big break came when Irving Azoff, an U of I grad who’d helped launch REO Speedwagon’s career, brokered a record deal for Dan. Five of Dan’s first six albums racked up platinum plus numbers, yet, he only logged one hit single in five years; Longer (#2; 1980). His next move was unprecedented for an artist without a string of Top 10’s. Dan released a double album, The Innocent Age, which, in turn, generated four Top 20 singles. The second, Hard To Say, featured the Eagles‘ Glenn Frey on harmony vocal.

This content and all Song Meaning articles were created and written by Top 40 Contributing Editor Ed Osborne. © 2024 Ed Osborne. All Rights Reserved. In addition to these song meaning articles, Ed has written our “Year in Music 1960s-1990s” articles.

Produced by:

  • Dan Fogelberg
  • Marty Lewis

Lyrics Written by:

  • Dan Fogelberg