No. 91: .38 Special, ‘Hold On Loosely’ – Top 100 Classic Rock Songs
With ‘Hold On Loosely,’ .38 Special and Survivor’s Jim Peterik, who co-wrote the song, captured an emotional tug of war that was instantly identifiable to every single walking, raging pack of hormones who was alive in the ‘80s, both male and female. They also earned a spot on our Top 100 Classic Rock Songs list.
The situation: you meet that amazing person and fall hard, really hard, for them. So of course from that point forward, you have to make sure that they are aware of your undying love for them, each and every day.
The next steps that follow: they either advise you that they’ve taken out a restraining order, or if they’re mellower about things, they just let you know that it would probably be a good idea to back off for a while.
So rather than get too serious right off the bat, .38 vocalist Don Barnes shares the sage advice given to him by a “girl I left some years ago,” who told him “Just hold on loosely / But don’t let her go / If you cling too tightly / You’re gonna lose control.”
Don’t get nuts — just give her that “space to breathe in” and everything will work out just fine.
‘Hold On Loosely,’ the lead track on the band’s fourth album, 1981’s ‘Wild Eyed Southern Boys,’ helped create the mold for a string of easy-going hits that the .38 members and Peterik would craft together with similar chart success. Peterik continues to write with the band to this day, and worked closely with the group on their most recent studio album ‘Drivetrain’ in 2004.
Watch .38 Special Perform ‘Hold On Loosely’