I admit it. I was “that guy”; the one who would tell anyone who would listen, “I love all kinds of music…except Country.” I would then follow that up with “What do you get when you play a Country song backwards? Your wife back, your job back, your truck back, your dog back…..yuck, yuck, yuck.” That all changed when I started dating Linda.
A Polk County, Florida, born and raised girl, Country music is mostly what she listened to. As we spent more and more time together I slowly realized that gee, some of this stuff isn’t bad. Then one day she played Keith Urban’s Making Memories of Us and I was hooked.I thought it was one of the most beautiful love songs I’d ever heard. Listening to it for the umpteenth time on the ride home from one of our dates, I promised myself that one day this would be the song we would dance to at our wedding. On December 1st, 2012, I kept that promise.
As I began to listen to more and more Country music artists, it began to sink in; I’ve liked Country music all along. You see, I’ve long been a fan of artists like Jimmy Buffett, The Allman Brothers, John Fogerty along with the whole Southern Rock genre. Listen to any of this music and the roots to Country music will be crystal clear.
Now that I’ve confessed the error of my ways, let me try to get the rest of you haters to stick your toe in the Country music pool. Here are some of my favorite Country music songs along with links to their YouTube videos and a brief explanation why I like them:
Artist: Eric Church
Song: Jack Daniels
Why I like it: After seeing Church perform live with Kenny Chesney, The Eli Young Band and Kacey Musgraves, I must confess, I have a man-crush on this guy. He stole the show with his performance of this song. Any fan of great guitar licks will find themselves hooked on this one.
Best line from the song: “I’ve thrown a punch or two and gave a few black eyes, but Jack Daniels kicked my ass again last night.”
Artist: The Pistol Annies
Song: Hush Hush
Why I like it: The lyrics of this song about not sharing family secrets around the Christmas dinner table is hilarious! I dare you to listen to this song and tell me that your toe wasn’t tapping half way through.
Best line from the song: “Well cheers to the vodka Mama’s been sneaking, let’s all gather round and pray.”
Artist: George Strait
Song: Check Yes or No
Why I like it: My sister, Layla, recently introduced me to this song. She said it was the song that got her hooked on Country music and I totally get it. I don’t know why, but this sweet song about puppy love (and then adult love) always chokes me up.
Best line from the song: “Do you love me, do you want to be my friend?….Check ‘yes’ or ‘no’.”
Artist: Kenny Chesney
Song: I Go Back
Why I like it: In this song, Chesney sings about, how when he hears songs that were popular when he was growing up, it takes him back to those memories.
Best line from the song: “We all have a song that somehow stamped our lives, takes us to another place and time.”
Artist: Zac Brown Band
Song: Knee Deep
Why I like it: From their velvety harmonies to their outstanding musicianship, the Zac Brown Band brings it. How could you not like a song with the line “only worry in the world is the tide gonna reach my chair?” Check out the opening mandolin solo on this song.
Best line from the song: “Mind on a permanent vacation, the ocean is my only medication. Wishin’ my condition ain’t never gonna go away.”
I’m swimming in the Country music pool. Come join me; the water’s fine.