Yesterday’s Songs

Yesterday's Songs: August 15, 1992

August 15, 2008 // 32 Comments

This feature is back upon popular request.  Today, we'll look back at the top twenty country singles from sixteen years ago.  For the writers of this site, the nineties are considered a golden age in country music.  In 1992, the genre was nearing its commercial peak, and some of the greatest artists of that era were coming into their own.    However, there was still quite a bit of chaff among the wheat. Top 20 Country Songs August 15, 1992 #20 “You and Forever and Me” Little Texas This is the prototypical early nineties country ballad, one part Alabama and two parts Restless Heart.   There was always a faceless quality to the harmonies of Little Texas, and there's nothing particularly distinctive about their material here, either.  C #19 “Two-Timin' Me” The Remingtons There's a quaint charm to this single, by a band that never quite made an impact. But in the Read More

Yesterday’s Songs: November 23, 2002

November 23, 2007 // 4 Comments

Looking back five years, this list will feature artists that are more familiar to recent country fans than those on earlier features.    I was impressed overall by the quality of the entries here, and I remember 2002 being my favorite country music year since the mid-nineties.    Unfortunately, things were going to go downhill fast, but a list where even Rascal Flatts has a song I like is no small feat. Top 20 Country Songs November 23, 2002 #20 “The Impossible” Joe Nichols A worthy breakthrough hit for this neo-traditionalist, his understated delivery is refreshing. A- #19 “The Good Stuff” Kenny Chesney A modern classic and a signature hit for Chesney, it was still hanging in the top twenty after thirty weeks. A+. #18 “19 Somethin’” Mark Wills A laundry list of pop culture from the seventies and eighties.   This stuff makes for great VH1 specials, but as Read More

Yesterday's Songs: August 12, 1995

August 12, 2007 // 4 Comments

This list was an interesting trip down memory lane. This particular top twenty has my personal favorites from Brooks & Dunn, George Strait and Pam Tillis, alongside singles I’d completely forgotten about from Vince Gill, Clint Black and Diamond Rio. The breakthrough hits from Shania Twain, Bryan White and David Lee Murphy are here, along with the sole moments of glory from Perfect Stranger and James House. If you’re wondering why the list looks a bit different, I’ve added download links if they’re available. Just click on the song title! Top 20 Country Songs August 12, 1995 #20 “You Better Think Twice” Vince Gill This year’s hall of fame inductee warns a woman of the man she’s falling in love with, and his cheating, heartless ways. B. #19 “Finish What We Started” Diamond Rio A pretty ballad that showcases their harmonies, it was a bit too sluggishly paced to rise Read More

Yesterday’s Songs: July 20, 1991

July 24, 2007 // 8 Comments

No wonder I got into country music in 1991. What an awesome collection of songs. I could actually enjoy country radio if this is what was in the rotation! Sorry this is four days late, but there was no way I was going to find a new list for July 24 when this collection was so damn good. Top 20 Country Songs July 20, 1991 #20 “Small Town Saturday Night” Hal Ketchum Ketchum’s breakthrough hit is a detail-laden celebration of the mundane social lives of small town teenagers. He didn’t write it, but it’s so intelligent it’s hard to believe he didn’t. Witness the explanation that the world is flat, and drops off sharp at the edge of town, because “when people leave town, they never come back.” A #19 “Hopelessly Yours” Lee Greenwood & Suzy Bogguss Greenwood’s last top ten hit was Bogguss’ first, and she elevates the proceedings Read More

Yesterday’s Songs: July 4, 1998

July 4, 2007 // 3 Comments

Four years after the first list, some of the names have changed and so have the sounds. Notice the crossover flavor of this list? We’ve still got one foot in country music but it’s standing on a banana peel. Top 20 Country Songs July 4, 1998 #20 “I Said a Prayer” Pam Tillis Pam rocked the top twenty for the last time, introducing the world to songwriter Leslie Satcher in the process. One of her catchiest hits. B+ #19 “If You Ever Have Forever in Mind” Vince Gill All smooth style and jazzy charm. Vince takes his time and reels us in. B #18 “Happy Girl” Martina McBride Bright, bubbly, smartly written. A tad overproduced, but not a single note oversung. B #17 “Just to Hear You Say That You Love Me” Faith Hill featuring Tim McGraw Their voices blend together nicely, but there’s no disguising the fact that this Read More

Yesterday’s Songs: June 25, 1994

June 25, 2007 // 3 Comments

Here’s a feature I’ve been wanting to start for a long time, since the good folks at Entertainment Weekly do it so well with the pop charts. How do yesterday’s hits sound today? Lets’ take a look back to the hit parade from thirteen years ago today. Top 20 Country Songs June 25, 1994 #20 “That’s My Baby” Lari White Lari White would eventually score her first of three top ten hits with this breakthrough single, which is so light and fluffy that it is hard to even take seriously. C- #19 “It Won’t Be Over You” Steve Wariner A clever kiss-off number that I’d completely forgotten about. Wariner just might be the king of forgotten hits. B #18 “How Can I Help You Say Goodbye” Patty Loveless A three-act masterpiece that rivals “Where’ve You Been” in the pantheon of heartbreaking country story songs. As poignant today as it’s ever Read More