How strong a year for country music was 1993? Well, if our Best Albums list revealed how many great artists were overlooked, our Best Singles list reveals why there is so little room at the inn. Out of the forty singles ranked among our best, all but five reached the top twenty of the Billboard country singles chart. Ten of them made it all the way to #1, and another nine of them stopped at #2. Country radio in 1993 was good. Our list kicks off today with the first ten entries of the top forty. We’ll reveal ten more every day until we get to the top of the list on Tuesday. Under each entry, you’ll see each single’s peak position on the Billboard chart and the individual ranking for each writer who included it on their own top forty list. #40 “On the Road” Lee Roy Parnell Written Read More
On the first day of the new month, we’re asking you to share your favorite first singles from an album or compilation. Here’s my list: Trisha Yearwood, “Wrong Side of Memphis” Pam Tillis, “Deep Down” Tim McGraw, “Please Remember Me” Sawyer Brown, “Cafe on the Corner” Dixie Chicks, “Not Ready to Make Nice”
Regular posts, including single reviews, will begin again tomorrow. In the meantime, today’s Daily Top Five is perfect for the day in question. What are your five favorite country songs about being a dad? It can be the experience of being the father or being the child, or just songs that you like that don’t bear much relation to your actual relationship with your father or your child. Here’s my list: Sawyer Brown, “The Walk” Reba McEntire, “The Greatest Man I Never Knew” Alan Jackson, “Drive (For Daddy Gene)” Loretta Lynn, “They Don’t Make ‘Em Like My Daddy” Doug Supernaw, “I Don’t Call Him Daddy”
So with the site up and running again, we’re back to work. What better way to kick things off than with a Daily Top Five of your favorite songs about work? Here’s my list: Sawyer Brown, “Cafe on the Corner” Alabama, “40 Hour Week (For a Livin’)” Dolly Parton, “He’s a Go Getter” Martina McBride, “Goin’ to Work” Aaron Tippin, “I Got it Honest”
Today’s Daily Top Five is loosely inspired by reader PSUMucci. What are five singles that should’ve been hits? They could be songs that ended up signature tunes for their act despite not being hits, or could not have made any impact at all. For my top five, I stuck to artists who were having some radio success at the time these songs were released. Here’s my list: Trisha Yearwood, “Where are You Now” David Nail, “The Sound of a Million Dreams” Sawyer Brown, “Another Side” Faith Hill, “Stealing Kisses” Lorrie Morgan, “I Just Might Be”
It was a powerful song with empathetic feminism, the sort of solidarity with women that you usually don’t hear from men in cowboy hats. It cut through their cartoonish persona and showed that they could be incisively insightful. This was no small feat given it was the follow-up to “Save a Horse (Ride a Cowboy)”, which had established that persona in the first place.
I’ve only recently discovered the Most Played feature on iTunes, since it never had any relevance until iPods were large enough in memory to sync all of my music. So going back to early 2011, I have a lengthy list of the songs I’ve played the most.
At first, they were the very embodiment of a valid reason to suspect the credentials of TV singing contest winners. But over time, they became one of the most thought-provoking and substantial country music bands.
Sawyer Brown began as the backing band for Don King, who had a handful of minor country hits in the late seventies and early eighties. When King stopped touring in 1981, the band decided to strike out on their own. The original lineup of Mark Miller, Bobby Randall, Joe Smyth, Gregg Hubbard, and Jim Scholten named themselves Sawyer Brown after the Nashville street where they often rehearsed.
And so we come to the end. The top of our list includes a wide range of artists singing a wide range of country music styles. Thematically, these entries are diverse, but what they all have in common is what has always made for great country music. They are all perfectly-written songs delivered with sincerity by the artists who brought them to life.
400 Greatest Singles of the Nineties: #25-#1
Smoke Rings in the Dark
1999 | Peak: #12
A dark, atmospheric wonder, as Allan delivers the final eulogy for a love that couldn’t help burning out. – Dan Milliken
Just to See You Smile
1997 | Peak: #1
Being deeply enamored of someone can make it easy – even appealing – to forfeit your own well-being. This single’s sunny sound reflects the persistent affection pulsing through its protagonist, but its story demonstrates the heartbreak to which such unmeasured selflessness leads. – DM
The themes of love and loss have permeated country music for as long as it’s been in existence. This second-to-last batch of great nineties hits contains songs that are direct descendants of well-known classics like “Can the Circle Be Unbroken” and “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry”, along with a Shania Twain hit that would have made Roba Stanley smile.
400 Greatest Singles of the Nineties: #50-#26
Here’s a Quarter (Call Someone Who Cares)
1991 | Peak: #2
From the first forceful guitar strum on, this kiss-off number somehow manages to seem unusually cool and collected in its own aggression. You get the impression that Tritt’s character has been anticipating this moment, and has already determined that he’s going to relish every second of it. – Dan Milliken
I’ve Come to Expect it From You
1990 | Peak: #1
This is about as dark and bitter as George Strait gets. It’s a coat that he wears well. – Kevin Coyne