The 30 Day Song Challenge: Day 20

Today’s category is…

A Song You Used to Hate But Now You Don’t.

Here are the staff picks:

Leeann Ward: “What Was I Thinkin'” – Dierks Bentley

When this song was making its chart run, I didn’t like it at all. Apparently, my ears were clogged then. About three years ago, I suddenly realized that I loved it. How couldn’t I love it, especially with Randy Kohrs’ riveting slide guitar action?

Dan Milliken: Bass Down Low” – DEV featuring the Cataracs

When I first heard this recent hit, I thought it was the filler-iest of Top 40 filler. It may still actually be. But like Napoleon Dynamite gained comic value from the quoting craze it inspired, “Bass Down Low” has gained guilty-pleasure value for me from the way the hook sneaks into my head at times when I’m standing around doing nothing. Repetition works wonders.

Tara Seetharam: “Umbrella” – Rihanna featuring Jay-Z

I found it completely inane the first two or three times I heard it…and then, just like that, I couldn’t get enough. I still love the song to this day; there’s something strangely majestic about it.

Kevin Coyne: “Sloop John B” – The Beach Boys

My dad played this song on the jukebox incessantly, driving me crazy every time I heard it. Now it’s a song that I treasure, understanding how him being in the navy helped make it more relevant to him. Plus it’s catchy as all get out.


  1. Patty Loveless “Nothin’ But The Wheel”. I hated it when I was a teenager. I was into the upbeat country then, but now the sad songs are what i like, Iit is now one of my favorite songs of all time!

  2. “Breathe” by Faith Hill. It got so overplayed on radio stations of all kinds (country, Top 40, AC, etc.) during the end of 1999 and on into 2000 that it got genuinely boring to listen to after the ten thousandth or so spin (exaggerating for effect here). Nowadays, even though I’m far from being a Faith Hill fan, this song has regained a lot of its appeal for me, in part due to the prominent acoustic guitar in it.

  3. “Yeah!” – Usher (feat. Ludacris and Lil Jon)

    I used to think that it was just another club song with no real value. Well, maybe it is. But it does make me want to move every time I hear it. Usher and Ludacris do their thing and Lil Jon produces a hot beat that will make you want to dance.

    Fun pop trash at its best.

  4. First one that comes to mind is Carrie’s “Undo It.” When it first came out, I thought it was the most stupid, inane (not to mention grammatically-awkward) pop-country throwaway that I had ever heard, but it slowly began to reel me in through catchiness. Then when I got to see Carrie in concert this past December, something must have snapped inside of me, because there I was, up out of my seat, clapping my hands and loudly singing “You stole my happy, you made me cry…!”

    The song isn’t currently in my iTunes, but it just might find it’s way there eventually. At any rate, it’s probably safe to say that I no longer hate it.

  5. …, i’m not sure that carrie could make me sing: “…you stole my happy…” from the top of my lungs, ben, but another carrie song has grown on me a lot over time and i’d even go as far as calling it a landmark-song: “before he cheats”.

  6. Brad Paisley – “Ticks”

    I remember the first time I heard this song. I thought, from the title, that it was about a clock. I got up to the first chorus and didn’t listen to it again for a week…and then I played it over and over…

  7. “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Gladys Knight and The Pips – strangely enough, it was a remake that enabled me to appreciate her version of the song – Marvin Gaye’s remake. His version enabled me to appreciate the essence of the song and to reassess her version. I still prefer Marvin’s version, one of the all-time R&B performances, but I now like her version too.

  8. I thought “We R Who We R” was one of the most obnoxious things I’d ever heard the first few times I listened to it. It probably still is, but I’ve come to embrace it’s trashiness since.

  9. “These Boots Are Made for Walking” by Nancy Sinatra. Haven’t heard it in over 40 years and I have no desire to hear it again but I no longer hate it.

  10. Carrie Underwood’s “Wasted”. It’s a great song to me now but back when it was first released I hated hearing it because it was so overplayed along with her other music. It’s strange how songs seem to get better after a couple of years.

  11. “Kerosene,” Miranda Lambert. The relentless beat drove me nuts when I heard on radio. Couldn’t even hear the lyrics through the noise. Saw the video one day and paid attention to the lyrics, too. Thought the video was great, but not sure about the music. It grew on me. Maybe because I love revenge songs.

  12. Sara Evan’s smash that returned her to fame was not the one I was hoping for, “A Little Bit Stronger” was such a disappointment after her great single from the Billy: The Early Years movie (“Low”), so I found this to be a cheap emotionless performance. However, after about 3 weeks the song found its way into my head, and it has remained one of my favorite songs by Sara ever since.

  13. “Give It Away” – George Strait

    I didn’t care for this one at all at first, but it’s really grown on me.

  14. As a kid I hated the Eagles of all things, then suddenly when I hit 19 I discovered they had a lot of great stuff. Always thought it was odd that I ever hated them.

    As for a country song, the latest one I can say has grown on me –and I know some will skewer me for this–is Taylor Swift’s “Mean”. Didn’t like it beyond the instrumentation at first, but now I’m singing along. Not the greatest song by any means but it’s caught my fancy somehow.

  15. Carrie Underwood- “Wasted”- I couldn’t stand it when it was on the radio. Now I think it’s one of her best.

  16. All Carrie Underwood songs. They eventually grew on me. Brad Paisley on the other hand still hasn’t grown on me.

  17. Heaven Bound by Jamey Johnson, as well as “That’s How I Don’t Love You Anymore” from the same album. I thought they were the only bad songs on the double album upon first listen, but the more I listened, the more I liked them.

  18. Most pop songs, particularly Bruno Mars. Can’t say that I love him, but The Lazy Song has gotten catchier and less annoying over the multiple times I’ve heard it.

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