Daily Top Five: Story Songs

George JonesToday’s Daily Top Five was suggested by reader caj:

What are your favorite story songs?

Here are mine:

  1. The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia  (Vicki Lawrence, Reba McEntire)
  2. Independence Day (Martina McBride)
  3. He Stopped Loving Her Today (George Jones)
  4. Three Wooden Crosses (Randy Travis)
  5. Lucille (Kenny Rogers)


  1. 1. Chris LeDoux – “Silence On The Line”
    2. Garth Brooks – “In Lonesome Dove”
    3. George Strait – “Drinkin’ Man”
    4. Tom Russell – “Tonight We Ride”
    5. Chris LeDoux – “The Borderline”

  2. 1. The Road Goes On Forever-Robert Earl Keen/The Highwaymen
    2. A Boy Named Sue–Johnny Cash
    3. A Week In The County Jail–Tom T. Hall
    4. Alabama Pines–Jason Isbell
    5. Puttin’ People On The Moon-Drive By Truckers

  3. I love “Three Wooden Crosses” but I’ll still list 5 other story songs:
    1. Daddy’s Oldsmobile – Hal Ketchum. Written by Hal & David Mallett, it’s about a family living out of a car, moving from town to town looking for work during the Depression
    2. Lisa Brokop’s “Pearl” tells about the daughter of a drunk abusive father, who escaped him to sing the blues. Lisa co-wrote the song with Kim McLean.
    3. Emerson Drive’s “Moments” tells about a homeless man saving a young man from committing suicide. It was written by Dave Berg and Sam and Annie Tate.
    4. Steve Azar’s “Waitin’ On Joe”, solely written by Steve, is about a friend who always kept him waiting and died trying “to beat that morning train”. There was also a great video with Morgan Freeman doing the intro and conclusion.
    5. Big and Rich’s “Faster Than Angels Fly” about a young couple killed in a barrio by a street gang “out to make a retribution call”. Written by Billy Henderson and John Phillips.

  4. 1. George Strait Check Yes Or No
    2. Trisha Yearwood She’s In Love With The Boy
    3. Reba Fancy
    4. Reba Is There Life Out There
    5. Dixie Chicks Wide Open Spaces

  5. Everybody’s taken all the good ones! :(
    Well, I’ll give this a shot…

    1. “Loretta Lynn’s Lincoln”: Josh Turner
    2. “She Don’t Love You”: Eric Paslay
    3. “Colder Weather”: Zac Brown Band
    4. “The Secret”: David Nail
    5. “Live Oak”: Jason Isbell

  6. Wow, that was fast. Thanks. I’ll go with some classics

    1. Ode To Billy Joe – Bobbie Gentry
    2. I Was There – Statler Brothers
    3. Coat of Many Colors – Dolly Parton
    4. Harper Valley PTA – Jeannie C Riley
    5. Class of ’57 – Statler Brothers

  7. Chris Cagle – One Boy, One Girl
    Kathy Mattea – Where Have You Been
    Highwaymen – Desperados Waiting For a Train
    Willie Nelson – Red Haired Stranger (I prefer the who suite)
    James Taylor – Sweet Baby Jane

  8. 1) El Paso – Marty Robbins
    2) The Battle of New Orleans – Jimmy Driftwood
    3) Harper Valley PTA – Jeannie C Riley
    4) Ballad of Ira Hayes – Johnny Cash
    5) Big Bad John – Jimmy Dean

  9. The greatest story song in country music history is “El Paso.” The Marty Robbins classic is perfection in every way.

    1. Lyin’ Eyes (Eagles) – my FAVORITE song of all time
    2. Coward of the County (Kenny Rogers)
    3. Stealing Kisses (Faith Hill)
    4. Humble Me (Norah Jones)
    5. All Too Well (Taylor Swift)

    6. Let That Pony Run (Pam Tillis)
    7. I Guess You Had To Be There (Lorrie Morgan)
    8. Young Love (The Judds)
    9. Just A Dream (Carrie Underwood)
    10. Gone Crazy (Alan Jackson)
    11. Stronger Than I Am (Lee Ann Womack)

  10. 1.The Road Goes on Forever (2005 live album version from Robert Earl Keen is the best.)
    2. I Can Still Make Cheyenne George Strait
    3. Wagon Wheel OCMS (I hated Rucker’s version before I knew of OCMS’s existence!)
    4. A Boy Named Sue Johnny Cash
    5. El Cerrito Place Charlie Robison (Kenny butchered it.)

  11. My five:

    1. A BOY NAMED SUE–Johnny Cash
    3. THE BATTLE OF NEW ORLEANS–Johnny Horton
    4. BIG BAD JOHN–Jimmy Dean
    5. ONE PIECE AT A TIME–Johnny Cash

  12. Too many to choose from and my favorites could change day from day depending on my mood. I do have stay with the classics for this theme.

    1. Old Dogs, Children, & Watermelon Wine – Tom T. Hall
    2. Harper Valley PTA – J. Riley
    3. Coat of Many Colors – Dolly
    4. Down From Dover – Dolly
    5. Cold Hard Facts of Life – Porter Wagoner
    6. Reuben James – Kenny Rogers
    7. Coal Miners Daughter – Loretta Lynn
    8. Joshua – Dolly
    9. 80’s Ladies – KT Oslin
    10. The Year Clayton Delany Died – Tom T. Hall

  13. oh, and one bonus album cut that I just can’t get out of my mind for some reason…
    The Stranger – Kenny Rogers (written by D. Parton)

  14. Tom P, I love Down From Dover (and Mountain Angel) from Dolly Parton. I’ve never had the privilege of hearing the original version, but I love the one on Little Sparrow. I think I read where Porter Wagner told Dolly that she would never make it in the business if she continued to write songs like that. Boy, was he wrong.

  15. So many good ones already taken!

    Okay, here are 5 no one’s said yet:
    1. She Took the Wind From His Sails – George Strait
    2. Good Directions – Billy Currington
    3. Smoky Mountain Rain – Ronnie Milsap
    4. Whiskey Lullaby – Brad Paisley/Alison Krauss
    5. Time Marches On – Tracy Lawrence

    And now for 5 I would have used if they weren’t already taken!
    1. He Stopped Loving Her Today – George Jones
    2. Colder Weather – Zac Brown Band
    3. I Can Still Make Cheyenne – George Strait
    4. Drinkin’ Man – George Strait
    5. Three Wooden Crosses – Randy Travis

  16. Six I didn’t see listed:

    1-The Grandpa That I Know-Patty Loveless
    2-You’ll Never Leave Harlan Alive-Patty Loveless
    3-The Dreaming Fields-Matraca Berg
    4-Strawberry Wine-Matraca Berg
    5-Waiting on June-Holly Williams
    6-Five Minutes-Gretchen Peters

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