Daily Top Five: Long Songs

a-hundred-miles-or-more-kraussReader Buddy Noel suggested a Daily Top Five of “Songs DJ’s used for bathroom runs”, citing “El Paso” by Marty Robbins as an example.

What are your five favorite long songs?

Here’s my list:

  1. Iris Dement, “No Time to Cry”
  2. Dixie Chicks, “Top of the World”
  3. Alison Krauss, “Jacob’s Dream”
  4. Alan Jackson, “Blue Ridge Mountain Song”
  5. Kathy Mattea, “There Were Roses”

Weird that all five songs involve death, with a total body count of seven between them.

Characters in a country song should get very nervous when their track passes the four minute mark.


  1. American Pie – Don McLean (8:33)

    Taxi – Harry Chapin (6:43)

    Hotel California – Eagles (6:29)

    Lyin’ Eyes – Eagles (6:23)

    New York Minute – Eagles (6:38)

  2. Charlie Daniels – “Saddle Tramp” (10:55)
    Jason Boland & The Stragglers – “Change In The Weather” (10:31)
    Marty Robbins – “Faleena (From El Paso)” (8:19)
    Alan Jackson Feat. Zac Brown – “Dixie Highway” (7:25)
    Rose’s Pawn Shop – “Debt Collector” (7:25)

  3. My five:

    1. LONG ROAD OUT OF EDEN–The Eagles (10:31)
    2. JUST LIKE TOM THUMB’S BLUES–Linda Ronstadt (7:58)
    3. LIKE A ROLLING STONE–Bob Dylan (6:10)
    4. HEY JUDE–The Beatles (8:30)
    5. MACARTHUR PARK–Richard Harris (8:00)

    Rule of thumb: No good/great song is too long; and no bad song (read: bro country) is short enough (IMHO).

  4. 1. “Farmer’s Luck” -Jason Boland & the Stragglers (6:47)
    Worth every second to tell the tale of his grandfather’s farmland being taken to make way for Eufaula Lake in central Oklahoma and the side of eminent domain rarely portrayed.

    2. “Devil, Devil (Prelude: Princess of Darkness” -Eric Church (8:03)
    Technically the first three minutes is an intro, but it’s a hell of a statement. He makes sure to play it at all his live shows.

    3. “I Wonder” -Wade Bowen (6:45)
    After trying to place the voice on this duet, I finally figured out her name is Jessica Murray, wife of former Departed member Seth James. Worth the extra time to see how two people from across the bar notice each other and decide whether or not to make a move.

    4. “Stupid Boy” -Keith Urban (6:16)
    Something about the long drawn out emotional ending and jam session Keith Urban puts on at the end of the this self-imposed lament makes it hard to forget he didn’t actually write it.

    5. “Looking for a Good Time” -Sean McConnell (5:50)
    One of the most underrated songwriters in the Red Dirt scene. Later recorded by David Nail on his debut album, something about the songwriter’s version is always more genuine.

  5. @Andrew

    The reason “Change in the Weather” is so long is because there’s a hidden track tucked at the end of the song

  6. Keith Urban – Stupid Boy (6:22)
    Zac Brown Band – Free (6:44)
    Kenny Chesney – The Boys of Fall – (6:35)
    Patty Loveless – You’ll Never Leave Harlan Alive (6:06)
    Robert Earl Keen – The Road Goes On Forever (7:45)
    (live from Austin version – 11:58)
    In the days of vinyl, we used Alabama – My Home’s in Alabama (6:22) for everything from making coffee to getting chewed out for what you said in the last break.

  7. 1. Sara – Fleetwood Mac (over 6 min)
    2. Don’t Cry – Seal (over 6 min)
    3. Shine – Dolly Parton (over 5 min)
    4. Someone Saved My Life Tonight – Elton John (over 6 min)
    5. Tonight Tonight Tonight – Genesis (not sure but album version is really long)

  8. 1. Drive-By Truckers–The Three Great Alabama Icons
    DBT has a bunch of longer songs, but this is one of my favorites. Patterson Hood delivers an unflinching spoken history of Bear Bryant, George Wallace and Ronnie Van Zant, from the point of view of someone that admits it took them a long time to understand Alabama and the culture Hood was raised in.

    2. Jamey Johnson–High Cost of Living
    A brilliant exploration of the self-destruction that lies inside so many men. Johnson’s studio band, especially the steel guitar is awesome throughout the song as Johnson explores how a feeling of emptiness can lead men down dark, dangerous and depressing roads. Best of all, you get the strong impression that Johnson knows first hand about every line he sings in this song.

    3. Jamey Johnson–Can’t Cash My Checks
    Johnson tackles the struggles of the modern, small American farmer. Making no money in spite of working hard and living life “the right way”, the character in Johnson’s song is forced to grow marijuana so put some actual money into his pocket. Johnson’s backing band pulls out the Southern Rock sound to wrap the song up.

    4. Chris Knight–Down The River
    The fiddle breaks in this song are haunting, just like Knight’s tale of murder.

    5. Whiskey Myers–Broken Window Serenade
    Another tale of self-destruction, this time by a woman who falls into a meth addiction and works as a stripper on the edge of town. Told from the perspective of the childhood friend whose unrequited love never seemed to fade.

  9. 1. “This Is Love”: Mary Chapin Carpenter (6:12)
    2. “Dear John”: Taylor Swift (6:46)
    3. “Masterpiece Theatre III”: Marianas Trench (6:43)
    4. “Ever After”: Marianas Trench (6:34)
    5. “Top Of The World”: Dixie Chicks (6:01)

  10. 1. Garth Brooks, “Ain’t Going Down (‘Til The Sun Comes Up)”
    2. Dwight Yoakam, “Fast As You”
    3. Patty Loveless, “How Can I Help You Say Goodbye”
    4. Arlo Guthrie, “Alice’s Restaurant”
    5. Mary Chapin Carpenter, “Quittin’ Time” (The live version from Party Doll and Other Favorites )

  11. I made sure my songs were at least 5 minutes long so that the DJ would be sure to have time to wash his hands too.:)

    1. Vince Gill, “Words Apart” (5:44)
    2. Gretchen Peters “Breakfast at Our House” (6:27)
    3. Sturgill Simpson, “It Ain’t All Flowers” (6:44)
    4. Patty Griffin, “Ohio” (5:12)
    5. Nickel Creek, “The Fox”– live version from their GH album (9:20)

  12. An interesting idea for a top five. It it’s over five minutes, I consider it a long song.

    1. Brad Paisley – “Welcome to the Future” (5:52)
    2. Randy Rogers & Wade Bowen – “El Dorado” (5:06)
    3. Vince Gill – “Threaten Me With Heaven” (5:30)
    4. Wade Bowen – “Watch Her Drive” (6:25)
    5 . Gary Allan – “Puttin’ My Misery on Display” (6:07)

  13. 1. Our Town: Iris DeMent (5:01)
    2. Cover Me Up: Jason Isbell (4:54)
    3. Ballad of a Runaway Horse: EmmyLou Harris (5:35)
    4. Farmer’s Luck: Jason Boland & The Stragglers (6:47)
    5 (A). Travelin’ Soilder: The Dixie Chicks (5:42)
    5 (B). Where Were You: Alan Jackson (5:05)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.