I don’t consider country among my favorite musical genres. Sure, I have a few favorites – Willie Nelson’s Red-Headed Stranger, Charlie Rich’s Behind Closed Doors – but overall, my taste is limited to chart-toppers from the mid-1970s. Recognizing my purist bent (and taking into account my present bias that 99.9% of modern country is all sizzle), I recently asked my fiancé if she could name her all-time favorite country song. After she’d finished tilting her head and squinting at me – a tell-tale sign that I’d just asked the dumbest question in the history of the world – we agreed that such a list couldn’t possibly be winnowed down to one. So we settled on 15.
Here’s what she came up with…
1. Friends in Low Places – Garth Brooks
2. Devil Went Down to Georgia – Charlie Daniels Band
3. I Cross My Heart – George Strait
4. Courtesy of Red, White & Blue – Toby Keith
5. Before He Cheats – Carrie Underwood
6. Family Tradition – Hank Williams, Jr.
7. Anymore – Travis Tritt
8. Shameless – Garth Brooks
9. Something More – Sugarland
10. Trains I Missed – Walt Wilkins and the Mystiqueros
11. My Wish – Rascall Flats
12. It’s Your Love – Tim McGraw & Faith Hill
13. Mountain Music – Alabama
14. Pontoon – Little Big Town
15. He Stopped Loving Her Today – George Jones
*Honorable Mention: Mean – Taylor Swift
In closing, I realize there’s no accounting for taste. Eye-brows will be raised (who the heck is Walt Wilkins???). More than one country music aficionado is likely to cry foul. I suspect at least one of you would walk through a Ring of Fire to add the Man in Black.
Are you a country music lover? What would you add to our list?