My Kind of Country

Country music from a fan's point of view since 2008

Tag Archives: Billy Currington

Week ending 8/12/17: #1 singles this week in country music history

1957 (Sales): Bye Bye Love — The Everly Brothers (Cadence)

1957 (Disc Jockeys): Bye Bye Love — The Everly Brothers (Cadence)

1967: I’ll Never Find Another You — Sonny James (Capitol)

1977Rollin’ With The Flow — Charlie Rich (Epic)

1987: One Promise Too Late — Reba McEntire (MCA)

1997: Carrying Your Love With Me — George Strait (MCA)

2007: Never Wanted Nothing More — Kenny Chesney (BNA)

2017: Body Like a Back Road — Sam Hunt (MCA)

2017 (Airplay): Do I Make You Wanna — Billy Currington (Mercury)

Week ending 6/10/17: #1 singles this week in country music history

1957 (Sales): A White Sport Coat (and a Pink Carnation) — Marty Robbins (Columbia)

1957 (Jukebox): A White Sport Coat (and a Pink Carnation) — Marty Robbins (Columbia)

1957 (Disc Jockeys): Four Walls — Jim Reeves (RCA)

1967: It’s Such a Pretty World Today — Wynn Stewart (Capitol)

1977Luckenbach, Texas (Back to the Basics of Love) — Waylon Jennings (RCA)

1987: I Will Be There — Dan Seals (EMI America)

1997: It’s Your Love — Tim McGraw with Faith Hill (Curb)

2007: Good Directions — Billy Currington (Mercury)

2017: Body Like a Back Road — Sam Hunt (MCA)

2017 (Airplay): In Case You Didn’t Know — Brett Young (Republic Nashville)

Week ending 6/3/17: #1 singles this week in country music history

1957 (Sales): Gone — Ferlin Husky (Capitol)

1957 (Jukebox): A White Sport Coat (and a Pink Carnation) — Marty Robbins (Columbia)

1957 (Disc Jockeys): A White Sport Coat (and a Pink Carnation) — Marty Robbins (Columbia)

1967: It’s Such a Pretty World Today — Wynn Stewart (Capitol)

1977Luckenbach, Texas (Back to the Basics of Love) — Waylon Jennings (RCA)

1987: It Takes a Little Rain (To Make Love Grow) — The Oak Ridge Boys (MCA)

1997: Sittin’ On Go — Bryan White (Asylum)

2007: Good Directions — Billy Currington (Mercury)

2017: Body Like a Back Road — Sam Hunt (MCA)

2017 (Airplay): Hurricane — Luke Combs (Columbia)

Week ending 10/22/16: #1 singles this week in country music history

images-111956 (Sales): Don’t Be Cruel/Hound Dog — Elvis Presley (RCA)

1956 (Jukebox): Don’t Be Cruel/Hound Dog — Elvis Presley (RCA)

1956 (Disc Jockeys):Crazy Arms — Ray Price (Columbia)

1966: Open Up Your Heart — Buck Owens (Capitol)

1976: You and Me — Tammy Wynette (Epic)

1986: Just Another Love — Tanya Tucker (Capitol)

1996: Believe Me Baby (I Lied) — Trisha Yearwood (MCA)

2006: Would You Go With Me — Josh Turner (MCA)

2016: Setting the World on Fire — Kenny Chesney featuring Pink (Blue Chair/Columbia)

2016 (Airplay): It Don’t Hurt Like It Used To — Billy Currington (Mercury)

Week ending 10/15/16: #1 singles this week in country music history

hqdefault-91956 (Sales): Don’t Be Cruel/Hound Dog — Elvis Presley (RCA)

1956 (Jukebox): Don’t Be Cruel/Hound Dog — Elvis Presley (RCA)

1956 (Disc Jockeys):Crazy Arms — Ray Price (Columbia)

1966: Blue Side of Lonesome — Jim Reeves (RCA)

1976: The Games that Daddies Play — Conway Twitty (MCA)

1986: Both to Each Other (Friends & Lovers) — Eddie Rabbitt with Juice Newton (RCA)

1996: Believe Me Baby (I Lied) — Trisha Yearwood (MCA)

2006: Would You Go With Me — Josh Turner (MCA)

2016: Forever Country — Artists of Then, Now & Forever (MCA)

2016 (Airplay): It Don’t Hurt Like It Used To — Billy Currington (Mercury)

Week ending 1/9/16: #1 singles this week in country music history

Red-Sovine1956 (Sales): Sixteen Tons — Tennessee Ernie Ford (Capitol)

1956 (Jukebox): Love, Love, Love — Webb Pierce (Decca)

1956 (Disc Jockeys): Sixteen Tons — Tennessee Ernie Ford (Capitol)

1966: Giddyup Go — Red Sovine (Starday)

1976: Convoy — C.W. McCall (MGM)

1986: Have Mercy — The Judds (RCA/Curb)

1996: Rebecca Lynn — Bryan White (Asylum)

2006: Must Be Doin’ Somethin’ Right — Billy Currington (Mercury)

2016: Die a Happy Man — Thomas Rhett (Valory)

2016 (Airplay): Die a Happy Man — Thomas Rhett (Valory)

Week ending 6/6/15: #1 singles this week in country music history

johndenver1955 (Sales): In The Jailhouse Now — Webb Pierce (Decca)

1955 (Jukebox): In The Jailhouse Now — Webb Pierce (Decca)

1955 (Disc Jockeys): In The Jailhouse Now — Webb Pierce (Decca)

1965: What’s He Doing In My World — Eddy Arnold (RCA)

1975: Thank God I’m A Country Boy — John Denver (RCA)

1985: Don’t Call Him A Cowboy — Conway Twitty (Warner Bros.)

1995: Summer’s Comin’ — Clint Black (RCA)

2005: Making Memories Of Us — Keith Urban (Capitol)

2015: Girl Crush — Little Big Town (Capitol)

2015 (Airplay): Don’t It — Billy Currington (Mercury)

Album Review: Dean Dillon – ‘Perfect Day’

51OoCtrTu4L._SS280Unlike it predecessor Dylyn, which featured Dean Dillon’s interpretations of songs that were hit for other artists, Perfect Day features a track listing that is largely new to most listeners, with the exceptions of the title track, which had been previously cut by Billy Currington and “West Texas Town”, which Dillon had previously recorded as a duet with George Strait for the latter’s 2008 collection Troubadour. A western swing number, “West Texas Town” is by far the best track on the album, which is, unfortunately, mostly a lackluster effort. I suspect the songs are whatever were left over after bigger names laid claim to Dillon’s better efforts. They are mostly mid tempo numbers that by themselves aren’t bad, but put together do not result in an album that is greater than the sum of its parts. That along with Dillon’s limitations as a vocalist make for a rather tedious listening experience.

Whenever I’m listening to recordings by an artist who is primarily known as a songwriter, I can’t help but imagine how the songs might sound if sung by someone else. Not surprisingly, it isn’t too hard to imagine George Strait singing most of them. The opening track, “She Ain’t Right” is in the vein in some of Garth Brooks’ rowdier efforts. It’s one of the few uptempo numbers but the lyrics are unfortunately rather cliche-ridden.

Perfect Day is far from a perfect album, but it does have its enjoyable moments: the aforementioned “West Texas Sound”, “Out Here Livin’ Life”, the upbeat “Colorado” and “I Ain’t Her Cowboy”, which is reminiscent of Strait’s “I Can Still Make Cheyenne” (which Dillon did not write).

As far as I can tell, Perfect Day is a digital-only release, which means that inexpensive used CD copies are not available. There isn’t enough I like about it to recommend paying full price to download the entire album, but fans might consider downloading a few individual tracks. Spotify users can also listen to it there.

Grade: B-

Week ending 8/16/14: #1 singles this week in country music history

john-michael-montgomery1954 (Sales): I Don’t Hurt Anymore — Hank Snow (RCA)

1954 (Jukebox): I Don’t Hurt Anymore — Hank Snow (RCA)

1954 (Disc Jockeys): I Don’t Hurt Anymore — Hank Snow (RCA)

1964: Dang Me — Roger Miller (Smash)

1974: Rub It In — Billy “Crash” Craddock (ABC)

1984: That’s The Thing About Love — Don Williams (MCA)

1994: Be My Baby Tonight — John Michael Montgomery (Atlantic)

2004: Live Like You Were Dying — Tim McGraw (Curb)

2014: Burnin’ It Down — Jason Aldean (Broken Bow)

2014 (Airplay): We Are Tonight — Billy Currington (Mercury)

Week ending 10/19/13: #1 singles this week in country music history

davis sisters1953 (Sales): I Forgot More Than You’ll Ever Know — Davis Sisters (RCA)

1953 (Jukebox): Hey Joe!— Carl Smith (Columbia)

1953 (Disc Jockeys): I Forgot More Than You’ll Ever Know — Davis Sisters (RCA)

1963: Love’s Gonna Live Here — Buck Owens (Capitol)

1973: Ridin’ My Thumb To Mexico — Johnny Rodriguez (Mercury)

1983: Paradise Tonight — Charly McClain with Mickey Gilley (Epic)

1993: What’s It To You — Clay Walker (Giant)

2003: Real Good Man — Tim McGraw (Curb)

2013: That’s My Kind Of Night — Luke Bryan (Capitol)

2013 (Airplay): Hey Girl — Billy Currington (Mercury)

Jonathan Pappalardo’s Top Ten Singles of 2011

While 2011 was a bland and boring year for mainstream country music where anthems to dirt roads, tales about being someone’s honey bee, and odes to plastic party accessories were all over the radio, it did feature some bright spots. There was even one artist I thought was so constantly strong, two of their singles made my top ten for the year. I would’ve added this person’s latest as a third, but two in one top ten is more than enough.

So in addition to complaining about those songs that seem to have taken country music off track, let’s take a moment and celebrate what was good about country music in 2011. And judging by my list, you have to remember that just because a song spent four or five weeks at #1, doesn’t mean it’s of good quality. So here’s my list of favorite songs, all released as singles in 2011.

I’ll have the rest of my list, numbers 11-45, on my own blog later this month.

10. Randy Houser – “In God’s Time”

The balance between religion and spirituality in American popular culture is often shaky – there are those who believe in the teachings derived from texts and others who choose to let a higher power guide them, but don’t necessarily tie it to a particular faith. As there are those who happily merge the two.

Houser’s tale of letting life work itself out by surrendering to a greater force is the ultimate definition of spirituality, the study of the soul. In realty, “Time” is a fundamental lesson in how to live your life – “But no one knows, not you or me, it might be tomorrow or it might never be. Oh, but don’t lose faith. Put it in His hands. ‘Cause it might be that He might have a bigger plan. Than you had in mind. Miracles happen, in God’s time.”

Very rarely does a singer emerge from the shadows to clearly leave their mark by just a song, but Houser has here. Not only is he among the greatest living of all country singers, but also he may be the best trying to have chart success today.

“Time” is nothing short of a masterpiece, a classic and iconic statement from a living profit. Problem is, Houser occupies his time with distracting southern rock – a decision marking his downfall. If he only understood that he was put here to create songs like this, he would sour into the heavens, and fill the shoes of the ilk in his wake.

Read more of this post

2011: The 75-(per)cent report

School buses are back on the roads and the leaves are already starting to fall on the roads here in southern Ohio. Crisp nights are upon us, and as we head into final months of 2011, I’m revisiting my growing playlist of my favorite songs and albums released in the first three-quarters. No waxing or pondering on the fate of what’s popular this time, these are just some of my favorite releases of the year, in no particular order, combined with a few words to tell you why in some cases.  Be sure to share your top picks for the 3/4 of the year so far in the comments.

Albums

Sunny Sweeney – Concrete … As I said in my review, if this became the sounding board for all future female country albums, we’d all be better off.

Terri Clark – Roots and Wings … Though it’s not as strong as her previous effort, Clark’s latest, and its lack of airplay, is another page in the long indictment against country radio.  I’d be the first to welcome her back with this material.

Pistol Annies – Hell On Heels

George Strait – Here For A Good Time

Connie Smith – Long Line of Heartaches … Traditional country and classic themes performed by one of country music’s finest singers. A can’t-miss combination.

Chris Young – Neon

Ronnie Dunn – Ronnie Dunn … The Brooks & Dunn frontman hasn’t reached his full potential as a soloist yet – I think he’s still too unsure of himself – but this is a helluva start.

Blake Shelton – Red River Blue

… and on the not-so country side:

Lucinda Williams – Blessed

Adele – 21

Lori McKenna – Lorraine

The Decemberists – The King Is Dead 

Songs

Bradley Gaskin – “Mr. Bartender”

Kenny Chesney & Grace Potter – “You and Tequila”

Pistol Annies – “Lemon Drop”/”Trailer For Rent” … I can’t pick a favorite among these two on the album.

Ronnie Dunn – “Cost of Living”

George Strait – “Here For a Good Time”/”Poison” … It’s been said before, and better, but I really like the title track to Strait’s latest album. And I think “Poison” is one of his finest moments.

Sunny Sweeney – “Staying’s Worse than Leaving”/”Amy”

Billy Currington – “Love Done Gone”

Taylor Swift – “Back to December”/”Mean”

Lucinda Williams – “I Don’t Know How You’re Living”

Week ending 4/2/11: #1 singles this week in country music history

1951: The Rhumba Boogie — Hank Snow (RCA)

1961: Don’t Worry — Marty Robbins (Columbia)

1971: After The Fire Is Gone — Conway Twitty & Loretta Lynn (Decca)

1981: Texas Women — Hank Williams, Jr. (Elektra/Curb)

1991: Loving Blind — Clint Black (RCA)

2001: One More Day — Diamond Rio (Arista)

2011: Let Me Down Easy — Billy Currington (Mercury)

Week ending 9/18/10: #1 singles this week in country music history

1950: I’m Movin’ On — Hank Snow (RCA)

1960: Alabam — Cowboy Copas (Starday)

1970: For All The Love Of Sunshine — Hank Williams Jr. with the Mike Curb Congregation (MGM)

1980: Lookin’ For Love –Johnny Lee (Full Moon/Asylum)

1990: Jukebox In My Mind — Alabama (RCA)

2000: That’s The Way — Jo Dee Messina (Curb)

2010: Pretty Good At Drinkin’ Beer — Billy Currington (Mercury)

Single Review: Jason Rogers – ‘Remembering The Good Ones’

Canadian-born Jason Rogers is still waiting for that big breakthrough in the U.S.  This isn’t it. ‘Remembering The Good Ones’ isn’t going to light the world on fire, nor is it even likely to propel Rogers to stardom outside his native land.  It’s still a solid song that would play well on U.S. country radio.

The singer made the move to Nashville in 2004 and shortly afterwards formed the family-owned BlueBuck Records before he had even recorded his first song.  “I’m always thinking ahead”, he told me in our conversation a couple weeks ago. But even with the best plans, things move slowly on Music Row. Fast forward to May 2009, when Rogers released his self-titled debut under the BlueBuck imprint.  The album’s first single, ‘It Ain’t Braggin’, soared to the top 10 on Canada’s newly re-instated Cashbox charts.  In August 2009, Rogers was signed as a flagship artist for the new Cashbox label.  The album was then re-released under both labels, with physical distribution across North America, and digitally at nearly every mp3 retailer from iTunes to Wal-Mart.

After his initial top 10 success, Rogers has released the album’s second single, a pleasant slice of smooth country music, sold mostly with daily living platitudes and an overall laid-back look at life.  ‘Remembering The Good Ones’ tells of the common man, and those who honor their memories after they’ve passed.  Soldiers, factory workers, and cowboys are idealized, while lawyers and politicians are the liars and cheats.  It’s a competent country song, and the production is adequately sparse.  On the self-penned track, Rogers reaches for some notes he can’t quite get ahold of in the song’s bridge, but other than that, ‘Remembering The Good Ones’ is practically without flaw, and he sells it convincingly. The song would sit nicely alongside similar-themed songs from Billy Currington or Alan Jackson.

Grade: B

‘Remembering The Good Ones’ is widely available, including here at amazon. You can also purchase the entire album, and read more about Jason Rogers at his official site.

ACM Awards: My Kind Of Country’s predictions

It’s award time again, with the Academy of Country Music due to hand out its trophies for achievements during 2009 on Sunday April 18. Here are our predictions of the likely winners:

ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR
This category is fan-voted this year (as it has been for the last couple of years). This year, though, the number of nominees has been substantially increased.

Kenny Chesney
Toby Keith
Brad Paisley
George Strait
Taylor Swift: our unanimous pick
Carrie Underwood
Keith Urban
Zac Brown Band

Occasional Hope: Fan-voted. No further comment required.
Razor X: Since this is a fan-voted award, the only two serious contenders are Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood. Underwood won last year, and since Swift has had a more successful year, I’m going to predict that the momentum is in her favor.
J.R. Journey: I think she’s ahead of the pack in this race by a large enough margin to safely call her the early winner. With it being fan-voted yet again, Taylor’s younger, internet-savvy fan-base would give her the edge even if she didn’t already have it.
Meg: Taylor will get it due to fan voting, and it’s not as though she hasn’t worked equally hard as the other nominees, or harder.

TOP MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
Kenny Chesney
Brad Paisley: J.R., Meg
Darius Rucker: Occasional Hope
George Strait: Razor X

Keith Urban

Meg: Brad’s got this one. He’s come into his own as a performer, writer, and entertainer with great musicianship and great vocals.
J.R.: Major tours, a critically acclaimed album and an impressive run of chart-topping singles are just Brad’s commercial qualifications for his victory here. When he wants to be, he’s also a mighty fine statesman and torch-bearer for traditional country.
Razor: After three consecutive wins in this category for Brad Paisley, I’m guessing that the Academy will want to give this award to someone else this year. Urban is the only serious competition.
OH: If Darius wins it will be seen as a surprise victory, but I think he just could get it. He does have an interesting tone, has scored some big radio hits, and sold exceptionally well. And it all seems to be about commercial impact these days. Plus, you need at least one surprise at any award show.

Read more of this post

Week ending 3/20/10: #1 singles this week in country music history

1950: Chattanoogie Shoe Shine Boy — Red Foley (Decca)

1960: He’ll Have To Go — Jim Reeves (RCA)

1970: The Fightin’ Side of Me — Merle Haggard (Capitol)

1980: My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys — Willie Nelson (Columbia)

1990: Hard Rock Bottom of Your Heart — Randy Travis (Warner Bros.)

2000: How Do You Like Me Now — Toby Keith (DreamWorks Nashville)

2010: That’s How Country Boys Roll — Billy Currington (Mercury)

Album Review: Easton Corbin – ‘Easton Corbin’

I’ve become somewhat jaded in the past few years and no longer expect to like new artists trying to break into mainstream country music. Country radio has gotten so bad, I haven’t listened to it in over two years. As a result, I’m not always up to date on the latest crop of new artists. I’d read a little bit about Easton Corbin on some of the other country blogs, but after hearing about his traditionalist leanings, I avoided reading too much about him until I could hear his music for myself and form my own opinion.

I initially cringed upon learning that Corbin’s debut single was titled “A Little More Country Than That”, expecting it to have come directly out of Jason Aldean’s playbook. It was a relief to learn that this wasn’t another redneck anthem. Instead of a defiant declaration of Southern pride and boasting about his tractor and pickup truck, Corbin makes use of the imagery of rural living while making a declaration of love (and possibly a proposal) to his sweetheart. In some respects, it is reminiscent of the Charley Pride classic “All I Have To Offer You Is Me”. Clearly tailor-made for radio, it’s a pleasant if somewhat fluffy song with slightly cliched lyrics. Written by Rory Lee Feek, Don Poythress, and Wynn Varble, it’s not a song that makes the listener stop in his or her tracks and listen, but it’s better than what is typically offered on country radio these days.

The album was produced by Carson Chamberlain, who has also produced Mark Wills and Billy Currington, but I won’t hold that against him since he has written some of my favorite Alan Jackson songs. Chamberlain had a hand in writing six of the album’s eleven songs, while Easton himself co-wrote four. The production choices are stellar; I can’t remember the last time I heard the pedal steel featured so prominently on a mainstream artist’s debut release. Corbin and Chamberlain don’t pander to radio’s current pop leanings and wisely avoids the production excesses that have marred so many contemporary country releases.

Corbin has been criticized for sounding too much like George Strait, and the similarities in their vocal styles is undeniable. Many of the songs, such as “Someday When I’m Old” and “Don’t Ask Me About A Woman” sound as if they came from the Strait catalog. “Someday When I’m Old”, written by Nashville tunesmiths Chris Lindsey, Aimee Mayo and Troy Verges is my favorite song on the album and “A Lot To Learn About Livin'” written by Liz Hengber, Sonny LeMaire and Clay Mills, is an example of a beach song done properly. Kenny Chesney, please take note. On the other hand “I Can’t Love You Back” doesn’t quite work. The lyrics are somewhat problematic and a bit confusing:

Girl, I love you crazy
It comes so easy, after all we had
I could love you with all my heart
But the hardest part is
I just can’t love you back

The first time I heard the chorus, it didn’t make sense to me. I thought why can’t he love her back, thinking that “love you back” meant “love you in return.” It wasn’t until the second verse that I finally realized that the protagonist’s love interest is gone, and Easton is lamenting that he can’t bring her back, which might have been a better way to phrase the sentiment.

Overall, the album is pleasant, but not particularly memorable. The material is mostly lightweight and the album would have benefited from the inclusion of one or two more substantial songs, as well as a little more variety in tempo. Corbin will also have to develop a more distinctive vocal style in order to avoid being dismissed as a George Strait wannabe. I have no doubt that he can do this; after all, Clint Black was mistaken for Merle Haggard when his first single hit the airwaves, and Owen Bradley was reluctant to sign Loretta Lynn because she sounded too much like Kitty Wells. That didn’t stop Black or Lynn from successfully developing their own styles. If Corbin can do the same, and can find some weightier material the next time around to build upon this solid debut, he has the potential to become a huge star in his own right.

Grade: B

Year In Review: Megan Morrow’s Top 10 singles of 2009

Looking at my list it becomes very apparent that the best singles don’t always make it to country radio. There are songs on various albums that I like much more but that were never released. That said, here are some of the songs that I find myself humming and still enjoying at the end of 2009.

10. Welcome to the Future – Brad Paisley (June)
Musically, this one had to grow on me, even though it has some great licks between phrases. At the same time, the lyrics jumped out at me from the get-go. I’m probably going to be the only one with this one on my list for sure, but this is another one that spoke to me in the midst of the huge shifts in our country’s landscape. Watching the elections and the inauguration reminded me of watching the Berlin Wall come down – something I didn’t know I’d ever see in my lifetime. Welcome to the future.

9. A Little More Country Than That — Easton Corbin (July)
Our local station started playing this one right after its release last summer with the tag that it’s sung by Easton “I’m-Not-George-Strait” Corbin. If you weren’t paying attention though, you’d almost think it was George! And not only does Easton have a great laid-back easy country vocal, but it fits the song to a T with lyrics like:

Imagine a dirt road full of potholes
With a creek bank and some cane poles catchin’ channel cat
I’m a little more country than that
.

It’s a proposal that lets her know just who she’s getting “under this ol’ hat”. Just a great, simple, easy country song, that’s appropriately produced. Love it! Others must, too – it just rolled into the Top 20.

8. Big Green Tractor – Jason Aldean (May)
Yup. I’m going to admit I like this one. Not sure why, but it makes me smile. Not only does the tractor never break ground, but the song probably doesn’t either. Yet it’s a charming, catchy and sweet love song that paints a great picture that fits us Nebraska folks out here in corn country. It’s Jason’s second release from his 2009 album Wide Open and stayed at #1 for several weeks.

7. White Liar – Miranda Lambert (August)
Acoustic  and steel guitar on a cheating song with a burning lyric of a strong woman calling out the cheat himself and dropping her own bombshell. Doesn’t get much more country than that!

6. Cowgirls Don’t Cry – Brooks & Dunn f. Reba (Feb.)
The digital re-release of this one featuring Reba makes this a possibility for my 2009 list. With some great fiddle, a good story and Ronnie’s vocals, topped off by Reba’s heart-felt last verse, it just got to me. Granted the character in the song loses her dad, but having lost my mom in 2008 it struck a chord for me. That’s part of what I love about country music in general – its power to touch and heal.

5. Living For the Night – George Strait (May)
Love George’s interpretation of this one. He captures that absent, empty kind of feel that missing someone is all about. And then there’s the fact that he and his son wrote it together with Dean Dillon. The lyrics are straight forward yet speak volumes:

Everyday’s a lifetime without you
Hard to get through, since you’ve gone
So I do the only thing I know how to to get by
I’m living for the night.

4. People Are Crazy – Billy Currington (March)
Written by Bobby Braddock and Troy Jones, ‘People Are Crazy’ is Billy’s second single from his 2008 album, Little Bit Of Everything, and is nominated for a Grammy in two categories. It’s probably my favorite story song of the year due to its humorous way of making the point that we all share the most basic common denominators: God is great, beer is good, and people are crazy.

3. Consider Me Gone – Reba McEntire (July)
Though I loved ‘Strange’, her first single from her first album with Valory (April 09), Reba’s second single has become even more of a favorite. Reba calls it a “strong woman’s song” and that it is. Like Sugarland’s ‘Settlin’’, Reba’s character isn’t going to settle either. She lets her lover know in those powerful Reba vocals that

If I’m not the one thing you can’t stand to lose
If I’m not that arrow to the heart of you
If you don’t get drunk on my kiss
If you think you can do better than this
Then I guess we’re done
Let’s not drag this on
Consider me gone.

This one went number one on the Billboard chart this week, making Reba’s 24th trip to the top.

2. Solitary Thinkin’ — Lee Ann Womack (April)
The second single from her Grammy nominated album, Call Me Crazy, and more bluesy jazz than straight country, ‘Solitary Thinkin’ stood out on radio this year as an example of less is more. Lee Ann’s vocals are subtle and embody that smoothness that everything takes on when you’re doing some solitary drinkin’ and thinkin’.

1. High Cost of Living – Jamey Johnson (March)
This one actually got released, but was a bit too dark, rough and long for much radio play. Earthy and honest, pointed and powerful, it’s the best country song of the year in my book.

Who will win the CMA Awards

cma_awards_2009We shared our wishlist for this year’s CMA awards with you of last week. Now for the hard part – this is where we go out on a limb and try to predict who will actually walk home with a CMA award this year. We collectively sucked at prediction the last time we tried it, but we hope to do better this time – although we’d be happy to be wrong in some cases.

ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR

  • Kenny Chesney
  • Brad Paisley: Chris, J.R. Journey, Meg, Occasional Hope, Razor X
  • George Strait
  • Taylor Swift
  • Keith Urban

We all want Brad to win this category, and it looks like we all think he will.

J.R.: This is the hardest one to predict, because I think it could go either way with Brad or Taylor, and maybe even Chesney again. But my money is on Brad.
Razor: I think it may be Paisley’s turn this year. Chesney, Urban and Strait haven’t done anything too exciting during the past year and I just can’t conceive that the award would go to Swift under any circumstances.
OH: I really think it’s Brad’s turn to take home the trophy. I think the voters will feel that it’s his turn, plus he’s had a good year commercially. There is an outside chance they might give it to Taylor Swift as it has been a great year for her commercially, they’ll want to give her some recognition of that, and making her Female Vocalist would rightly attract derision. Especially if she sings live on the telecast.

MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR

  • Kenny Chesney
  • Brad Paisley: Chris, J.R. Journey, Occasional Hope
  • Darius Rucker: Razor X
  • George Strait: Meg
  • Keith Urban

J.R.: I just think it’s Brad year.  I expect a Paisley and Jamey Johnson sweep at the ceremony.
Razor: I’ll go with the new face in the crowd on this one.
Meg: I think George will win this one due to a good year vocally and as an echo to the Artist of the Decade.

Read more of this post