Today we continue our countdown of our top 50 songs of the year with songs 40-21!
40: Wonder, Megan Moroney – Love shouldn’t be a guessing game is the resounding message throughout Wonder. Tired of relationships that left her feeling empty, Moroney understands that when the real thing comes along it won’t make her wonder whether it will stick around. Moroney’s heartfelt vocal helps elevate Wonder to another level landing it at #40 on our list.
39: This Side of a Dust Cloud, Morgan Wallen – This Side of a Dust Cloud marks Wallen’s first entry on our countdown. The bonus track to Wallen’s Dangerous, is one of the album’s finest moments. On This Side of a Dust Cloud Wallen finds himself on the left side of leaving for a change. Wallen is used to doing the leaving so it is not hard for him to put himself in the girl’s shoes and come to the realization that she’s not coming back.
38: Damsel in This Dress, Gray Robinson – Maybe in the best use of word play all year, Damsel in This Dress is a shining moment for Gray Robinson. Damsel in This Dress is centered around a girl waiting for a guy to show up and he just doesn’t so she’s left all alone “in this stupid restaurant” looking her best. What truly sets this song apart is the subtle twist in the final chorus where instead of being a Damsel in This Dress, Robinson realizes that even though her date didn’t show she looks “damn good in this dress” and that is something she is proud of regardless of outside validation.
37: Your Drinkin’, My Problem, Carly Pearce: Your Drinkin’, My Problem marks Pearce’s first appearance on our countdown at #37. Your Drinkin’, My Problem is Pearce at her sassy and confident self. Filled with disgust and regret Pearce is pleading with a guy to stop making his drinking her problem and instead find another outlet or someone else to bother.
36: Want It Again, Thomas Rhett- Want It Again, was the perfect kickstart to Rhett’s Country Again era. Want It Again, tells the story of a heartbroken guy that can’t seem to move on, so instead of doing so he keeps heart free for his ex hoping that one day she’ll Want It Again, and it turns out she does!
35: All About It, Dylan Marlowe: Dylan Marlowe is deep in love on All About It. Marlowe is willing to do anything and everything to stay in this bliss. The piano ballad allows Marlowe’s vocal to steal the show with the bridge being the songs finest moment of lyricism and vocals.
34: Don’t Cry, Morgan Wade: The pure, raw emotion of Don’t Cry is the perfect encapsulation of Morgan Wade as an artist. Tackling issues like depression and anxiety sets Wade and Don’t Cry apart from the rest of country music. Don’t Cry marks Wade’s first entry on our countdown at #34.
33: T-Shirt, Runaway June: The runaway winner for sassy song of the year, T-Shirt is a hilarious take on the moved on stage on breaking up. The second verse is one sure to leave listeners laughing and the infectious hook is memorable and T-Shirt is a sure hit should it ever hit radio.
32: Cowboys and Dreamers, Carter Faith: Opposites attract is a theme present throughout Cowboys and Dreamers. Throughout the song Faith details the differences between the two groups but despite these difference there are enough similarities to build a true love story.
31: Longer Than She Did, Cody Johnson- Longer Than She Did marks Johnson’s first appearance on our countdown at #31. A fun take on heartbreak, Johnson is lost after a short relationship and knows that the time he spends picking up the pieces will be longer than the relationship itself when all is said and done.
30: Shuffle, Laci Kaye Booth: It’s hard not to be mesmerized by Laci Kaye Booth’s voice, but if you dig deeper you realize the lyrical content matches the beautiful voice. Shuffle is a great example of this, as throughout the song Booth compares her made mood changes to various country songs and warns this guy that he’s “in trouble” because her “heart’s on shuffle” and you never know what song may come next.
29: She’s Mine: Lauren Weintraub: It’s hard to fit so much emotion into a three minute window, but Lauren Weintraub found a way. Heartbroken after a break up, Weintraub’s world is grinded to a halt by the idea of the new girl that’s with her ex. Weintraub is caught wondering what there relationship is like and why she simply wasn’t enough by comparison.
28: Why I Can’t Leave, Conner Smith: The classic small town dilemma isn’t much of a dilemma for Conner Smith. Similar to Morgan Wallen’s More Than My Hometwon, on Why I Can’t Leave, Smith isn’t willing to leave behind the town he loves to chase the girl he loves; and while his town may never be enough for her and it’s the only place he can see himself setting down.
27: Wonderin’ Bout The Wind, Morgan Wallen- The best use of imagery on Dangerous, Wonderin Bout The Wind features Wallen comparing love to the wind and wondering why, like the wind, his love only comes around “now and then” and then vanishes. Wonderin’ Bout The Wind is another shining moment on Dangerous and the #27 song on our countdown.
26: All The Whiskey in the World, Carly Pearce: Carly Pearce and songs about alcohol just mix well. All The Whiskey in the World shows off a confident and moved on version of Pearce who acknowledges that while she’s already happy, for this guy not even All Whiskey in the World can help him drown out her memory and what they shared.
25: Dispatch to 16th Ave., Muscadine Bloodline: Muscadine Bloodline has a message for music row. Saddened by seeing artists stripped of their creativity and individualism, Muscadine Bloodline beautifully explain the tough choice many young artists face between adapting or learning to swim on their own.
24: Three Chords and a Lie, Larry Fleet– Sometimes blissful ignorance is necessary when love falls apart, Three Chords and a Lie is a pretty good if this idea in action. Fleet ignores rumors that his girlfriend is cheating on him and lying to him by brushing them off with lines like “must’ve been a girl that looks just like she does”. While, this false reality will eventually come crashing down on Fleet, for now he has found a temporary happiness in this lie.
23: That’s What I’ve Been Told, Riley Green: That’s What I’ve Been Told is Green’s finest work as a storyteller to date. Recounting many of the lessons instilled in him either through teaching or experience, Green comes to the final heartbreaking lesson, if he lets this girl go she isn’t coming back, and while Green hopes this is false , that’s what he’s “been told”.
22: Heart Like Mine, Parker McCollum: “It’s easier to miss you than it is to let you down”, On Heart Like Mine, McCollum finds love but his fear of commitment messes everything up. McCollum knows that everything about this relationship was perfect but his fear of letting her down was simply to much to overcome, even if they may be two of a kind.
21: American Rust, Erenst: Love song of the year? American Rust is a stunningly beautiful small town love story. The imagery of the gas station and baseball field and the dated reference to glass bottles of coke set the scene for a “cloud of dust and a dream that’s made of American rust”. Erenst’s vocal mixed with the airy and vibrant production style land American Rust at #21 on our countdown.