The best of songs, the worst of songs.

What if we based our opinion of every singer on his or her worst song?

– George Jones would be known for “I’m a People,” not “He Stopped Loving Her Today.”

– Randy Travis couldn’t get through an interview without being asked about “I’ll Be Right Here Loving You.”

– Every Dolly Parton retrospective would begin and end with “Drunkenstein.”

– Jamey Johnson’s lasting legacy would be “Honky Tonk Badonkadonk” and “Rebelicious.”

– We’d never let Miranda Lambert live “Over You” down.

Now, can I tell you a secret?

That’s kind of already how things work.

You can’t try to sell us one or two bad songs without undermining, in a subtle but important way, the trust you’ve built with all the others. If everything else you do is wonderful, the times you failed to impress might end up as minor blips on the radar. But they’ll still be blips, even years down the road. We’ll still remember what you’re capable of – good and bad – and approach anything you offer with the caution you’ve taught us.

Even if you’re just filling space around presumptive singles, every song matters. Better choose carefully.

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  1. Evan says

    This makes me think of Trace Adkins… For each There’s a Girl in Texas or Every Light in the House is On, there’s been a Brown Chicken, Brown Cow or Badonkadonk as well…

    • says

      He was my first thought as well. The scary thing is while “There’s a Girl in Texas” is why I like him, stupid stuff like “Honkytonk Badonkadonk” is why everyone else I know does.

  2. says

    This judging by the worst is why my husband and I have such differing opinions of Alan Jackson. He’s fond of him for the neo-traditional songs. Me, I look at the steady stream of crap like “Chattahoochie”, “Summertime Blues,” “Where I Come From,” etc (plus his much more recent tragically-dead-woman songs) and have a hard time appreciating him at all.

  3. says

    George Jones would be known for “I’m a People,” not “He Stopped Loving Her Today.”

    And George & Tammy would be known for “The Ceremony,” not “Golden Ring” or “Two Story House.”

  4. Mike Wimmer says

    Gary Allan would be known for “Tough Little Boys”. Sorry, never liked that song for him, it’s just too sappy for his voice/image.

  5. says

    “I’m a People” is pretty bad, but I’d say Jones’s worst is “Old King Kong”. “Old King Kong was just a little monkey compared to my love for you”. Really? And while we’re on the Georges, Strait would be known for “Don’t Make Me Come Over There and Love You” or “We Really Shouldn’t Be Doing This”.

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