Category Archives: Country Pop

What Happened To The Wreckers??

the wreckersEverybody has that one album on their iPhone that transforms the “Shuffle All” button into something more like a shot of social cyanide when they’re handed the aux cord. For some people it’s Hannah Montana or Demi Lovato, but for me its Michelle Branch and Jessica Harp’s one and only album: Stand Still, Look Pretty.

The Wreckers had a short run, with very little success, but when I heard “Leave the Pieces” on the radio in February of 2006 it put me on the edge of my seat; my 12 year old self was so convinced she could relate.  The Wreckers were like, my Dixie Chicks for over a year, and when I listen to them now I still enjoy the hell out of it, I can listen to all 12 songs without being annoyed, even if deep down I know I couldn’t do that with any similar artists. They DID win a Grammy in 2006, so their music wasn’t all shame inducing. If you haven’t heard any of their music, or if you’ve only heard “Leave the pieces” and “My oh my” I strongly suggest checking out some of the other songs on that album- they’ve got some great lyrics.

They’re country-pop to the core, but strong female duos in this genre are few and far between, and I think they made a great run out of it, even if it was short and sweet. The 1950’s had The Davis Sisters, the 80’s had The Judds, the millennials have Maddie & Tae, and I had The Wreckers in 2006.

When the duo broke up in 2007 I was devastated, and I’m still secretly holding my breath waiting for them to make a comeback, as pathetic as that may be- I think because of their premature termination they get overlooked a lot- and even if I wouldn’t bump them in my buddy’s jeep on the way to 6th, I think they deserve more credit than people realize. It was definitely a poor career move on their part to split up in favor of pursuing their own solo music careers, because they’ve yet to release anything even remotely noteworthy since their split, I can’t imagine why they’d decide to split after such impressive feedback… Michelle Branch collects eggs from chickens in her backyard and Jessica’s current situation isn’t discernible, maybe she’s in “Tennessee” with the one that got away.

I hope this post leads you to rediscover (or maybe just discover) The Wreckers and their brief country music career.

“‘Cause I can guarantee / Things are sweeter in Tennessee”


Filed under Country Pop, Women

5 Best Country Sing-Along Jams

If you’ve never had a hair-flipping, bed-jumping, scream-singing dance party to country music, what have you been doing with your life? 90s and early 2000s women country singers gave so much to the pop-esque country genre. Their independent and take-on-the-world qualities make their music fun, and their love for love makes their music desirable. So grab a hairbrush to sing along because the following five songs are considerably some of the best country hits to dance around to that will make you feel like a professional while you belt them out in your room (with some sick dance moves, I’m sure…)

The Way You Love Me – Faith Hill

Honestly, does it get any better than Faith Hill? I can’t help but listen to her music and assume everything is about Tim McGraw and that makes me so happy I can hardly stand it. This song is the ultimate ode to the perfect man. This song is an accurate representation of how everyone in a relationship wants to feel. I could jump around to this song forever. Also, this video (!!!) is the greatest thing ever.

Best lyric to sing-along to: “You’re the million reasons why there’s love reflecting in my eyes”

Man! I Feel Like a Woman! – Shania Twain

Girls, this is our anthem. This song is best sung when you’re driving around with all your best girlfriends. (I can’t help but think of the scene in the Britney Spears movie Crossroads when Brit and friends belt this out on their road trip.) This might be the most poppy you can go and still be country. Shania really made herself known with this one. Girls just want to have fun and listen to Shania Twain and wear men’s shirts and short skirts.

Best lyric to sing-along to: “The best thing about a-bein’ a woman is the prerogative to have a little fun”

Suds In The Bucket – Sara Evans

This goes out to all the girls who have thought about the perfect boy that would make them drop everything to go be with him. This story about a small town teenage girl going off to be with her love regardless of the life she’s leaving behind is something that is straight from the movies. “You can’t stop love,” Sara sings and we all want to feel just that. The instrumental in this song provides for some necessary two-stepping and twirling around in cowboy boots.

Best lyric to sing-along to: “A little pony-tailed girl grown up to be a woman and she’s gone in a blink of an eye / She left the suds in the bucket and the clothes hangin’ out on the line”

Bye Bye – Jo Dee Messina

Although we love to jam out to happy, lovey songs, some of the best dance songs are the upbeat break-up ones. This one is a prime example. What’s better than screaming bye bye to the one who broke your heart? Sure, the dancing and the screaming is going to make you insanely tired but you’ll inevitably burn a lot of calories while doing so. Jo Dee sings about a man who just couldn’t make up his mind so she does it for him. You go girl. Keep doin’ you, we’re all taking notes.

Best lyric to sing-along to: “I’ve lost the game I guess / I did my best to win the part / Now I’m leaving here with what’s left of my heart”

Kerosene – Miranda Lambert

This is a complete and polar opposite song from many on this list (which is good because everybody enjoys a little variety) and is so necessary for anyone who is thinking of the perfect revenge to get on the worst of the worst who didn’t know how to treat you. Cheating is never ok, ok? Miranda totally gets revenge by setting this boy’s house on fire. “Life ain’t hard but it’s too long living like some country song,” she sings and decides to give up on love. One would deem this an appropriate statement after having your heart broken. So, don’t dance to hard to this one. (And don’t set any houses on fire…)

Best lyric to sing-along to: “Now I don’t hate the one who left / You can’t hate someone who’s dead / He’s out there holding on to someone / I’m holding up my smoking gun”

This mini-playlist is guaranteed to get you in the best mood and will provide the best dance party you’ve ever had. I’ll just go ahead and say you’re welcome — YOU’RE WELCOME.


Filed under Blog Post 3, Country Pop, Lists, Music Videos

Discovering Country songs that I didn’t know existed

I don’t know about everyone else, but there is nothing quite like discovering old music and falling in love. It seems like a simple task, but how are we suppose to know where to look if we don’t even know what we are looking for? Stumbling upon music I never knew even existed can be so exciting!

One of the songs I’m talking about is Dolly Parton’s “Jolene”. It all started one day when I was watching 90210 on Netflix (yes, judge me), and one of the characters song this beautiful song that I couldn’t get out of my head. I googled the lyrics and a couple minutes later there it was! I had no idea it was a Dolly Parton song, and that fact made me love it even more. While the song is really not suppose to be too heavy, it comes across as a deep plea to another women not to steal her man. The song was so popular at the time (1973) that many people performed covers of it. Long story short, I fell in love with it, and you should check it out, too.

Another country music song I didn’t know existed until my friend played it in her car was “If I were a Boy” by Reba McEntire. I know this song is a cover, but I still had no idea it even existed! I was so excited to hear it because Reba is such an inspiration and she sings this song so well. She adds the country “emotional” element to this song, which does it great justice. “If I were a Boy” sends a great message to men about how women really think about the things they do.

Lastly, “Busy Man” by Bill Ray Cyrus would have gone completely unnoticed by me if I had not discovered it while I was finding songs for my Buzzfeed article. In fact, a discovered quite a few songs when I was looking for the perfect one to include in my article. “Busy Man” made me feel sad. It reminds me of how people work, work, work their way through their life, but don’t ever slow down to enjoy the little moments that could mean a lot. I included it here because it’s a good reminder to enjoy life as it is and don’t take anything for granted.

 Whether it’s through a new Netflix series, friends or just by yourself, discovering new country songs can be fun. If there is one thing I’ve learned, never hesitate to show your friends new songs! You’ll never know who will fall in love with what you show them or how much a song can help get someone through a hard time.


Filed under Blog Post 3, Country Pop, Reflection, Song Analysis

Making the Most of Everything: Country Music Lessons

For every nostalgic song produced by country music, there is one that reflects on the opposite message. Living in the moment is important for everyone, especially in a time where little distractions are so common. In order to have no regrets, you have to make the most of every minute, which is a hard task. Country music always cuts to the heart of a matter, and this topic is no different. As someone in college who is trying to make the most of these four years, these songs will always have a special place. Here are five of the greatest ‘living in the moment’ country songs:

“I Hope You Dance” – Lee Ann Womack

This country pop song came out in March 2000, and won multiple awards. Lee Ann Womack reminds me of Carrie Underwood in some ways. This song is filled with hope about the future and emphasizes not letting any time go by without making the most of it. It’s hard not to feel inspired!

“Time is a wheel in constant motion always rolling us along, / Tell me who wants to look back on their years and wonder where those years have gone”

“Don’t Blink” – Kenny Chesney

If you’re a fan of Kenny Chesney, then you know that this song is one of his all-time greats. It veers away from his traditional carefree, relaxed beach vacation songs. (Beer in Mexico will always be a classic!) It is fitting that the 2007 album was titled Just Who I Am: Poets and Pirates. He tries to figure out the secret to life, and it’s pretty simple, just live! It seems like just yesterday when I first came to UT, so I definitely relate to this song.

“Trust me friend a hundred years goes faster than you think…So don’t blink”

“I Saw God Today” – George Strait

You wouldn’t think that a song about new baby would really be relatable to most college students, but it’s the general idea that any major life event creates some reflection and a desire to not let things go by so fast. George Strait released this song on his album Troubadour in 2008- considered one of the finest in his long career.

“His fingerprints are everywhere / I just slowed down to stop and stare / Opened my eyes and man I swear, I saw God today”

“You’re Gonna Miss This” – Trace Adkins

A dad who is watching his daughter grow up narrates this song. Each stage of her life brings struggles but also blessings, something everyone can relate to. When the times get too trying, it’s easy to wish you get over the hump and be past it, but there’s so much good you could miss with that kind of outlook. He stresses to her to enjoy every stage of life, because there’s always a part of it she’s going to miss.

“You’re gonna miss this / You’re gonna want this back / You’re gonna wish these days hadn’t gone by so fast”

“Live Like You Were Dying”

In my opinion, this is the ultimate song about living in the moment. I have gotten to see Tim McGraw perform this song three different times in person, and I still get goosebumps. Between the lyrics, the sound, and the way Tim McGraw sings the song, it extremely powerful. The message is clear in this 2004 hit- don’t just live life, live it to the fullest and truly appreciate every moment.

“And he said someday I hope you get the chance, to live like you were dying”

No matter the situation or circumstances, or even the phase of our lives that we find ourselves in, country music remains clear on one thing. Enjoy life and don’t take time for granted- live in the moment!


Filed under Blog Post 3, Classic Country, Country Pop, Song Analysis

What A&M and Miranda Lambert Have in Common

In 2007, Miranda Lambert released her song “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”, a classic story about an insanely jealous, gun toting ex girlfriend stalking her boyfriend and throwing things at him in a bar. All of this is completely normal, apparently. And she’s honestly kind of proud of it.

While I can’t say I really identify with Miranda in this situation, it’s still a pretty entertaining song. It’s probably how ridiculous the whole idea is that makes it so good, not many people know what its like to go to 30 bars to try and find your ex boyfriend just to get drunk and throw things at him. But yet it’s so easy to picture it happening that listeners can still relate to it. It also helps to realize what not to do after a breakup, no matter how bad the other person messed up.

We all have some sort of crazy ex though; the one that just can’t seem to get over you. Most likely you haven’t been stalked and assaulted by your ex, but there’s always that one that’s just a little crazy. Usually it just means they can’t stop calling or texting you or even the ones that keep showing up in your life trying to get back with you.

The closest experience I have to this song would be being a UT student and interacting with Texas A&M students. In this situation, the A&M students are the crazy ex. It’s been almost 4 years since these two teams last played each other, and since A&M was beat by the amazing Texas Longhorns. And yet, they still can’t seem to get over us.

To this day, they refer to The University of Texas as “TU”, which is apparently a huge insult. They’re so into hating on us that they even sing about us in their fight song, saying “’They eyes of Texas are upon you’/That is the song they sing so well/So goodbye to Texas University/We’re going to beat you all to.” This song screams “craxy ex-girlfriend” over and over again, just like at the end of Miranda’s song.

I’d say the fact that they feel so strongly about us to incorporate us into their school song says a lot about their sanity levels. But its not just the song that makes them the crazy ex in this relationship, it’s the fact that after 4 years of not playing each other they still sing it. In the words of Mariah Carey, “why you so obsessed with me?”

MC giphy

The cult that is Texas A&M literally breeds their students to hate UT, while UT students somehow manage to find other things to concern themselves with. Meanwhile, Miranda is following her ex around with a pistol and physically assaulting him while he’s just trying to mind his own business. Maybe these two aren’t exactly equivalent, but you get the picture. Hopefully A&M can learn to get over us one day, and Miranda can learn to leave the gun at home after a breakup.


Filed under Blog Post 3, Country Pop, Reflection