Country music and patriotism have always gone hand in hand. Whether in times of war or peace, American anthems have been fan-favorite country songs for decades, and there are a slew of country tunes that proudly proclaim the beauty and benefits of the United States of America.
June 26, 1989, might have seemed like any other day in Nashville, but it was actually one of those watershed moments that only reveals itself in retrospect. A struggling young country singer named Alan Jackson signed his first recording contract that day -- 26 years ago today -- launching one of the most celebrated country music careers of all time.
"I'm In" became a Top 10 hit on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for Keith Urban in 2010, after he released it as a single from his 2009 Defying Gravity album, but he wasn't the first artist to record the tune.
Bobby Pinson and Toby Keith co-wrote "Somewhere Else," released in February of 2011 as the third and final single from Keith's Bullets in the Gun album. The song peaked just outside the Top 10 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart (No. 12) but also earned a spot on the Billboard Hot 100 (No. 80). Inside, Pinson tells The Boot about writing the tune.
Toby Keith co-wrote "Lost You Anyway," the third single from his That Don't Make Me a Bad Guy album, with Bobby Pinson. Released in March of 2009, the song peaked at No. 10 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. Inside, Pinson tells The Boot about writing the tune.
Chris Young, Anthony Smith and Frank Myers had been talking about writing together for years before they finally sat down for a songwriting session. But when they finally did, the result was solid gold (er, platinum): The three co-penned "Tomorrow," which Young released in February of 2011 as the first single from his Neon album, and the tune became Young's fourth consecutive No. 1 hit and has been certified platinum. Inside, the three tunesmiths tell The Boot about writing the sultry song.
Lee Brice released "Love Like Crazy," written by Tim James and Doug Johnson, in August of 2009, as the first single from his June 2010 album of the same name. It debuted on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart the week of Sept. 5, 2009, and after 46 weeks, the tune finally broke into the Top 10 -- the slowest climb into the Top 10 in the chart's history.
Cherie Oakley, Mark Oakley and J.P. Twang co-wrote "Turn on the Radio," a song that was recorded by Reba McEntire and released in July of 2010, as the lead single from her 2010 All the Women I Am album. The tune became McEntire's 60th Top 10 single on the country charts and, at the beginning of 2011, her 25th No. 1 song on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. McEntire was the first female country artist to achieve the former feat, and the latter accomplishment tied Dolly Parton's record for the most No. 1 songs by a female country artist.
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