Before he was winning awards and headlining country festivals, Chris Stapleton was a dependable country hitmaker for everyone else in Nashville.

Okay, not every 21st century singer has called up Stapleton for a hit, but those looking for a career-changing song often picked one that the bearded one had a hand in writing. Brad Paisley, Darius Rucker, Blake Shelton -- it's a long list of artists who leaned heavily on Stapleton songs when it mattered most. Heck, Thomas Rhett did it twice!

This episode of the Secret History of Country Music explores Stapleton's songwriting catalog. The 28 songs mentioned in this video don't make a complete list of his hits for other artists, but it shows how influential he was long before he took the stage at the 2015 CMA Awards.

At least two reality TV show contestants and one American Idol singer have earned fame with a Stapleton hit. Stapleton has far more No. 1 songs as a writer than he does as a singer; despite widespread acclaim, he's notched just one of the latter, "Broken Halos" in 2018.

The Boot's list of songs Stapleton has written for other artists includes pop songs for Pink and Adele. He's also penned traditional country songs for Travis Tritt and Alan Jackson, and a drinking song for Tim McGraw that he stripped down for his Traveller album. "Whiskey and You" is among his best songs -- but, be honest, did you know that McGraw cut it first?

The Top 10 Chris Stapleton Songs