It's been a decade since Justin Moore released his debut single, "Back That Thing Up," from his eponymous freshman album, in 2008. In the years since, the country music hitmaker has released four full-length albums, two EPs and more than a dozen singles -- and he's earned himself five No. 1 songs, half a dozen gold single certifications and one platinum single certification.
Moore most certainly has more hits in his future, but for now, the following are The Boot's picks for his Top 5 songs.
"Small Town USA"From: 'Justin Moore' (2009)
"Small Town USA" was Moore's second single, and his first No. 1 hit. Written by Moore, Jeremy Stover and Brian Maher, the song talks about "a Saturday night, my baby by my side / A little Hank Jr. and a six-pack of lights" and "a Sunday morning that's full of grace / A simple life, and I'll be okay." It was inspired by Moore's homesickness for his hometown of Poyen, Ark.
"I was just talking about missing home because I had only been [in Nashville] for six or eight months at the time," Moore recalls (quote via Songfacts). "I obviously didn't have anything going on really, and I was like, 'Man, I feel like I'm walking on quicksand here. I just miss home and want to go home.'"
"'Til My Last Day"From: 'Outlaws Like Me' (2011)
Moore wrote "Til My Last Day" with Brian Dean Maher and Stover about his wife Kate. The song -- which says, "'Til my last day / 'Til my last breath / Of everyone that can / I can love you the best" -- owes its inspiration to the ZZ Top song "Rough Boy."
"I just liked the groove of it," Moore recalls, "and I thought, ‘Well, that still sounds tough. I could sing something like that.’ So, we sat and wrote that song.”
"Point at You"From: 'Off the Beaten Path" (2013)
Ross Copperman, Ben Hayslip and Rhett Akins wrote "Point at You," which was the first single from Moore's third album, Off the Beaten Path. Its lyrics -- "I've got a rough side, a wild side / At least a country mile wide / A fightin' side after a few / If they wanna see my sweet side / My soft side, my best side / I just point at you" -- were a good fit for Moore, especially after the success of "'Til My Last Day."
"I hadn’t done a love song prior to ["'Til My Last Day"], and the fact that it was so successful opened my eyes to the fact that we can do some more stuff in that vein," Moore tells The Boot. "It’s still going to sound like me. I’m obviously not going to cross over or anything like that. But we cut some more songs with that in mind. It worked."
"You Look Like I Need a Drink"From: 'Kinda Don't Care' (2016)
Rodney Clawson, Natalie Hemby and Matt Dragstem wrote "You Look Like I Need a Drink." The song was first pitched to Blake Shelton -- and, lucky for Moore, he passed on it. Lyrics such as "You look like you're gonna try to let me down, nice and easy / Think I know why you won't sit down / You're just dancin' around what you came here to do / But you're scared to / And all I can think, the way you're lookin' at me / You look like I need a drink," helped propel the song to No. 1; it was Moore's fourth chart-topping tune.
“I saw the title of the song and thought, ‘Oh my gosh, what in the world is this going to be?’ And then I heard it, and it was something completely different from what I was thinking,” Moore recalls to The Boot. “I loved the irony in it, and I thought the songwriters did a great job on it. Plus, melodically, I thought it had a great feel and great rhythm and just was fun. It’s been a little while since we’ve put an uptempo, fun song out.”
"If Heaven't Wasn't So Far Away"From: 'Outlaws Like Me' (2011)
Moore shows his tender, spiritual side with "If Heaven Wasn't So Far Away," which became his second No. 1 hit. Written by Dallas Davidson, Rob Hatch and Brett Jones, the song is Moore's only platinum-selling tune.
"Dallas came in and said he saw a little girl on TV, and she said, 'Heaven is so far away,'" Jones shares with The Boot. "So then I said, 'I had a lot of people die in my life.' We started talking: My older brother was killed in Vietnam, and my little brother died in a motorcycle accident. My dad died when he was only 61. We all lost people we loved. We all started talking, and the song sort of wrote itself; it magically came together."