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The Good, the Good, and the Ugly: Dave Spencer’s Top 10 and Bottom 5 of 2011 [VIDEO]

Ethan Miller, Getty Images/Ethan Miller, Getty Images/Andrew H. Walker, Getty Images

It’s that time of year again. You’ve likely been seeing “Top 10 Fill in the Blank of 2011″ everywhere you look. Well, here’s another one. You’ve seen Chad’s take; now it’s my turn: Dave Spencer’s Top 10 Favorite Songs of 2011. Here we go:

1. YOU AND TEQUILA  by   KENNY CHESNEY W/GRACE POTTER

The production is spare. The vocals are subtle and sincere. The evocative lyric by Matraca Berg and Deana Carter makes obsession feel like a warm summer night. It’s really pretty perfect.

2. COLDER WEATHER  by  THE ZAC BROWN BAND

How the seasons change from one song to the next. Zac’s emotional delivery expertly sells this cold, closed-off, just-out-of-reach and, above all, sad story.

3. MAMA’S BROKEN HEART  by  MIRANDA LAMBERT

No sadness here. Just anger and vengeance. Ah, it must be Miranda. This subversive tale of a borderline firebug wondering how her mother would feel about such behavior is the rock-hard center of the terrific “Four the Record” album.

4. HOMEBOY  by  ERIC CHURCH

The theme is a classic: looking back fondly AT and wishing FOR something you disregarded in your youth. Eric nails it. The production rocks!

5. FROM A TABLE AWAY  by  SUNNY SWEENEY

It’s another familiar theme, but with a clever twist. How do you know he’s not really serious about anything he’s said? Watch him comfortably have dinner with his wife while convincing you he doesn’t have a care in the world. Sunny’s a terrific country singer. Hope she sticks around.

6. HARD TIME MOVIN’ ON  by  DAVID BRADLEY W/RODNEY CROWELL

It’s an unusual approach for a post-breakup song. He wishes her well, apologizes to her husband, then asks her to give him anything he can use to get past it all. Terrific idea. Terrific song. That it never charted is criminal.

7. HOME  by  DIERKS BENTLEY

A great patriotic song from Dierks about just stepping back, observing, and taking it all in.

8. FLY OVER STATES  by  JASON ALDEAN

No word yet on whether or not this will be a forthcoming single from Jason’s “My Kinda Party” album, but I have fingers crossed. Like the Dierks song above, it’s visual patriotism. But this time the main character is in an airplane and hardly surprised that the land he’s seeing below him makes up what he calls the “fly over states.”

9. TOMORROW  by  CHRIS YOUNG

You can’t have country music without breakup songs. And this is one of the year’s best. Chris knocks this account of inevitable separation and KNOWING what you’re gonna be missing out of the park.

10. MR. BARTENDER  by  BRADLEY GASKIN

Stone. Cold. Country. Cryin’ in your beer. “Take me out with one shot.” These types of things need to be hits. This wasn’t. We need to work on that.

 

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And for every ten diamonds, there must be five lumps of coal. With all due respect, this is just my humble opinion: Dave Spencer’s Bottom 5 of 2011.

1. REMIND ME  by  BRAD PAISLEY & CARRIE UNDERWOOD

If they’ll quit screaming at each other, maybe I can appreciate the song. Oh wait, I read the lyrics. Never mind.

2. RED SOLO CUP  by  TOBY KEITH

Sorry, I just can’t get on board. I’ve tried. But it’s just too annoying. Hey, Toby thinks it’s stupid, too. So he won’t care.

3. TODAY IS YOUR DAY  by  SHANIA TWAIN

What a tease! We all thought we were getting a new Shania album. We were all very curious how she would sound without ex-husband Mutt Lange producing her for the first time in nearly 20 years. Instead, all we get is this obnoxious, schlocky, teeth-aching feel-good TV theme. Really? Really?

4. COST OF LIVIN’  by  RONNIE DUNN

Ronnie’s typically sincere delivery actually works against him on this one. Maybe, you CAN be too real. I have a hard time believing anyone wants to turn on the radio and hear 3 minutes worth of the harsh reality they may be wanting to escape by turning on the radio.

5. COME HOME  by  FAITH HILL

First of all, she needs to sing COUNTRY songs. Second, this is way out of her league–her performance on the recorded version is only slightly better than her live performance on the CMA’s. Yikes. Third, maybe it’s time…

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