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