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2007 Album Cuts That Could Have Been Hits

April 20, 2008

Last year brought in some of the most entertaining music that I’ve heard from many artists in quite a while. To my disappointment many great songs from many albums were not released so I thought I would put together a list of the 10 album cuts that I believe would have made it to at least the top 10 if given the chance. The albums may not have been released in 2007, but they were in the process of releasing singles during that year.

Dangerous Man “High” by Trace Adkins

– It was a disappointing decision for Trace to skip out on some of his best work to date from his album “Dangerous Man”. In a great example of country music songwriting art Trace sings about avoiding the use of drugs and alcohol as a way to escape reality. Instead he reveals that his high is driving down the freeway and enjoying a beautiful weekend and, more personally for him, standing there on stage and have a good time with his fans. Trace uses his music to encourage safer and less destructive methods of dealing with the struggles that come with living and, in turn, he makes a shout out to his fans and praises them for what they allow him to do which, considering their numbers, would have made this an instant success.

Chris Young “Center Of My World” by Chris Young

– Nashville Star winner Chris Young has had a typical start to his career with two failed singles at country radio. However I think this would have turned his luck around. It contains a peaceful and attractive rhythm and a romantic message that seems to be very pleasing to country fans these days. It’s nice and refreshing and doesn’t try to hard to preserve his traditional country influences like his first two singles. Also it’s catchy. After only two or three listens it wouldn’t be very surprising to find yourself singing right along with it. Maybe it wouldn’t have propelled him to stardom, but it probably would have scored him a hit.

Little Bit of Life “I Am” by Craig Morgan

– This is one of the most enjoyable songs off of Craig’s third album from Broken Bow. Now that he has shifted labels it won’t have the chance to hit radio from the album, but it would have been an instant top 10 if not a #1. Craig said himself this was a fan favorite and showed a sense of relation and interaction with his listeners that defiantly would have gone over well for him. One of the most self inspiring songs in years, this enjoyable and creative song lists off many aspects of a man’s personality and shows off a sense of shameless pride that rubs off instantly, an aspect that usually makes for a great hit at radio.

Sinners Like Me “Pledge Allegiance To The Hag” (featuring Merle Haggard)

– Both traditional and modern country music lovers have always had respect for Merle haggard. In his tribute to one of his biggest heroes and his favorite genre Eric provides a fun country party song and bar anthem that would have probably been quite a hit for him had it been given the chance. This fast paced country pride songs takes a stab at the constant thought that the country life and the music are fading by saying that as lot as they’re still people like Eric and his listeners, and the great Merle Haggard and his legendary influence, country will never die. This is a true tribute and call out to all country fans everywhere to stand true to their music that would have defiantly been heard loud a clear and shot up the charts.

Some People Change “Clouds” by Montgomery Gentry

– Another known fan favorite, and a favorite of the duo and their label, that for whatever reason failed to make its way to radio. Of all the songs about dealing with death that I have heard, this one is probably the most personal and has the longest lasting effect of any. The song has Eddie showing off one of his most sincere performances ever as he sings from the perspective of a man wondering if a lost loved one is watching him from the clouds and knows that he will see him there again someday. Plain and simple, this song would have hit #1 for sure by touching the hearts and souls of countless people who failed to purchase the album and continue to struggle with the hurt of losing someone close to them.

Me and My Gang “Ellsworth” by Rascal Flatts

– In my opinion this is by far the best track on their “Me & My Gang” Album. They produced a cancer song with “Skin” and this would have only added to the respect that fans had form them with their understanding of incurable and destructive illnesses, in this case Alzheimer’s. The song has a grandma who is inflicted with the treacherous disease in one of the most tearful and powerful stories that the trio could have offered the public. It shows a little bit of a positive side to the illness, in an attempt to seal away some of the struggle and pain that it also brings the bystanders and family members, by focusing on how while the illness eliminates current memories, those from years passed and happier years still remain and become the center of the patients world. This would have skyrocketed the trio to #1 and it’s still a mystery why the label was crazy enough to keep it from radio.

I Loved Her First “Play Hurt” by Heartland

– Heartland fell victim to a common ailment for Loften Creek artists by becoming one hit wonders. This could have been due to the label’s poor advertisement of the great material off their debut album. “Play Hurt” would have been a great way to introduce the faster paced sound of the band and it would have kept things interesting by supplying an inspiring play on words. What you may think is a song about playing hurt and getting out of doing something actually encourages the listeners to understand that sometimes you just need to suck it up when you’re hurt or suffering and move on for your sake and the sake of others. Maybe it wouldn’t have been a #1 or saved their career from complete loss, but it would have likely supplied them with their second top 10 hit.

Mountains “Cowboy Girl” by Lonestar

– It is quite possible that Lonestar could have saved their star status from plummeting if their label had ditched the family friendly anthems they had them releasing continuously. This would have been a great song for them to use to break away from that bad luck streak. After “Mountains” hit the top 10 their label chose romance over fun and this is probably the most “out there” song on their 2006 album also called “Mountains”. The song is geared towards country girls and their redneck lifestyles and likely would have gone over quite well as a fun and enjoyable release from the once biggest group in the genre. Maybe it wouldn’t have hit #1 or kept them together, but it would have certainly kept them in the spotlight.

Your Man “Lord Have Mercy On A Country Boy” by Josh Turner

– Josh has become well known for his preservation and respect of traditional country. In his album “Your Man” he added his take on the Don Williams classic “Lord Have Mercy On A Country Boy” which provided a modern and respectable take on the song. It provided a fun and upbeat feel to it that really brought out the enjoyment that Josh has for his musical influences. In addition it would have allowed the modern day listeners to hear the song and enjoy it as much as Josh did in his younger years and still does. While “Me And God” had a respectable run and was a great song, I believe it should have come after this song as a radio release and Josh could have had a 3 song top 10 streak on his hands and made a traditional classic into a modern success.

Big Dog Daddy “Big Dog Daddy” by Toby Keith

– What song from his 2007 album could have related to Toby and his fans more than the title track “Big Dog Daddy”. This song not only preserves his fun side, but also earns him a fancy nickname that his fans have come to know him by almost instinctively. If you think about it Toby has had hits similar to this, “Who’s Your Daddy?” would be the biggest to point out, so for him to release a fast paced and entertaining southern rock/country song would have been no surprise and would have been welcomed with open arms by fans and radio alike. I’m confident that this could have become a signature song for the Big Dog Daddy himself and probably would have come close the top spot if not securing it tightly and bringing Toby back to his prime.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Sam permalink
    April 20, 2008 4:15 pm

    I have to agree on Ellsworth. Great song, beautiful lyrics!

  2. May 1, 2008 8:09 pm

    hey, I wanted to exchange links with you. I also have a country music blog, Country Mike. E-mail me back and let me know what u think.
    –Mike S.

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