The 18 Worst Country Singles of 2010

Here it is. My list of the worst country songs for 2010. I am fully aware that “Hillbilly Bone” was released to radio back in October 2009 but it impacted this year more than it did last year. All these songs aren’t just marginally bad, they represent some of the worst country music ever created. Most of the acts are artists who have stopped caring about finding quality material to record and have settled for mediocre trash riddled with clichés.

Each song below helped to make 2010 live in country music infamy. Sit back and enjoy the best of the worst, the truly abominable crap that stunk up the airwaves over the last twelve months.

18. Trace Adkins – “This Ain’t No Love Song”

Adkins has one of country music’s most powerful voices yet he never uses it to any effect. His last good song, “Till The Last Shot’s Fired,” wasn’t even released as a single. “Love Song” proves Adkins doesn’t care anymore and will record just about anything. What a waste of a good talent.

17. Billy Currington – “Pretty Good At Drinkin’ Beer”

Billy Currington is pretty good at many things besides drinking beer. He knows how country boys roll and how to give good directions. He enjoys parties for two (and with Shania Twain who wouldn’t?) and he’s got a feeling that he and his girl must be doing somethin’ right.

Problem is, who really cares? He sure knows the hit-making formula (he’s had three straight number one hits) but he wouldn’t know a truly great song if it nipped him in the behind. Plus, he’s far from an outstanding vocalist. He showed the world promise with the outstanding “People Are Crazy” but has nose-dived ever since. In the case of Billy Currington, quantity far exceeds quality.

16. Steel Magnolia – “Just By Being You (Halos and Wings)”

Honestly, I don’t get it. Halos and Wings are two of the oddest objects to sing about in a song. I cannot take this song seriously nor do I understand its meaning.

While “Keep On Lovin’ You” was the start of something promising, “Just By Being You” proves their inconsistency. To make it big at radio and to connect with fans, each song has to be great. This one is a bombastic mess.

15. Brad Paisley – “Water”

The country music world needs another novelty song from Paisley as much as the Gulf Coast need more oil. It’s as if Paisley isn’t even trying anymore; he’s sucked the freshness, and originality, right out of his act. With its nod to wet tee-shirt contests and spring break shenanigans, “Water” is the worst of  Paisley’s not-so-serious ditties.

14. Joey + Rory featuring the Zac Brown Band – “This Song’s For You”

Why would a duo born to sing classic country music waste their time on a song like this? It’s great they want to salute everyone and their mother and I applaud the sentiment, but there really is no point.

“This Song’s For You” only underscores the problem with Joey + Rory and country radio – this is not hit material and if they release any more songs in this vain, they will quickly fade into obviation.  Songs about songs rarely ever work, anyways. Get your act together, guys.

13. Darius Rucker – “This”

A sound-alike to his previous drivel “Come Back Song,” Rucker is quickly becoming indistinguishable and he’s lost all artistic credibility as far as I’m concerned. Every song sounds the same and covers the same tired ground we’ve heard forever and far better. I still think he belongs in country music, but not by singing songs like “This.”

12. Darius Rucker – “Come Back Song”

There isn’t any doubt that Rucker belongs in country music. Problem is, he’s pandering to the mainstream country audience and radio. To call “Come Back Song” bad is an understatement. It’s a piece of fluff where something of substance was needed. He’s shown before he’s capable of great songs, so why would he waste his time with something like this?

11. Lady Antebellum – “Hello World”

I’ve called this song many things – bombastic, a Charles Kelley solo number gone wrong – but it really is worse than the sum of its parts. It grates on you the more you hear it and never fully explains itself. What does this song really mean? Thank goodness they didn’t write this one.

10. Kenny Chesney – “Ain’t Back Yet”

“Yet” is what happens when an artist records any song that comes their way just to have a single at radio. His time would’ve been better spent extending his absence from the road to the radio airwaves and relaunching his career with the far superior “Boys of Fall.” In a career filled with many terrible singles, this is the worst yet, even if it’s the most aptly titled.

9. Tim McGraw – “Felt Good On My Lips”

By the time an artist begins releasing singles like “Lips,” they either have lost all motivation for greatness in their career or they are being very badly advised. A forgettable mess, this is the worst single of McGraw’s long career. Let’s hope he can turn things around mighty quickly.

8. George Strait – “I Gotta Get To You”

I don’t care if you’re considered “The King” or if you’re in the Country Music Hall of Fame. There is no excuse for Strait to record or release such a bland and vanilla song. He does justice to no one when he mails it in, and instead of being a teacher to all the newcomers about the power of great country music; he succumbs to the pressure to stay relevant.

Thankfully it’s just one misstep in a sea of great recent singles, a world in which George Strait stops trying is a very sad day for country music.

7. The Band Perry – “Hip To My Heart”

With the line, “I like your lips like I like my Coca-Cola yah,” “Heart” takes its place in country music infamy. Neither original nor clever, it’s the worst debut single this year. And this from the same band responsible for  “If I Die Young.” Consistency is not their strong suit.

6. Toby Keith – “Every Dog Has It’s Day”

When an artist of Keith’s stature progresses to horse manure like this forgettable flop, the chances of a career revival are slim to none. A clichéd mess, “Dog” represents the worst of country music in 2010, lazy songwriting and an awful hook. The record exec or execs responsible for letting this see the light of day should be out of a job.

5. Rodney Atkins – “Farmer’s Daughter”

Packaged around a semi-traditional arraignment, “Daughter” is yet another ode to life on a farm. This time it’s the romantic entanglements between a hired hand and his boss’s little girl. With a feeling of been-there-done-that, Atkins isn’t charting any new ground here, and surprise, radio is eating it up. It’s time to grow up and move on.

4. Jewel – “Stay Here Forever”

How on earth could one of the best singer/songwriters write a song this bad? More importantly, how could her label (Valory Music Co) allow its release? Whoever is advising Jewel on her career needs to be fired. Of course it is fitting that her worst song would be associated with one of the worst romantic comedies (Valentine’s Day) ever made.

Her magic lays with songs like “The Shape Of You,” the gorgeous ballad she debuted on the Primetime Emmy telecast in August (Video is below). That song should’ve been the single. Get your act together, Jewel.

3. Blake Shelton with Trace Adkins – “Hillbilly Bone”

Any song rhyming “city” with “Twitty,” in the first half of the first verse, needs serious help. A waste of two very formidable talents, Shelton and Adkins are worthy of so much more. To think that this is the song that finally gave Shelton the artistic credibility he deserves isn’t just shameful; it’s downright cringe worthy.

2. Gretchen Wilson – “I Got Your Country Right Here”

Easily the most grotesquely despicable piece of drivel in Wilson’s singles catalog to date, “Here” marks an artist screaming for an identity and failing miserably. With all hope of artistic integrity lost, Wilson deserves her place in the scrap heap of desperate has bins.

1. Jason Aldean – “Crazy Town”

Another in a long line of amped up travesties for Aldean, “Town” is nothing more than an abysmal attempt at rock, an overproduced arena thumper gone haywire. He may actually have something worthwhile to say, but the message is lost in a sea of noise. This is bad, even for Aldean, but it’s a new low for country music.


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