Number 16 song on your birthday billboard

Though Ray Price first met Kris Kristofferson when the latter was a janitor at Columbia Studios, the singer wouldn't remember the songwriter's name until he heard his "For the Good Times" demo between sets during an tour.

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Though it sounds like an old standard, Vince Gill wrote "Go Rest High on That Mountain" in , inspired by the death of country great Keith Whitley due to complications from alcoholism in Though Gill began writing the song after Whitley's death, he finished it following the death of his own older brother in Despite the devastating lyrical content and tragic circumstances, it's noted for its spiritually optimistic note.

Nelson's version might be the sparest of them all: just guitar, accordion and wounded warble painting an unbearably sad last-goodbye scene in vivid sepia tones. Even the Reivers and UB40 have recorded "Blue Eyes" since, and legend holds that it was the last song Elvis Presley ever played on his piano in Graceland before his death. Austin-based singer-songwriter Bruce Robison was inspired to write "Travelin' Soldier" after a friend was activated for duty in the first Iraq war.

Robison released the initial version of the song — the tragic love story of two lonely teenagers whose budding romance is trampled under the weight of the Vietnam War — in the mid-Nineties, but it became a chart-topping hit in after the Dixie Chicks re-recorded it when it again became relevant. The song peaks on a Friday night at the football game, when the young man's name is read over the loudspeaker as the crowd is asked to pray for the "list of local Vietnam dead. In the two weeks following, "Travelin' Soldier" dropped to Number Three, then off the charts completely. Released in October , "If We Make It Through December" tells the tale of a factory worker who gets laid off shortly before the holidays and then becomes wracked with guilt over his inability to buy his daughter some "Christmas cheer.


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But while headlines screamed of "bear markets" and "economic indexes," Haggard's song got right to the heart of the issue: the people behind those headlines. More importantly, it mirrored the optimism that shone through the struggles: "If we make it through December, we'll be fine.

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Inspired by the story of a father who kept his son's Dodge around after the son was killed in Afghanistan, "Truck" isn't just an exploration of the ways we try and maintain connection to people we've lost through what they left behind, but about men: how they're allowed to feel, how they aren't. The song is there to emote in ways he feels like he can't. Heavy doesn't even begin to describe Shelby Lynne's acoustic retelling of her own fractured home life in "Heaven's Only Days Down the Road. It was then that her estranged alcoholic father shot and killed her mother before turning the gun on himself.

EVERY #1 SONG on my BIRTHDAY since I was born!! (EPIC B-DAY MASHUP) - Sam Tsui

Two gunshots serve as final punctuation. Written after the terrorist attacks on September 11th, , "Where Were You When the World Stopped Turning " stands as one of the most poignant "of the people" songs ever written. Jackson's heartfelt expression of stunned helplessness encapsulated the American collective consciousness perfectly and the song stayed at the top of the charts for five weeks.

House Of Representatives, placing it in the permanent Congressional Record.

Recorded during the dawn of the highly stylized Nashville Sound era, "Long Black Veil" was a musical departure for honky-tonk singer Lefty Frizzell. The saddest moment, however, is reserved for his lover, wailing under cover of the night winds. Honky-tonk star Faron Young was hanging at Tootsie's Orchid Lounge near the Grand Old Opry when a struggling tunesmith with a stack of rejected demos played him this song.

From breakfast beer to dirty shirts, no song better describes the feeling of waking up hungover and alone than "Sunday Morning Coming Down. A dysfunctional family's plight hits a disastrous final note in John Michael Montgomery's soap opera tale "The Little Girl. Backed by harmonies from bluegrass stars Alison Krauss and Dan Tyminski and an arrangement to urge on the waterworks, Montgomery remains even-keeled as the fable reaches its spiritual conclusion.

On record and especially onstage, Brad Paisley and Alison Krauss can both play the class clown to perfection, but this duet off Paisley's Mud on the Tires will exquisitely ruin your whole afternoon, a star-crossed lovers' lament in which both parties drink themselves to death, one verse at a time. The video packs a Lifetime movie's worth of pathos into the first two minutes alone. Not just one of country music's most evocatively ripe lyrics but maybe also its most acute diagnosis of clinical depression: Everything the singer encounters — from the weep of a robin to the whine of a train to the fact that a falling star makes no sound at all — mirrors his dark mood.

Hank thought it was a poem, not a song, written initially for his alter ego "Luke the Drifter" to recite.

Good thing he reconsidered: Without the gentle lope of the melody softening the mood, what Elvis introduced as "probably the saddest song I've ever heard" during his legendary televised concert in Hawaii might have been too hopeless to endure. No one in country music has done more to bring attention to abuse than Martina McBride. But does it at least have a happy ending? Well, while the song doesn't the "concrete angel" in question is a grave marker , but its legacy does.

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Path Created with Sketch. Shape Created with Sketch. What she means is that right now, the best rebellion involves turning off the hate and making space for hope. I missed her in Chicago, where everyone was trapped inside, the streets vacant apart from the odd extreme-weather junkie taking photographs of ice floes. I had indeed seen her Instagramming this kind of mysterious, late-night Discovery Channel-type stuff — the sort of thing teenagers once saw at the IMAX theater on a field trip after getting stoned. How did she get into it? And yet even in her early years, when Musgraves looked more the part of your average Nashville aspirant, in cowboy boots and blond highlights, there was always a kind of poise, an innate regality that set her apart.

This, perhaps, is the other side of her East Texas grit — the one that manifests less as yee-haw joy and more as D.

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Musgraves grew up in Golden, Tex. She would make it happen on her own terms. And not in a baller way — like very small-business, check-to-check kind of a thing. But they made all their own decisions. Growing up, she had a Spice Girls poster in her room — Ginger, with her wild tattoo, made a strong impression — and listened to emo rock bands like the Used and Dashboard Confessional.

There was, of course, the requisite period in which a teenage Musgraves turned her back on the whole cowgirl thing. But this rebellion turned out to be short-lived. I want to mix that in with something modern. This is a big-deal event in the business; its attendees are queen-makers in an industry in which success is still determined by access to radio airwaves.

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A young woman takes the stage at the legendary Ryman Auditorium, the so-called Mother Church of country, about to play the song that could make or break her career. A star is born. For Musgraves, performing alongside Dolly Parton at the Grammys, winning Album of the Year, presenting an award at the Oscars — all of this is unequivocally her dream.

Wait, I can use my brain, sit on my ass and make a living? By the time Musgraves eventually located her particular voice, it was already honed to a sharp edge. Back on her bus, in Wisconsin, after playing to a couple thousand freezing fans who arrived lit and ready to party, Musgraves decompressed again. I enjoy it!

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She puttered around her kitchen, making mugs of ginger tea. She might have scrolled through the looks her stylist had just sent through for the Grammys; she was still searching for something just right to match Dolly Parton. If I ever have a girl, it could be cute to give her P.

Sparkles, or Makeup Beauty, or whatever, you know? Lots to do. She carries her Bluetooth speaker from room to room with the tender devotion of a mother cat ferrying kittens across a flooded stream.

Over the last year, an increasingly dominant voice in this mix has been Post Malone, a year-old sort-of-rapper from suburban Dallas. Like most other post-Drake stars, he is an amphibious rap-singer who likes to brag about his vast wealth and sexual conquests — except when he is spending long soulful interludes lamenting exactly those things. But Post Malone, my daughter helped me understand, is popular as much for his persona as for his music. He is a superhero of silly, sloppy, irresponsible ease — a hard-living, cheerful goofball whose happiness makes everyone else happy.

He seems to smile with extra teeth. Everything he does seems half-accidental. He first learned to play guitar because he was extremely good at the video game Guitar Hero. He chose his stage name using an online rap-name generator. His real name is Austin Post. This sort of giddy misidentification is, in fact, the key to Post Malone. He is not exactly a rapper but is also not not a rapper.

His musical roots reach down to country, metal, folk and rock — online, you can watch him play loving covers of Bob Dylan and Nirvana. And yet his megasuccess has mainly come under the umbrella of hip-hop. He says he prefers to think of himself as beyond genre, which is convenient, because he has sometimes been head-slappingly inarticulate on the subject.

Post Malone, in other words, is a big roiling mess of contradictions. No wonder he is so popular with teenagers.