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Happy Honky Tonk Halloween

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Halloween may be the strangest one yet. Whether you’re going out or staying in, you probably need a badass Halloween country playlist. Before I attach my Honkytonk Halloween playlist, I thought I’d break down the 10 best songs to listen to this Halloween.

10) Crazy Eddie’s Last Hurrah – Reckless Kelly

For this playlist I mixed some old and new songs. “Crazy Eddie’s Last Hurrah” was a jam 20 years ago and it still is. There’s something about vibing to a bloody crime of passion that’s slightly more socially acceptable on Halloween.

Notable lyrics: “Well her boyfriend was sure nice to me

He said, Calm down, would you like a drink?

And then I shot him full of holes from his nose to his knees

And I polished off my little sweet pea”

9) Compared to a Soul – The Steel Woods

This song about “selling your soul” and different forms of sin always hits different, but on Halloween? Yes please. From gambling to murder, this song has it all.

Notable Lyrics: “I gotta give it to ya, Satan

You weren’t lying

When you said ‘I’m the best liar

And the fastest one of them all'”

8) Ballad of a Law Abiding Sophisticate – Colter Wall

Bluegrass has some of the darkest songs in country music, so this playlist is full of Bluegrass. That being said, Colter Wall stands out as one of the few singers who can convince me he’s actually capable of killing a man. Every lyric in this song sounds like a direct quote from a serial killer documentary which makes it even more chilling.

Notable lyrics: “Well marry me

To a noose and a tree

What that ol’ judge called the first degree”

7) Wolfman – Tyler Lance Walker Gill

“Wolfman” is the perfect Halloween song. In this song Tyler Lance Walker Gill describes all the reasons he believes he is a werewolf (even though he’s probably just a drunk). There is no way this song wouldn’t make this list. Also this song is great, so there’s that too.

Notable Lyrics: “Well there’s an awful lot of things been happenin’

That I just can’t explain”

6) Before the Devil Knows We’re Dead – Turnpike Troubadours

This song about living life while you’re alive is amazing for more reasons than it’s a Turnpike song. Sometimes you have to take risks.

Notable lyrics: “Well raise another round boys and have another glass

Be thankful for today knowing it will never last”

5) To Heaven From Here – Lost Dog Street Band

Honestly any Lost Dog Street Band song is perfect for Halloween, however “To Heaven From Here” felt like the best fit. Lost Dog is known for their dark and pessimistic lyrics that border on creepy. If you haven’t checked them out yet, you need to.

Notable lyrics: “Read my me rights as my funeral verse

I’ve spent more time in jail than I did in church.”

4) The Ghost Song- Breaking Grass

“The Ghost Song” details a brutal murder by a cheating spouse. Unfortunately the perfect crime is ruined by a scorned wife’s ghost. Breaking Grass knows how to write a ghost story in a song.

Notable lyrics: “I don’t believe in ghosts

they don’t scare me.

I don’t believe in ghosts

Cause the only thing that’s haunted here is me.”

3) Streets of Aberdeen – Hellbound Glory

“Streets of Aberdeen” differs from the rest of the horror stories on this list because it is written about a real life serial killer, Billy Gohl. Don’t be fooled by the lullaby like sound of this song. These lyrics are gruesome and true. If this song wasn’t creepy enough, this whole album features references to Billy Gohl. Definitely worth checking out.

Notable lyrics: “There was a bad man

Who ran a shipping town

He’d send you down the Wishkah

Set up to drown”

2) Hell’s Comin’ With Me – Poor Man’s Poison

The only good thing to come out of 2020 was the return of Poor Man’s Poison! PMP’s debut song is the perfect song to blast on Halloween. This song details the story of a black magic traveler who returns to the valley to make judgmental villagers pay. I don’t want to give away the whole story so check it out.

Notable lyrics: “It is well with my soul,

you line your pockets full of money

that you steal from the poor”

1) In Hell I’ll Be in Good Company – The Dead South

Is it any surprise that Dead South is number one on this list? Honestly, any and every Dead South song could have been number one here. Yet I wanted the chance to say Happy Honktonk Halloween and if we all end up in Hell, I’ll be in good company.

Notable lyrics: “It didn’t hurt, flirt, blood squirt, stuffed shirt

Hang me on a tree

After I count down, three rounds, in hell I’ll be in good company”

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Rankings

2020 Country Recap: The Top Albums of 2020

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(Top right) Lamentations (American Aquarium), Welcome To Hard Times (Charley Crockett), American Savage (Thieving Birds), The Lost Songs of Gary Stewart (Mike and The Moonpies)

Despite 2020 being one of the craziest years of all time, 2020 was a great year for country music fans. Our favorite artists worked their asses off this year to brighten some of the darkest times with country music. So before we enter 2021, with tons of great new music ahead, let’s look back on some of the best releases of 2020.

1) American Aquarium, Lamentations

Lamentations is American Aquarium’s latest masterpiece. BJ Barham described this album to be the album he is most proud of from his 12 released albums and EP’s. Each song on the album from “Starts With You” to “A Better South” is deeply meaningful and a complete banger. Lamentations was easily my favorite album of 2020.

Charley Crockett, Welcome to Hard Times

Welcome to Hard Times is the perfect folk/ country album. Each and every song shows off Charley’s amazing voice and sound. This album is filled with songs that will be on replay for the next decade.

Thieving Birds, American Savage

American Savage is the long-awaited third Thieving Birds album- and it did not disappoint! This album has so many catchy songs like “Pockets Full of Gold” as well as eccentric bangers like “Honey, Honey” that truly standout. This album is a must listen!

Mike and the Moonpies, Touch of You

This Mike and the Moonpies album pays tribute to Gary Stewart by releasing covers of his unreleased songs. Each song is perfectly done and honors Gary Stewart while also adding the beloved Mike and the Moonpies flair.

Casper McWade, Unraveled

Unraveled is one of the most perfectly put together country albums. From the upbeat jailbird songs like “Whiskey Bent and Jailbound” to the classic country love songs like “The Rest,” Casper’s album is perfect for all outlaw country fans.

Now while these were my personal favorites of 2020, there were so many amazing albums to check out! Check out this list below for more. Happy New Year!
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Top Releases of 2020 Complete List:

American Aquarium, Lamentations

Austin Upchurch, Breakdown

Bart Crow, Pretty Good Heart

Casey Donahew, Lost My Brother’s Goat

Casper McWade, Unraveled

Charley Crockett, Welcome to Hard Times

Clay Hollis, Honkytonk Highway

Dalton Domino, Fever Dreamer

Drew Moreland, Feeling Good Again

Hellbound Glory, Pure Scum

Jeff Crosby, Northstar

Jesse Daniel, Jesse Daniel

John Baumann, Country Shade

Jonathan Terrell, Westward

Josh Abbott Band, The Highway Kind

Kody West, Overgrown

Koe Wetzel, Sellout

Kolby Cooper, Vol 2

Kyle Nix, Lightning on the Mountain

MarDe Brooks, Running out of Time

Mike and the Moonpies, Touch of You

Mike McClure, Looking Up

Muscadine Bloodline, Burn it at Both Ends

The Panhandlers, The Panhandlers

Parker McCollum, Hollywood Gold

Randy Rogers and Wade Bowen, Hold My Beer Vol. 2

Reckless Kelly, American Jackpot/ American Girls

Slade Coulter, Here We Go Again

Tennessee Jet, The Country

Thieving Birds, American Savage

Tom Mcelvain, Lost Whiskey Tapes

Zach Bryan, Elisabeth

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The Definitive Ranking of Cross Canadian Ragweed Songs

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Just in case you didn’t know this October marks the 10 year anniversary of Cross Canadian Ragweed breaking up. And if you miss Ragweed like me and Koe Wetzel, it’s time for a blast from the past. Here is the definitive ranking (or so I say) of the top 10 Cross Canadian Ragweed songs.

10) When It All Goes Down

“When It All Goes Down” is one of those songs that is so catchy, you almost don’t notice the dark lyrics. For a song about the confusing drama of religion, the steel guitar is completely out of place in the perfect way. Even though I personally started out with no idea what “When It All Goes Down” was about, this is now one of my favorite songs to scream sing alone in my car. Welcome to number 10 on the list!

9) Bang My Head

Look, this song starts with the phrase “Let me tell you something, cucumber.” The fact that I didn’t make it number one exclusively for that is a miracle. That aside “Bang My Head” is the best song for blasting when you are really REALLY angry. “Bang My Head” is the ultimate catharsis and also one of the most underrated Cross Canadian Ragweed songs.

8) Kick In The Head

“Hey, I’m jaded” and I love a song about good old-fashioned misery. There’s no other song that has ever said “with this roller coaster, bathtub toaster, kick in the head” and I hope there never will be. You can’t redo legendary.

7) Jimmy and Annie

Oh man, I love a song about outlaws. Jimmy and Annie were just two young lovers who wanted to see the world and waste a little gas, if you ignore the robbing banks. But anyway, “Make ’em open up your ears and listen to your song. It doesn’t matter whose right or wrong.”

6) Lighthouse Keeper

I am 98% positive “Lighthouse Keeper” must have been written under the influence. However, this wild story about a magic carpet, unicorns, fortune tellers, and an evil lighthouse keeper is probably the most magical journey country music has ever had.

5) Cry Lonely

“Cry Lonely” is a song about loving someone who only wants you when they’re lonely. “Cry Lonely” is a bitter but relatable jam that lands number 5 for being one of the catchiest Cross Canadian Ragweed songs there is.

4) 17

“17” is the song I feel like everybody knows- and for good reason! The lyrics are impeccable and honest. I hope everyone got to experience being 17 and “runnin’ from your folks, runnin’ from the law.” If not, it’s time for a trip back home for a redo. After all “you’re always 17 in your hometown.”

3) Alabama (Soul Gravy Version)

“Alabama” was the first Cross Canadian Ragweed song I fell in love with, so naturally this will always have a special spot in my heart. However, this song about missing an ex has stood the test of time. The song describes a girl sitting on her phone, waiting for a text and I’m pretty sure we’ve all been there.

2) Dimebag

“Dimebag Darrell God bless that man!” This song still hits hard with the lyrics “Bad news travels faster than any good news that you hear. Just one more dark disaster makes you wonder why we’re here.”

1) Boys From Oklahoma

Ohhhhhhh man. If you haven’t spent countless hours watching live versions of this song including the one with Stoney LaRue, Wade Bowen, Randy Rogers, Jason Boland, and Bleu Edmondson go do that right now! Either way, this song about rolling joints has so many elite lyrics I couldn’t even begin to start picking some to put here. Of course “Well I ain’t no holy roller, so I just use a bong” definitely deserves an honorable mention. Seriously, this is THE best Cross Canadian Ragweed song of all time and nothing will ever compare.

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