The ’90s was a good time for country music, prior to earlier times. During the 1940s, country music wasn’t a big mainstream genre as it was in the ’90s and now. It was just a regular genre with its own fair share of ups and downs.
Towards the end of the ’40s and the beginning of the ’50s marked the revival of country music all thanks to “Nashville sound”. From that time to the ’90s, country music evolved and reached its peak. Its evolution was a result of contemporary pop with some elements of country incorporated into the mix.
The ’90s was an era rocked by country songs, albums, and artists. We at the Grizzly Rose are happy to provide you with country songs by country icons such as John Michael Montgomery, Chase Bryant and others which uplifted the masses during the ’90s.
Top Ten Country Songs of the 90s
While of course, any top ten list is subjective, we’ve put together our picks for the top 10 country songs of the 90s. We took into account album sales, YouTube views, top rated period on country charts. These metrics are how we measure the songs.
10. “Doctor Time” by Rick Trevino
This is an upbeat song that is sure to get your feet-tapping, head-nodding and basically make your body move. It expresses the idea that all the pains you’ve experienced and will experience heals with time. The narrator of the askes Doctor time (presumably God) to have mercy on him and heal his pains.
It was released in October 1994 as the fourth single from his self-titled album “Trevino’s”. The song peaked at number 5 in U.S billboard hot country songs chart. It became number three in Canada’s RPM country track chart by 1995.
9. “Don’t take the girl” by Tim McGraw
The song tells a story about two lovers that had to deal with difficult situations which occurred in three stages of their lives. In each of those situations, the boy does everything possible to ensure people don’t take the girl.
Tim McGraw’s don’t take the girl was released in March 1994 as a second single from his album which was named “Not a Moment Too Soon”. The song became a hit, it was ranked number one in U.S billboard hot country songs chart in 1994. The song was also a hit in Canada, topping the Country Tracks (RPM) chart.
8. “Rope the moon” by John Michael Montgomery
“But she thinks I could rope the moon/ in her eyes there is nothing I can’t do/ When I think it’s out of reach, she’s the reason I still try/ She thinks I could rope the moon.” John Michael Montgomery.
The song is about the narrator who gets undying encouragement from his daughter. According to the song, what he doesn’t see for himself, his daughter would. This is one of the best country songs that express the beauty of father-daughter love.
The song was released in 1994 as the second single from his album named “Kickin’ it up”. It was a hit and peaked at No: 4 in the U.S billboard. It was also ranked second in Canada. Once the year ended, the song became 45th in U.S country songs and 26th in Canada’s country tracks.
7. “I think about you” by Colin Raye
“You eight years old/ big blue eyes and a heart of gold, when I look at this world, I think about you and I can’t help but see/ that every woman used to be somebody’s little girl/ I think about you.” Colin Raye sings.
The song is all about a man/father saying how he is constantly reminded of his little girl in the image of every woman he sees.
The song was released in February 1996. It was the third single from his album named “same name. The song peaked at number 3 position in U.S billboard, while in Canada the song ranked number 2 in the charts.
6. “Should’ve Been A Cowboy” by Toby Keith
The song sells the lifestyle of a cowboy. According to the lyrics, a cowboy is bold and enjoys a lot of perks like having a sidekick with a funny name that he hunts outlaws with.
The song was released in February 1993 as the first single from his self-titled debut album. It became a massive hit by topping both U.S billboard hot country and Canada’s RPM country tracks charts.
5. “Maybe it was Memphis” by Pam Tillis
This is a mid-tempo song in which the narrator recalls her encounters with a former lover she met in Memphis Tennessee.
The song was released in 1991 as the first single from her alum named “Put Yourself in My Place”. The peaked at number 3 and 4 in U.S hot country songs chart and Canada country tracks chart respectively.
4. “Stand Beside Me” by Jo Dee Messina
This song tells a story about a woman who apparently is a mother. Her man left her saying “He had to find himself out on the road”. She had to be strong and work harder. After some years, the man came back saying “I’ve missed you for so long. Oh, baby, what can I do?”. She said she wants a man that “stands beside her”, not one that tries to own or depend on her.
The song was released in October 1998 as the third single from her album named “I’m Alright”. The song was a hit and topped U.S Billboard Hot country singles & tracks for over 3 weeks. This achievement marked Jo Dee Messina as the first female artist to top the U.S Billboard charts for three weeks.
3. “Keepers of the stars” by Tracy Byrd
This was and is still one of the best country love songs. It tells a story about the singer (Tracy Byrd) telling his lover that a third party is responsible for their being together. This third party is referred to as “the keeper of the stars”. Spoiler alert! It’s God.
Tracy Byrd released this masterpiece in 1995. It was the fourth and last single from his album named “no ordinary Man”. It was a hit. It became second on U.S billboard hot country singles & tracks charts. After a year since it was made, the song was named the song of the year by the Academy of country music.
2. “Strawberry Wine” by Deana Carter
The song is about a girl who visits her grandpa’s farm during the summer. She fell in love with a guy, along the line she lost her innocence. She then compares the love she felt to the sweetness of strawberry wine. After several past passed, she came back to the farm and discovered everything had changed. Reminiscing about her past, she wondered whether it’s her virginity she misses or the guy who happens to be just a part of her past.
Deana Carter’s strawberry wine was released in 1996 as a debut single which was also the first from her debut album “Did I shave my legs for this?”. It was a hit, topping both the U.S Billboard hot singles and Canada’s RPM country tracks. This song is bound to trigger emotions and it’s considered one of the greats offered by country music. A step in the narrator’s shoes and you will get into a “bittersweet” state!
1. “Check yes or No” by George Strait (AKA King of Country)
George strait’s check yes or no is a romantic love story about two children who were in love. The girl writes to her crush a letter asking if he loves her. She urged him to reveal his feelings by either checking the box labeled “yes” or “no”. They later got married in the future and started a life on their own all thanks to the simple letter.
The song is the greatest single ever made by him. It was released in 1995. Topped U.S Billboard country singles chart and Canada’s RPM country charts. Till now the song is regarded as one of the best love songs country music has to offer.
What’s Your Favorite 90s Country Song?
So there you have it! Our list of top 10 country songs that ruled the 90s and can still rule till today… Unfortunately, a list of 10 songs is not enough to showcase the great heights country music has reached. There hundreds of country songs, all of which could be great. We apologize if we didn’t include your favorite 90s country song!
Want to hear more 90s country? Check out our 90s Country Jams playlist on Spotify.