Track-by-Track Power Ranking: ‘Garth Brooks’ (1989 Album)

An artist saying that they can’t pick their favorite song of theirs because it would be like picking their favorite child is a pretty commonplace sound bite. It works that way too for the fans of artists, at least right after they announce a world tour.

On Monday morning’s “Good Morning America”, Garth Brooks spilled the beans to long-time friend Robin Roberts that he would be embarking on a World Tour in 2014. Later in the week, Brooks stated on “The Talk” that this tour would probably a three-year endeavor.

It’s hard to try and pick your favorite songs especially of your favorite artist because, in all honesty, they all sound like gold to you, but I’m going to try to do it. An album-by-album track power ranking of all of the songs Garth Brooks has ever released.

Starting from his 1989 self-titled debut to the newly minted Blame It All On My Roots: Fifty Years of Influences box set, so without further a do… The ‘Garth Brooks’ Power Rankings.

10. I’ve Got A Good Thing Going – It’s a little too slow and a little sad, but not the right enough amount of sad and slow. Great cut on most artists’ albums, but it doesn’t quite meet the standard that I set for Garth Brooks material. Don’t worry, he’s got a good thing going, though.

9. Alabama Clay – A country song should tell a story and it does just that. Boy grows up on the farm, moves to the city, moves back to the farm for the love of his life and to raise his family. Little too convenient.

8. I Know One – I really love this song. A fool always being around for a girl is a song that I’m always going to cherish. Kind of a sad little two-step number. Feel depressed, put this little ditty on.

7. Not Counting You – The leadoff single, the only track on the album solely written by Brooks and it made it to number two on the U.S. country charts. It’s a high-energy song to start off the album, there’s just too much good stuff to get it any higher.

6. Nobody Gets Off In This Town –  This song maybe ranked higher than it should be for my own sentimental reasons. I remember listening to this song on vacation in Hibbing, Minnesota at the Greyhound Bus Museum. It’s featured in the museum due to the line, “the greyhound stops and somebody gets on, but nobody gets off in this town”. That moment in that trip to Hibbing has always stuck with me and has made ‘Nobody’ one of my favorite Garth tunes.

5. Cowboy Bill – If a country song is supposed to tell a story, ‘Cowboy Bill’ hits that out of the park. It’s a greatly written story about an ex-cop named Cowboy Bill. All the kids in town become friends with Bill, but none of the grownups believe the stories he tells of being a sheriff… until Bill can’t tell his story anymore.

4. Everytime That It Rains – Kenny Chesney was the one that sang ‘Something Sexy About The Rain’, but Garth beat him to the punch in 1989 with this song. The song looks back at a one-night stand at a roadside café in the middle of a torrential downpour. The listener can hear the rain and is instantly there in the scene.

3. Much Too Young (To Feel This Damn Old) – Garth Brooks’ first single release was this song and it peaked at number eight on the charts. The song is a classic if not just for the Chris LeDoux shout out in the third verse. It’s a rodeo heartbreak song with a beautiful fiddle solo to start. The same fiddle player George Strait had on his first single ‘Unwound’.

2. If Tomorrow Never Comes – One of the best love songs in the history of country music usually takes second fiddle to the other one on this album, but I firmly believe that ‘Tomorrow’ is on equal footing. It’s beautifully written and unlike ‘The Dance’ it is co-penned by Brooks. ‘Tomorrow’ was Brooks’ first number one hit and features one of the best lines to ever be written: ‘So tell that someone that you love, just what you’re thinking of, if tomorrow never comes.’

1. The Dance – Did you expect any different? It’s highly regarded as the best song Garth Brooks has ever recorded which is probably true.  Of course, ‘The Dance’ made it number one as well. Even non-country music fans know about this beautiful song. I leave you with the best verse from the best song on ‘Garth Brooks’:

Holding you I held everything / For a moment wasn’t I the king / If I’d only known how the king would fall / Hey, who’s to say – you know I might have changed it all.

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