Brooks & Dunn are the undisputed kings of the 1990s new country movement. Coming on the heels of their first album, 1991’s cowboy-themed “New Red Blood” brought them to the peak of their careers and influenced a new generation of country artists. Their songs were unapologetically Southern, raw and explicit — everything that country music was not at that time. Brooks & Dunn released six studio albums, two compilation albums and twenty-one singles before they went their separate ways in 2010. They have since reunited for various tours and other projects. Both Kirt and Ronnie continue performing separately as well as together on different stages around the world. These are their top 10 songs from Brooks & Dunn discography.
“Hangin’ With Hank” (1996)
“Hangin’ With Hank” (1996) Brooks & Dunn’s first collaboration with the legendary Hank Williams, Jr. was a hit from the moment it was released in 1996 and continues to be a popular song today. Curiously, it was never released as a single. Perhaps it was a bit too controversial for country radio stations in the 1990s given the wild, rebellious nature of the song’s lyrics. The title and lyrics are a tribute to Williams’ hit song, “If you’re gonna be wild, be wild, be wild, out there on the edge.” In this song, the two friends share some whiskey and talk about life, women, and trucks.
“Cowboys Are Frequently, Secretly Fond of Each Other” (2000)
Brooks & Dunn’s most controversial song, “Cowboys Are Frequently, Secretly Fond of Each Other,” was released during a period of heightened sensitivity toward gays and lesbians. Despite the furor, the song was a smash hit. Kirt and Ronnie later expressed regret over releasing this song as a single but at the time it was all part of an effort to be edgy and push the boundaries of the country music genre. The song’s title is a play on the title of the classic western movie, “Brokeback Mountain.”
“My Eyes” (2001)
One of the most popular songs from “Put Your Boots On,” “My Eyes” was released as the first single from their fourth studio album, “Hard Workin’ Man.” The song’s lyrics are romantic and passionate with a strong sense of longing and desire. The song’s music video was shot entirely in black and white. It features a woman walking through a desert while the two singers watch her from afar. The woman is eventually revealed to be a waitress at a diner. The two wait in line and Kirt gets her to come outside where they watch the sunrise together and ride off into the desert on a motorcycle. The video is a sentimental masterpiece and adds more fuel to the fire of the song’s romantic lyrics.
“(You Can Still) Rock in America” (1993)
This song’s title makes a bold statement about the need to maintain the integrity of country music. The lyrics celebrate the distinctiveness of the traditional country sound and criticize the shift to a more softened style of country music. This was the first single released from their second studio album, “New Frontier.”
“Only in America” (1997)
Brooks & Dunn released several songs that celebrate the Southern way of life, but “Only in America” takes it to a new level with its unapologetic patriotism and its celebration of American life. This is the kind of song that could only come from Southern singers with a deep appreciation for their roots and the country that made their success possible. The song celebrates American values and the freedom that makes American life so great.
“Burnin’ Bros. BBQ Company” (1999)
The lyrics of this song are a lighthearted poke at country music’ but they also express the need to preserve the tradition of country music and its distinctiveness. This song is a tribute to the legendary “Buckaroos” and the “Cattlemen’s Association.” It is a fun, silly song that is sure to put a smile on the face of even the most serious country music fans.
“If You’re Gonna Do Me Wrong (Do It Right)” (1994)
This song is about a guy who gets dumped by his girlfriend but takes it philosophically. He likens the ending of his relationship to the course of nature, such as the changing seasons and the life and death cycle. This song was their third single release from the debut album and is still a very popular song today.
Brooks & Dunn are one of the most iconic country music duos of the 1990s and 2000s. They influenced a new generation of country artists, helping to redefine the genre with their edgy Southern themes and unapologetically raw lyrics. These are their top 10 songs from their discography. If you want to listen to real, authentic country music, you should definitely check out these songs by Brooks & Dunn.