The Best of the Brad Paisley Playlist

Brad Paisley's Best Songs

Brad Paisley is indisputably one of country music's hottest stars. He's won three Grammy awards, 14 Country Music Association awards, two American Music awards and 14 Academy of Country Music awards as of 2017. He has 19 No. 1 singles and he's sold over 12 million records.

Paisley is a gifted songwriter who can write a sensitive song like "He Didn't Have to Be" then turn right around with a humorous song like "Ticks." Both nail their subject matter with ease.

This makes it particularly difficult to choose the artist's best songs ever, but I've made a list of 10 of my favorites, those that I feel best showcase Paisley's talents. 

10
of 10

"We Danced"

Brad Paisley - 'Who Needs Pictures'
Brad Paisley - 'Who Needs Pictures'. Arista Nashville

This lovely ballad was the fourth and final single from Brad Paisley's first album, Who Needs Pictures. The instrumentation in this song is very understated, featuring acoustic guitar, piano and drums. The focus is – as it should be – on the storyline and the touching lyrics: "And from that moment, there was never any doubt. I had found the one that I had always dreamed about."

This was Brad's second No. 1 song, and it's a perfect song for a wedding. Watch the video for "We Danced."
 

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09
of 10

"Me Neither"

Brad Paisley - 'Who Needs Pictures'
Brad Paisley - 'Who Needs Pictures'. Arista Nashville

This rollicking tune combines Paisley's humor with a lighthearted country rock style, and it features his excellent guitar playing. We see the humor in the song as the guy is continually shot down by the girl, but he keeps trying to convince everyone that he has a "who cares" attitude after each rejection. The drum-heavy choruses feature light fiddle and we even get a taste of ragtime piano. But the song largely exists to frame the guitar work, especially the solo which takes place in the final chorus as it fades out to the end. It could have been a fluff piece, but Paisley's deadpan tongue-in-cheek approach turns it into a fun little romp. Watch the video for "Me Neither."
 

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08
of 10

"Letter To Me"

Brad Paisley - '5th Gear'
Brad Paisley - '5th Gear'. Arista Nashville

Paisley was the sole writer on this song that involves events from his life. The man wants to write a letter to himself back when he was just 17 to tell himself things he wished he had known back then. He mentions hugging an aunt every chance he would get. He talks about listening to his father, and knowing that he was always right. He thanks his teacher because she always gave him extra time. Who doesn't wish they had done certain things differently? Musically, this song is similar in tempo and style to Paisley's previous hit, "He Didn't Have to Be," but the story line is very different. The instruments are understated, spotlighting the lyrics and Brad's warm vocals. Watch the video for "Letter to Me."


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Brad Paisley - 'Time Well Wasted'
Brad Paisley - 'Time Well Wasted'. Arista Nashville

This guitar-driven song has a loping mid-range tempo accented by steel guitar and fiddles. It's the story is of a young man who is sitting on a bench when he's approached by an elderly gentleman who asks him if he's waiting for his woman. The two converse and the elder man confides that his lady used to always be late as well. The lyrics show the elder man's love for his lady, but it's done in a humorous way. Brad's vocals are spot on, as usual, and he shows tenderness for the subject. A big part of this song was the video that made it even more special for Brad. Andy Griffith agreed to play the part of the elderly man. Watch the video for "Waitin' on a Woman."

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06
of 10

"Little Moments"

Brad Paisley - 'Mud on the Tires'
Brad Paisley - 'Mud on the Tires'. Arista Nashville

This is a different kind of love song. It uses a mid-range tempo to tell the story of all the "little things" his girl did to make him love her. It features an acoustic-sounding beginning that builds by the chorus, then it adds a fiddle and steel guitar to the simple guitar. Finally, there's the requisite electric guitar solo that shows off Brad's excellent musicianship. Watch the video for "Little Moments."
 

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05
of 10

"He Didn't Have To Be"

Brad Paisley - 'Who Needs Pictures'
Brad Paisley - 'Who Needs Pictures'. Arista Nashville

This song has an easygoing melody that tells the tale of a young boy and his single mom who has just started dating. It's told from the boy's point of view, taking him through adulthood when he's now about to become a parent himself. He can look back on the way his stepfather treated him as his own child, and he hopes he can be half the father to his own child. The song uses accents of steel guitar and fiddle in addition to traditional instruments. It was one of Brad's first singles and it introduced fans to Paisley as someone who had a thoughtful opinion about important topics. The song later inspired a gift book written by Paisley and Kelley Lovelace. Watch the video for "He Didn't Have To Be."

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04
of 10

"I'm Gonna Miss Her"

Brad Paisley - 'Part II'
Brad Paisley - 'Part II'. Arista Nashville

The first verse of this song is sung to an acoustic guitar and a bit of steel guitar as Brad leads people into the story. The man loves to fish, and his girlfriend gives him an ultimatum: fishing or her? The punch line is given as Brad sings, "I'm gonna miss her when I get home ..." The chorus breaks into a full band with a party feel as you can hear his buddies cheering him on for choosing fishing. The emphasis on electric guitars and strong steel guitar is heard from here on in. You can't help but chuckle at Brad's sense of humor. Watch the video for "I'm Gonna Miss Her."

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03
of 10

"When I Get Where I'm Going" (featuring Dolly Parton)

Brad Paisley - 'Time Well Wasted'
Brad Paisley - 'Time Well Wasted'. Arista Nashville

This acoustic gospel-style song features the legendary Dolly Parton. The tempo is slower and uses an acoustic arrangement featuring guitar, mandolin, fiddle and drums, all of which perfectly put the emphasis on the story of life after death. Brad and Dolly have superb harmonies in this song. I especially love how Brad uses his falsetto in the chorus, adding just the right touch. Watch the video for "When I Get Where I'm Going."

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02
of 10

"Two People Fell In Love"

Brad Paisley - 'Part II'
Brad Paisley - 'Part II'. Arista Nashville

This ballad tells the story of how everything begins when two people fall in love. It was the first single from Brad's sophomore release, Part II, and it continued to show the clever way that Brad can tell a story. Watch the video for "Two People Fell in Love."

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01
of 10

"Whiskey Lullaby" (featuring Alison Krauss)

Brad Paisley - 'Mud on the Tires'
Brad Paisley - 'Mud on the Tires'. Arista Nashville

"Whiskey Lullaby" follows the time-honored tradition of story songs. This acoustic ballad is a duet with the angelic-voiced Alison Krauss. The couple in the story separate after the man comes home from being in the service to find his wife with another man. He turns to the bottle and ends up drinking himself to death. The woman is filled with grief and remorse and she also takes to drinking with the same result. Brad and Alison's voices are magical together, filled with emotion in telling this tragic story. Watch the video for "Whiskey Lullaby."

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Don't Just Listen to One

Settle in, relax, put your feet up, and listen to all these Paisley hits.