Soundtrack of your life: Pick 11 songs that you would have on the only soundtrack you listen to for the rest of your life, pick a line from each that you most identify with and write a short statement of why this song made it.

1. Mean to Me – Brett Eldredge
This song, if you haven’t heard it, will make your heart implode. It’s still pretty new to radio right now, but it’s going to be a popular wedding song next season, I’m sure. I first heard it early in the summer after my freshman year of college, and was hooked immediately. I’ve heard it live four times since, once being a private backstage performance that brought me to my knees. Forever a favorite in this one. Line: If I could be the fire in your firefly, the cool in the rain, the spark in your eye, the answer to your prayer and the faith that sets you free, then I’d be what you mean to me.

2. Anything But Mine – Kenny Chesney
It’s so incredibly hard to choose one Kenny song (ha, turns out I couldn’t) because he’s always been my go-to artist and I’m impressed with every album he creates. This song is an older one, and it carries the weight of an early heartache that still burns in me sometimes. Line: In the midst of the music, I tell her I love her. We both laugh, ’cause we know it isn’t true.

3. Angeles – Jensen Ackles
Props to the SPN fandom for existing and leading me to find this song. Jensen is good at everything he does. His voice is what put this on the list: it’s so soothing and calm, but still crazy rough and manly. Perfect combo. I’ve been known to use this as a lullaby, and it never leads to nightmares. Line: All your secret wishes could right now be coming true, and be forever with my poison arms around you.

4.  Fire and Gas – Buddy Brown
Okay, so I would imagine that not too many of you have heard this song before. Buddy Brown isn’t exactly mainstream, at least not yet, but he does have a handful of songs on iTunes and regularly posts performances on YouTube. This song is probably my favorite that he’s written. Gotta love a tribute to that person who hurts you best. Line: But baby, you and me are too much alike; how could we ever make it last? They said if you and me ever got together, we’d be fire and gas.

5. Check Yes or No – George Strait
How could I go on living knowing I could never hear a George Strait song ever again? He’s the king. There’s not much else to say. This song is adorable from start to finish, a great counter to #4. I can’t imagine listening to it and not ending up happy. Line: Do you love me, do you want to be my friend? And if you do, well then don’t be afraid to take me by the hand if you want to.

6. Night Moves – Bob Seger
One of my favorite classic songs. Honestly, I’ve heard a few covers I like even better than the original, but it’s too hard to decide on one, so I’m keeping with Seger’s. It’s just about growing up and summer love and I’m not really sure if there’s a better time of life than that. Line: We were just young and restless and bored, living by the sword.

7. El Cerrito Place – Kenny Chesney
Kenny strikes again. This song came off of his Welcome to the Fishbowl album a couple years back. It’s been recorded by others, but this is the version I first learned and fell in love with. I would love to someday travel to California and wander these streets from the lyrics, but until then, playing this dynamic track will do. Line: Did you hear the ocean singing, and baby did you sing along while you danced out in the water to some old forgotten song?

8. Say You Do – Dierks Bentley
Again, so tough to choose from Dierks’s stuff because I love all of it. Despite being rather new, this song won out because I don’t think I could ever tire of it. I love his upbeat stuff like “What Was I Thinkin'” and “Drunk on a Plane,” but I know that I’ll always be in the mood for “Say You Do.” It’s just sad enough, just optimistic enough, and just sexy enough to always be fitting regardless of where I am in my life. Line: I don’t mind a little smoke getting in my eyes, baby. Take your hands, take your lies, and lay ’em on me.

9. Born to Run – Bruce Springsteen
This is just so American. I love me some Springsteen, and it would just feel wrong to choose any other song, despite my love for “One Step Up.” This is the perfect way to break up my otherwise mellow soundtrack. Line: Will you walk with me out on the wire? ‘Cause, baby, I’m just a scared and lonely rider, but I gotta know how it feels. 

10. Prove You Wrong – Tyler Folkerts
I’m some 95% sure you haven’t heard this unless you know me personally. Tyler is a gem I discovered on YouTube through his covers. Since I subscribed to his channel, he’s put out a handful of his own songs and has also joined forces with a band out of Omaha. He’s a real talent, and I honestly think he could make it. “Prove You Wrong” is what you want to say when someone is scared, or when your relationship gets rocky. It’s an anthem to turn to when the odds are against you. Line: ‘Cause I proved you wrong every chance that I could, and even I didn’t think it would end up this good. You gave me the chance to make you see.

11. Drivin’ All Night – Jake Owen
Including a Jake Owen song seemed like a no-brainer, until it came time to actually choose one. I love his old stuff like “Yee Haw,” but I also love to jam to the likes of “Beachin'” and “Barefoot Blue Jean Night.” How, then, did I end up settling on “Drivin’ All Night” instead? Well, because it’s different. The vibe and feel of this song is just so unlike anything else I’ve included here. Can’t go wrong singing about Chevys from the cab of a Chevy, either. Line: You’re a rumrunner kiss that I still get drunk on. You’re a text, you’re a call that falls out of the blue. You’re a snapshot in my head and on my phone. And you ain’t gotta ask twice – I’m already gone.


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