Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Southern Rock/Country Rock: Top 100 Songs

Southern Rock/Country Rock:

Top 100 Songs

In some ways, the term “Southern rock” is redundant. American rock and roll is generally viewed as a genre which grew out of a melding of blues and country, both of which originated in the south, along with other musical forms such as R&B, gospel, and folk. However, as rock evolved and moved in different directions, the term “Southern rock” emerged in the 1970s as a reference to some of rock’s more country and blues-leaning bands that hailed from the southern United States.

The phrase may have first been coined by Mo Slotin, who used it in a review of an Allman Brothers Band concert he wrote for The Great Speckled Bird, an underground newspaper in Atlanta. Whatever its origins, the term has come to encompass some of rock’s most successful acts to come out of the South primarily in the 1970s, with the Allman Brothers Band and Lynyrd Skynyrd being the two most prominently celebrated.

I set out to create a list focused exclusively on “Southern rock” but, as is always the case with trying to define musical genres, the lines quickly blurred. I was finding lists that went beyond “Southern rock” and encompassed “country rock” as well. While distinctions aren’t firm, country rock essentially is a reference to rock bands like the Eagles and Creedence Clearwater Revival which incorporated elements of country music into their sound.

In any event, I ended up assembling this list of songs from both the Southern rock and country rock genres by aggregating more than 20 lists that focused on one genre or the other or some mix between the two. As with any list, readers are bound to have quibbles, but it makes for a jumping off point in discussing and dissecting what music comprises Southern rock and country rock. Enjoy.

1. The Allman Brothers Band “Ramblin’ Man” (1973)
2. Lynyrd Skynyrd “Sweet Home Alabama” (1974)
3. Marshall Tucker Band “Can’t You See” (1973)
4. Charlie Daniels’ Band “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” (1979)
5. Lynyrd Skynyrd “Free Bird” (1973)
6. Molly Hatchet “Flirtin’ with Disaster” (1979)
7. The Outlaws “Green Grass and High Tides” (1975)
8. Eagles “Take It Easy” (1972)
9. ZZ Top “La Grange” (1973)
10. Georgia Satellites “Keep Your Hands to Yourself” (1986)

11. Ram Jam “Black Betty” (1977)
12. Wet Willie “Keep on Smilin’” (1974)
13. Little Feat “Dixie Chicken” (1973)
14. .38 Special “Hold on Loosely” (1981)
15. The Black Crowes “Hard to Handle” (1990)
16. Ozark Mountain Daredevils “If You Wanna Get to Heaven” (1974)
17. The Band “The Night They Drove Ol’ Dixie Down” (1969)
18. Eagles “Peaceful, Easy Feeling” (1972)
19. The Allman Brothers Band “Blue Sky” (1972)
20. Pure Prairie League “Amie” (1975)

21. Charlie Daniels Band “Long Haired Country Boy” (1974)
22. Steve Earle “Copperhead Road” (1988)
23. The Rolling Stones “Dead Flowers” (1971)
24. Elvin Bishop “Fooled Around and Fell in Love” (1976)
25. Marshall Tucker Band “Heard It in a Love Song” (1977)
26. The Allman Brothers Band “Midnight Rider” (1970)
27. Creedence Clearwater Revival “Lodi” (1969)
28. The Band “Up on Cripple Creek” (1969)
29. Gregg Allman “I’m No Angel” (1987)
30. Lynyrd Skynrd “The Ballad of Curtis Loew” (1974)

31. Blackfoot “Highway Song” (1979)
32. Charlie Daniels Band “The South’s Gonna Do It Again” (1974)
33. Creedence Clearwater Revival “Bad Moon Rising” (1969)
34. Lynyrd Skynyrd “Gimme Three Steps” (1973)
35. The Allman Brothers Band “Whipping Post” (1969)
36. The Band “The Weight” (1968)
37. Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young “Teach Your Children” (1970)
38. Linda Ronstadt “Love Is a Rose” (1975)
39. Eagles “Lyin’ Eyes” (1975)
40. Kid Rock with Sheryl Crow “Picture” (2001)

41. Molly Hatchet “Dreams I’ll Never See” (1978)
42. The Outlaws “There Goes Another Love Song” (1975)
43. Neil Young “Are You Ready for the Country?” (1972)
44. ZZ Top “Tush” (1975)
45. Bob Dylan with Johnny Cash “Girl from the North Country” (1969)
46. Juice Newton “Queen of Hearts” (1981)
47. Elvis Costello “A Good Year for the Roses” (1981)
48. Led Zeppelin “Hot Dog” (1979)
49. Gram Parsons “Return of the Grievous Angel” (1974)
50. The Byrds “Hickory Wind” (1968)

51. The Byrds “One Hundred Years from Now” (1968)
52. Blackfoot “Train, Train” (1979)
53. Marshall Tucker Band “Fire on the Mountain” (1975)
54. Rossington-Collins Band “Don’t Misunderstand Me” (1980)
55. Humble Pie “30 Days in the Hole” (1972)
56. Mountain “Mississippi Queen” (1970)
57. .38 Special “Caught Up in You” (1982)
58. Bob Dylan “Lay Lady Lay” (1969)
59. Creedence Clearwater Revival “Proud Mary” (1969)
60. Ozark Mountain Daredevils “Jackie Blue” (1974)

61. Creedence Clearwater Revival “Lookin’ Out My Back Door” (1970)
62. The Fabulous Thunderbirds “Tuff Enuff” (1986)
63. Neil Young “Heart of Gold” (1972)
64. The Rolling Stones “Wild Horses” (1971)
65. Eagles “Tequila Sunrise” (1973)
66. Linda Ronstadt “Blue Bayou” (1977)
67. Lynyrd Skynyrd “That Smell” (1977)
68. Flying Burrito Brothers “Wild Horses” (1970)
69. Grateful Dead “Friend of the Devil” (1970)
70. .38 Special “Rockin’ into the Night” (1979)

71. The Black Crowes “Remedy” (1992)
72. Robert Plant & Alison Krauss “Please Read the Letter” (2007)
73. The Beatles “Act Naturally” (1965)
74. Bob Dylan “I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight” (1967)
75. Lynyrd Skynyrd “I Know a Little” (1977)
76. Johnny Van Zant “Brickyard Road” (1990)
77. Poco “Rose of Cimarron” (1976)
78. Arlo Guthrie “City of New Orleans” (1972)
79. Georgia Satellites “Battleship Chains” (1986)
80. Black Oak Arkansas “Jim Dandy” (1973)

81. Atlanta Rhythm Section “Homesick” (1981)
82. Amazing Rhythm Aces “Third Rate Romance” (1975)
83. Eagles “Desperado” (1973)
84. Elvis Presley “Blue Moon of Kentucky” (1954)
85. The Rolling Stones “Far Away Eyes” (1978)
86. The Allman Brothers Band “Melissa” (1972)
87. Kid Rock “All Summer Long” (2007)
88. Bellamy Brothers “Let Your Love Flow” (1976)
89. Linda Ronstadt “When Will I Be Loved” (1974)
90. The Byrds “You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere” (1968)

91. ZZ Top “Cheap Sunglasses” (1979)
92. The Allman Brothers Band “One Way Out” (1972)
93. Pure Prairie League “Let Me Love You Tonight” (1980)
94. Lynyrd Skynyrd “Saturday Night Special” (1975)
95. Lynyrd Skynyrd “Call Me the Breeze” (1974)
96. Lynyrd Skynyrd “What’s Your Name?” (1977)
97. ZZ Top “Gimme All Your Lovin’” (1983)
98. .38 Special “If I’d Been the One” (1983)
99. Lynyrd Skynyrd “Simple Man” (1973)
100. Charlie Daniels Band “Uneasy Rider” (1973)

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First posted 3/13/2023; last updated 9/12/2023.

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