To the outside world, country music may be all about cheating songs, heartbreak songs and songs about trucks, but any country fan will tell you that the genre has plenty of good-time songs, too. And not just good times at a bar or a rodeo or a fishin' hole -- we also love a good time at the beach!
Below, The Boot takes inventory of the best tracks to blare as you're headed to, sitting on or just dreaming of the beach.
While The Voice coach's third No. 1 -- which appears on Blake Shelton's Barn & Grill -- isn't exactly about the beach, it starts this countdown off on the right foot, reminding listeners of all the things that send them packing for their favorite vacation destination. Whether you're inflicted with road rage or at the hands of an inept oral surgeon, take comfort in knowing that there's "some beach, somewhere."
The second single from Ballard's 2011 self-titled debut covers both genders' favorite summer activities: For girls, it's having a good time with their friends in various fun-loving locales; for boys, it's "a buncha girls." The Michigan native co-penned the tune, which will make any girl want to grab her friends and a Jeep and head to the beach for the weekend.
The stress of packing for the beach can be overwhelming; therefore, Vassar compiled this lyrical checklist for his 2000 self-titled debut. As you sing along, fill your beach bag with the essentials: "Sunblock, a blanket and the best of Jimmy Buffett." The Virginia native didn't forget the cooler, and neither should you: "T-bones for the grill / Hey, ain't it great to rough it?"
Summer is easily the most spontaneous season. On his 2010 self-titled debut, this Florida boy urges you go with the flow and make it easy on yourself. You don't need a fancy beach resort in Bali to satisfy your whims -- just "pick a place on the map we can get to fast / Where the white sandy beach meets water like glass."
Nobody does laid-back beach songs quite like Chesney. Maybe that's because he actually lives on an island, but either way, 2002's "No Shirt, No Shoes, No Problems" perfectly captures the easygoing vibe of a carefree day at the beach: "The sun and the sand and a drink in my hand with no bottom / And no shoes, no shirt, and no problems."
Even on sand, story songs are the solid foundation of country music. Haggard penned this compelling tale of a lovable outlaw who finds the freedom he needs and the "amor" of a gringo-favoring senorita on "the seashores of old Mexico." The tune was actually first recorded by Hank Snow in 1971; Haggard didn't take a stab at it until His 30th Album in '74. Finally, George Strait covered the track for his 2005 Somewhere Down in Texas project, taking the song to the Top 15 on the charts.
There are two theories on what makes the beach so relaxing. With this song from his 2009 American Saturday Night CD, Paisley publicly declares his allegiance to water over sand. His defense? It's the only relief "when that summer sun starts beating down." The father of two also reminds us that we can bring the beach to us with an "inflatable pool, full of Dad's hot air."
Who doesn't dream of just packing up and heading to Mexico for the weekend? These Georgia boys had an instant, Buffett-esque classic when they released the third single from 2008's The Foundation. One spin of this tune and you'll be saying, "Life is good today."
"When the Sun Goes Down"Kenny Chesney
Chesney has the distinction of being the only artist to be included on The Boot's list of the Top 10 Country Beach Songs twice -- but that shouldn't exactly be surprising, since the Tennessee native could easily fill a beach song countdown by himself! The title track from Chesney's 2004 four-times-platinum release is a quintessential summer tune, during which the country superstar, with the help of Uncle Kracker, reminds us that there's plenty to do once "the sun goes down."
The granddaddy of the modern beach-plus-drinking song could only be written by none other than music's king of calypso poets. This tune, which first appeared on the Alabama native's 1977 Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes album, has been covered by countless artists and has inspired and been referenced in even more songs. With all its popularity, you'd think that someone would've found that "lost shaker of salt" by now!