Did you know that celebrating Father’s Day was first proposed in our country in the early 19th century? Well, you got that right. A woman in Washington wanted to start all the festivities because she wanted to acknowledge and give thanks to the man who gave her everything she needed in life – her daddy. And, he did it as well as he could be, with five other children to raise alone.
Our fathers are one of the most important people in our lives. They have done so many things for us, and have sacrificed even more. Fathers deserve a special day once a year in order for us to let them know how much we love and appreciate them.
Us country lovers, of course, would have gotten the appreciation from the genre somewhere – and it’s most likely from our folks. And, who better to sing about fathers than our Country fathers too? Here’s our Top 5.
5. That’s My Job by Conway Twitty
In 1987, Conway Twitty released not only a compelling story about the unconditional love of a father, but this is also a Twitty song that is unlike any other.
Twitty delivered this song like many-a-country classic, with honesty and vulnerability. The story of what a father’s ideal role is in the lives of their children is what Twitty sang in “That’s My Job.” A father’s role is never ending, and is always there for their children no matter what, no matter where. The support that we as children, receive from them is pivotal for anyone.
Even Gary Burr, who penned the heart-wrenching ballad, referenced the song to his life and his experiences with his father. In a short snippet of his thoughts shared to Chicken Soup for the Soul: Country Music, he shared that the whole song was what his relationship with his dad was like.
4. He Didn’t Have To Be by Brad Paisley
Objectively, we don’t immediately tack on a lot of good values when the word ‘stepfather’ comes into play. However, there are several out there who proved that they are more than a man and a father to the kids who are left behind.
Brad Paisley gives us this heart-grabbing song that reminds us that stepdads too are dads and most of the time, they embrace their stepchildren in such a way that make them feel like they were his own.
The perspective of the song is from the son of a single mother. Throughout the progression of the song, he narrates that his mother dates a man who includes him in almost everything that he does. In the final verse where we find out that the son is ready to become a father himself, he expressed that he wanted to at least be half the father that his stepfather “didn’t have to be.”
According to Paisley, the song was inspired by his best friend and frequent co-writer and co-collaborator, Kelly Lovelace, and his relationship with his stepson. Back in 2000, the duo attended the ACM Awards as Paisley’s guests. According to Lovelace, Paisley wanted to do a song that “would make his wife cry.”
3. My Old Man by Zac Brown Band
This one is a tear-jerker, for sure. Narrating Zac Brown’s own story about his own father and the examples set by him, the song is a perfect blend of their signature style and a compelling narrative. It features “the band’s harmony-heavy vocals, which drive forward a scaled-back arrangement of unplugged guitar, fiddle. and light strings.”
The song itself almost takes us back to the life of the narrator. We see their childhood and their transitions towards adulthood, where we finally find out that at the end of this song, was actually something that the father in the song is hearing from heaven.
The song even earned a Grammy nomination the band the Best Country Duo/Group performance.
2. Tough Little Boys by Gary Allan
This song by Gary Allan is a soft little acoustic number backed mainly by a guitar and a keyboard. It sings mainly about a father who always thought of himself as a tough guy, even when he was a child.
But, as to how all fathers must relate to this, as soon as he sees his own child, he starts to question and doubt himself whether or not he would be good enough for his child. He admits that into the song, he worries about his child’s safety and his security. The father essentially turns to Jell-O when it comes to their kids.
The sentiment is understandable. Fathers will do anything to keep their children safe and sound from the world. Thus, in turn, they would sacrifice anything and everything just to make their kids happy and this song perfectly reflects that.
1. Ready, Set, Don’t Go by Billy Ray Cyrus and Miley Cyrus
We end this list with a wonderful duet – a duet by a country dad and his country daughter. “Ready, Set, Don’t Go” is a duet by two of country’s crossover artists – Miley Cyrus and Billy Ray Cyrus. It’s a dedicated song from a father to a daughter.
This was also one of the pivotal moments for Cyrus to realize something about his daughter Miley and the gift of parenting. On one of his interviews, he regarded his thoughts regarding his daughter’s decision to move to Los Angeles.
“This was a great thing for our entire family and a great opportunity. But we were quite comfortable at our farm (Singing Hills, their 500-acre farm in Tennessee) and our kids were comfortable with their school. As Miley was leaving with the family, I reached that pivotal crossroad every parent knows will come someday – realizing my kid is growing up and I gotta let ’em leave the nest and fly.”
The accompanying music video features some of the home videos that Cyrus has kept, which makes the impact of the song so much more felt. During its time, it received a CMT Music Award nomination at the 2008 CMT Music Awards. The song received critical praise in both its lyrical content as well as its performance.
We hope you enjoyed Father’s day, as well as this list as a late-treat for all the special country dads out there!