Written by two sets of brothers: Jim Beavers & Brett Beavers, and Brad Warren & Brett Warren, “Red Solo Cup” is a song that became viral in 2011. Released in October of the same year, American country music singer Toby Keith recorded the song. It was the second single from his album Clancy’s Tavern.
To note, “Red Solo Cup” is the only song on the album he did not write or co-write. The Warren Brothers (Brad and Brett Warren) co-wrote the song with the Beavers Brothers (Brett and Jim Beavers). They decided to write something that would “make us all laugh and smile.”
According to Brett Warren, Jim did the majority of the writing. On the other hand, Toby Keith told CMT,
“It was the stupidest song that I have ever heard in my life but also “freakin’ awesome.”
Story Behind the Song
Toby Keith has only released two radio singles he didn’t write: “American Ride” and “Red Solo Cup.” The interesting thing about the latter song is that it was never intended to be pitched to anyone to record, but Keith heard the tune after someone who worked for him play it.
“‘Red Solo Cup’ is like a squirrel loose in a church house. We can play it in an office and then play five other songs, give it an hour, walk out, and you’d hear the receptionist singing it. It’s like nursery rhyme stupid.”
In an interview, one of the songwriters, Jim Beavers said,
“I can also say, having been a writer for 10 years and written hundreds of songs, I don’t know a song that more people bring up in more instances than this song about a red solo cup. I don’t know why, it hits something somewhere. It is the craziest, weirdest song you’ve ever heard.”
Initially, Keith admitted that he didn’t want to record this humorous song. However, when he started playing it to people, he noticed them singing along almost immediately.
And then, Keith and the songwriting brothers did something that hadn’t happened in country music for the very first time: a video that made a song into being a single.
Aside from the song’s silly lyrics, Keith was concerned about making “Red Solo Cup” as a single.
“I was afraid since it says ‘testicles,’ radio won’t play it. They wouldn’t play ‘Weed With Willie,’ and this is even more extreme. But I had some radio guys tell me they would play it regardless.”
The radio guys were right! “Red Solo Cup” is certified double platinum, signifying sales in excess of two million units, and reached the Top 10 on Billboard’s country charts.
Watch Toby Keith and know why this hit became viral.