Celebrate the Heart of Country, Americana, and Roots Music!

Drop Us A Line, Y'all

Y'all interested in advertising, partnering up, contributing stories, joining our team, or just got a question? Well, don't be shy, drop us a line!

Follow Us

Who Wrote “Tennessee Whiskey” And Who Sang It First?

Who Wrote Tennessee Whiskey And Who Sang It First?
by

“Tennessee Whiskey” has Chris Stapleton to thank for its No. 1 at the US Billboard Hot Country Songs. Stapleton and Justin Timberlake’s medley of the song at the 2015 Country Music awards drove it to greater popularity. But who wrote “Tennessee Whiskey” and who sang it first? 

The song was originally written by Dean Dillon and Linda Hargrove back in 1981. They met together in Nashville at a cafe called Bluebird and then went on to write the song at Hargrove’s house. 

When it was finished, the song was first pitched to George Strait, but he turned it down. David Alan Coe was the country music artist who originally recorded “Tennessee Whiskey.” He made the song the title track of his 1981 album of the same name Tennessee Whiskey

Coe’s version managed to reach No. 77 on the Billboard’s Hot Country Songs Chart. Another country music artist, George Jones, then covered the song, and his version reached No. 2 on the US Billboard Hot Country Singles.  

But it was singer-songwriter Chris Stapleton’s R&B-influenced version of “Tennessee Whiskey” that pushed the song to reach No. 23 on Billboard Hot 100, and No. 1 on the Hot Country Songs Chart. 

Stapleton performed “Tennessee Whiskey” with Justin Timberlake at the 2015 CMA which proved to be a life-changing night for Stapleton and “Tennessee Whiskey” as both became an overnight sensation. 

Stapleton won three CMA trophies and the song sold 131,000 downloads the following week. The numbers continued to go up, until in May 2016, “Tennessee Whiskey” was marked platinum by the RIAA. 

Despite being propelled to stardom by Stapleton, “Tennessee Whiskey” was written by Dean Dillon and Linda Hargrove at 4 AM in Nashville and was first recorded by David Alan Coe. 

Latest Stories

Keith Urban Still Tries to 'Impress' Wife Nicole Kidman with His Concerts

Keith Urban Always Aims to Impress Wife Nicole Kidman Onstage

To anyone who said love is dead hasn’t surely met Keith Urban and Nicole Kidman. The longtime couple of almost 18 years –with two kids, Sunday and Faith – is ...

Martina McBride + God's Will

Martina McBride’s “God’s Will” is a Message of Hope

Released in November 2004, “God’s Will” is a faith-filled country song that will lift up your spirits. Martina McBride’s chart-topping songs such as “A Broken Wing” and “Wrong Again” have ...

The Lumineers + Cleopatra

Unravel a Nostalgic Feeling with The Lumineers’ “Cleopatra”

Written by Wesley Schultz and Jeremiah Fraites, The Lumineers’ “Cleopatra” is a notable record for its raw and acoustic sound. Released on March 25, 2016, the song was a track ...

Montgomery Gentry + Lucky Man

“Lucky Man” by Montgomery Gentry is Indeed a Lucky Song

Kentucky natives Eddie Montgomery and Troy Gentry released a single, “Lucky Man,” in January 2007 to express gratitude and appreciation for life despite its negativities. It was the second single ...

Mo Pitney + Duct Tape and Jesus

Story Behind Mo Pitney’s Hit Song “Duct Tape and Jesus”

It seems that Mo Pitney has stayed true to his words and kept traditional country music relevant with his new song, “Duct Tape and Jesus.” American country singer Morgan Daniel ...

Dolly Parton + Power in the Blood

Dolly Parton’s Cover of “Power in The Blood”: A Gospel Classic Reimagined

With a career in the country music scene for over 50 years, Parton is known for singing several gospel songs, like “The Seeker,” “I Believe,” and “Daddy Was An Old ...

Al Dexter Death

Al Dexter: Honky Tonk Pioneer’s Legacy After Death

American country musician and songwriter Al Dexter has written and recorded numerous Western country songs like Pistol Packin’ Mama, which have become big hits. That is why the world was ...

The Statler Brothers + Rock of Ages

Believe in God’s All-Powerful Ability with The Statler Brothers Cover of “Rock of Ages”

In 1992, The Statler Brothers released a cover of the hit gospel song “Rock of Ages” on their album Gospel Favorites. The song was originally written as a hymn by ...

Dolly Parton and Willie Nelson + Everything's Beautiful (In Its Own Way)

Dolly Parton and Willie Nelson’s Amazing First Duet with “Everything’s Beautiful (In Its Own Way)”

In 1982, Dolly Parton and Willie Nelson released their first-ever collaboration song, “Everything’s Beautiful (In Its Own Way),” as part of Dolly Parton’s studio album, My Favorite Songwriter, Porter Wagoner.  ...

Crazy Horse + I Don't Want to Talk About It

Meaning Behind Crazy Horse Song “I Don’t Want to Talk About It”

In 1971, known American country rock band Crazy Horse released “I Don’t Want To Talk About It” as part of their debut album of the same name.  The band consists ...