The American country music artist known as Gary Allan first broke into the business as a singer-songwriter in 1996 at the age of fifteen after doing honky-tonk gigs with his father out of the southeast Los Angeles, California region. Despite already having a recording contract at the age of fifteen, Allan was determined to finish high school before embarking on a full-time career making music. All of the thirty-two singles he has released have appeared on various music charts, and out of his ten studio albums, three have been certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), and four of them have become certified Gold. One out of his two compilation albums has also received certification, namely Gold.
#10 – Tough Little Boys
Written and released in 2003, the single “Tough Little Boys” comes from Gary Allan’s album See If I Care. It would be the second of four number one hits on the US Billboard Hot Country Songs chart the country singer-songwriter would earn for himself. The song also made an appearance on the US Billboard Hot 100, which peaked in thirty-second place. The big appeal for the song among fans and music critics is the story of a father who always fancied himself to be a tough little boy later discovering fatherhood suddenly made him not so tough after all. There was also a considerable amount of reference made in the chorus toward the 1956 film classic “Old Yeller.”
#9 – Man to Man
Coming from the album Alright Guy, which was released on October 2, 2001, is the song “Man to Man.” When this single was released in 2002, it became the first number-one single on the US Billboard Hot Country Songs chart in Gary Allan’s career. The story behind the song revolved around two men that should have resolved their issues, man to man, over the mutual rivalry they had with each other over a girlfriend.
#8 – It Ain’t the Whiskey
The hit single “It Ain’t the Whiskey” comes from Allan’s 2013 album Set You Free, which was released in 2013. While it only appeared on the US Billboard Hot Country Songs chart in fortieth place, the number of copies sold certified It Ain’t the Whiskey as Gold with the RIAA. The ballad revolves around a lost love while at spending time with a support group that features a standout guitar solo that made the song as popular as it had become among the fans of Allan’s brand of country music.
#7 – Songs About Rain
Considered as a slow and epic single, “Songs About Rain” comes from Gary Allan’s album See If I Care, which was released in 2003. With the Canadian RPM Country music chart, the song peaked at number ten while on the US Billboard Hot Country Songs chart at twelfth. Despite the charts not being as favorable towards Songs About Rain, the number of copies sold for it to achieve RIAA’s Gold certification strongly suggested otherwise. The big highlight of the song is where Gary Allan mentions the titles of specific singles that are indeed songs about rain.
#6 – Life Ain’t Always Beautiful
From the 2005 album Tough All Over is the single “Life Ain’t Always Beautiful,” which peaked as high as the fourth spot on the US Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. Since its October 11th release, Tough All Over has become certified by the RIAA as Gold. The song received much critical acclaim, thanks to Allan’s emotional performance put into its delivery.
#5 – Right Where I Need to Be
Coming from the RIAA Platinum-certified album Smoke Rings in the Dark, Gary Allan’s single “Right Where I Need to Be” peaked at number five on the US Billboard Hot Country Songs chart in the year 2000. Although the chart rankings don’t really show it, Right Where I Need to Be became one of Gary Allan’s most commercially successful singles as it joined the album to become certified Platinum.
#4 – Best I Ever Had
Originally written and recorded as “Best I Ever Had (Grey Sky Mountain)” by the alternative rock band known as Vertical Horizon in 1999, Gary Allan’s 2005 version, which he titled “Best I Ever Had,” sold enough copies to earn the song certified Platinum with the RIAA. It also reached a seventh-place rank on the US Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. The album “Tough All Over” became certified Gold.
#3 – Watching Airplanes
Released in 2007 was “Watching Airplanes,” which comes from Gary Allan’s album “Living Hard.” The song would become the tenth of his hits to crack into the top ten of the US Billboard Hot Country Songs chart, which peaked at its highest in second. It also achieved Platinum certification from the RIAA while the album became certified Gold. During the 2008 Academy of Country Music Awards, it was nominated for Single Record of the Year.
#2 – Nothing On but the Radio
Released on September 30, 2003, is Gary Allan’s fifth studio album “See If I Care” and it since became his third record to become certified Platinum by the RIAA. The single “Nothing On but the Radio” earned itself Gold certification, and in 2004 earned the top rank with the US Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. In Canada, it charted sixth. It would be the third time Gary Allan would top the country music chart, but not the last. In 2005, Nothing On but the Radio received an award from the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) for becoming one of the most-played country songs of the year.
#1 – Every Storm (Runs Out of Rain)
The album “Set You Free” was released on January 22, 2013, and since become certified Gold by the RIAA. The single “Every Storm (Runs Out of Rain)” was actually released before the album on September 12, 2012, and it sold enough copies to earn RIAA’s double Platinum certification. Hillary Lindsey co-wrote and sang backup for the song with Allan. On the music charts, it peaked at number one with the US Billboard Hot Country Songs, the US Billboard Country Airplay, and the Country Canada Billboard chart.
Top 10 Gary Allan Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2021
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