2012: Over You
> Songwriter(s): Miranda Lambert, Blake Shelton
> Performer / recording artist: Miranda Lambert
> Number of weeks on Billboard 100: 22 weeks between Jan. 14, 2012 and June 9, 2012
Blake Shelton and his then-wife Miranda Lambert worked together on this song, based on Shelton’s experience as a teenager of the death of his older brother in a car accident. Shelton thought recording the song himself would take too heavy an emotional toll, so Lambert took it on. It reached No. 1 on the Billboard country charts.
2013: I Drive Your Truck
> Songwriter(s): Jessi Alexander, Connie Harrington, Jimmy Yeary
> Performer / recording artist: Lee Brice
> Number of weeks on Billboard 100: 22 weeks between Dec. 22, 2012 and May 18, 2013
Singer-songwriter Lee Brice (whose hits include “Hard to Love” and “I Don’t Dance”) was strictly the performer on this heartfelt song about a man who drives the truck owned by his late brother, killed in military service. Co-writer Connie Harrington got the idea for the song after hearing a radio interview with a man whose son had been killed in Afghanistan, and who still drove his boy’s truck to feel close to him. Also contributing to the song were Jessi Alexander and Jimmy Yeary, both of whom have charted both as performers and songwriters.
2014: Follow Your Arrow
> Songwriter(s): Kacey Musgraves, Shane McAnally, Brandy Clark
> Performer / recording artist: Kacey Musgraves
> Number of weeks on Billboard 100: 20 weeks between Nov. 23, 2013 and April 5, 2014
Kasey Musgraves both performed and co-wrote this song about being true to oneself. Her fellow composers, who are also both recording artists and songwriters, were Brandy Clark and her frequent writing partner Shane McAnally. Among the other collaborations between Clark, McAnally, and Musgraves was the 2011 Miranda Lambert hit “Mama’s Broken Heart.”
2015: Girl Crush
> Songwriter(s): Liz Rose, Lori McKenna and Hillary Lindsey
> Performer / recording artist: Little Big Town
> Number of weeks on Billboard 100: 38 weeks between Nov. 8, 2014 and Aug. 22, 2015
Country and Americana singer-songwriter Lori McKenna worked with songwriters Liz Rose (who shared a 2010 Grammy for Best Country Song with Taylor Swift for “White Horse”) and Hillary Lindsey. Lindsey shared Best Country Song Grammys for both Carrie Underwood’s “Jesus, Take the Wheel” and this Little Big Town hit.
2016: Humble and Kind
> Songwriter(s): Lori McKenna
> Performer / recording artist: Tim McGraw
> Number of weeks on Billboard 100: 26 weeks between Feb. 6, 2016 and July 30, 2016
Lori McKenna has released 10 albums of her own and written more than 80 songs, recorded by such artists as Faith Hill, Keith Urban, Reba McEntire, Carrie Underwood. She also wrote three songs for Tim McGraw, both as a solo artist and in duet with Hill, his wife. McKenna says she wrote this song for her husband and five kids.