THE MAN IN BLACK (HATS)

Sure, lots of singers wear them, but the stetson cowboy hat — Usually in black — Has been as much a part of Garth Brook's image as Brooks himself, from his first album to today.

75. COWBOYS FOREVER

The chorus will surely get people singing about a favorite country music subject, but this song says that cowboys "transformed a nation." How, exactly?

74. YOU WRECK ME

This would have been done well by Eagle-Eye Cherry, Fastball, Semisonic or another purveyor of '90s light alternarock. For Brooks, it just seems like an outdated reference to an unrelated genre.

73. I KNOW ONE

Brooks is a fool in love. That's about all there is to say about this bland strummer.

72. MR. BLUE

Whenever she proves her love is untrue, you're welcome to call him Mr. Blue. There's a little bit of swing, but otherwise it's another forlorn "she broke up with me" tune.

71. THE STORM

She has to move on from the emotional storm. She doesn't know how she will. But if there's anything we know from Brooks' catalog, it's that she will make it despite more bland references to thunder, rain and storms.

70. TO MAKE YOU FEEL MY LOVE

A too-slow ballad makes us want to fall asleep before we'd ever hear all the things he'd do to make her feel his love. Brooks' try at Bob Dylan's song just falls flat.

69. THE FEVER

Brooks let his live show get the best of him with this rip-roaring tune that's a series of guitar runs wrapped around a chorus that you can't possibly forget. It's "fever," in case you were wondering.

68. ROLLIN'

Apparently, love is like a highway and "you gotta keep it roll-in'." Fair enough. But how could you possibly understand without countless (pointless) guitar solos?

67. WALKING AFTER MIDNIGHT

Though it's a great country tune made famous by Patsy Cline, this one gets a vocal track phoned in by Brooks, who has proven he can muster that country swing. Why he decided to skip it on this take, we'll never know.

66. THE NIGHT I CALLED THE OLD MAN OUT

A decent story gets left behind with an arrangement that just feels average.

65. DIXIE CHICKEN

On his fourth album, "The Chase," Brooks tried a few different country-adjacent genres. He's good enough to pull it off, but this trek down to Dixieland feels the most odd. It's not that he sounds bad or his band can't pull off the blues-rock sound, but it's like a nice-looking but ill-fitting suit. The song might look good on the rack, but it doesn't quite fit.

64. THE DANCE

Countless couples have danced their first steps as husband and wife to this iconic song, probably not realizing it's about one great moment from a longdead relationship. An earworm of a pianomelody doesmore than the simplistic (and sappy and tired and ... oh please, not this song again) lyrics could ever hope to accomplish.

63. WHEN THERE'S NO ONE AROUND

What are we like when no one else is around? I guess this song is trying to say that we're our true selves. But it kinda comes off as the narrator having multiple personalities.

62. THICKER THAN BLOOD

A thick acoustic melody does a lot, but the song meanders through an unfocused mess about mixed families, a bloody truck crash and a lesson about loving our neighbors.

61. PEOPLE LOVING PEOPLE

Brooks takes aim at a Bon Jovi singalong jam that addresses the world's ills, but he'll never get there by sitting in a sludgy tempo or leaving his best vocal work for the last minute of the song. Step it up, Garth, and you might have had a memorable jam on your hands.

60. NEW WAY TO FLY

The harmonies on this tune are the only reason to keep coming back to it.

59.WHAT SHE'S DOING NOW

Actions taken in this song would likely constitute stalking. It's the best of Brooks' series of "I miss her" songs, but a really strong chorus can only do so much. (Though, apparently, that same chorus can turn a somewhat boring song into a really big hit.)

58. WHEN YOU COME BACK TO ME AGAIN

This theme to the film "Frequency" — a science fiction murder mystery that must have desperately wanted a star to sing its big song — sounds like it might be about the father-son connection of the film, but it was actually about Brooks' mother's death.

57. NOT COUNTING YOU

The lead-off track from Brooks' debut album, it's a little swing country that doesn't quite fit the subject: He's always been successful in the love department. But not this time. It's a clever concept that Brooks wrote himself, but the arrangement is a little off.

56. THE OLD STUFF

This must have been written to be his concert opener, because it seems to pander perfectly to any country crowd, right down to a bunch of city name drops, thanking the crew and talking about old songs.

55. WRAPPED UP IN YOU

Let Brooks count the ways he loves you. This honky-tonking tune won't win many points for originality, but it is a fun and jaunty little jam.

54. YOU MOVE ME

A middle-of-the-road, midtempo romantic piece may capture every element of your relationship. It may not.

53. A FRIEND TO ME

This is like a platonic love song: Good friends stick with you through good times and bad. The cheesiness is offset by Brooks' hardy delivery.

52. THE RED STROKES

A romance gets turned into a painting with many references to brush strokes and various colors. It's not bad enough to hate and not good enough to care about. It is exactly in the middle of this list.

51. WRONG ABOUT YOU

This take on the "I miss her" love song is new, but it doesn't say much more than others in Brooks' catalog.

50. TACOMA

Brooks lets it all out with a vocal performance that takes this average breakup song to a new level. A gospel choir singing backup gives it the best vocals on his latest album, "Man Against Machine."

49. SEND 'EM ON DOWN THE ROAD

There's only so much you can do as a parent, and Brooks (who took more than a decade away from the industry to be a dad) lays it all out here. He even admits "I guess I always knew those days would end." It might be overly sentimental, but all the moms and dads out there will take this one to heart.

48. BURNING BRIDGES

Someday he'll stop running off on women, but he's a restless soul. You wonder when this guy is gonna figure that out.

47. THIS AIN'T TENNESSEE

It's a pretty song, but it takes a few listens to figure out that it's written for a woman by a man lamenting that his Hollywood estate mansion and model girlfriend couldn't ever match up to what they had in Tennessee. This song needs a good editor.

46. COWBOY CADILLAC

A song for any man who loves his truck, "Cowboy Cadillac" is a display of country musicianship. But Brooks loses a few points for blatant comparisons of body parts to parts of his vehicle.

45. PUSHING UP DAISIES

Charisma from Brooks and a swinging set of fiddle solos save this song about living your life while you can. Despite a misstep on the third verse, the song is one you can listen to over and over again just for the music.

44. EVERY NOW AND THEN

For some reason, Brooks loves this kind of nostalgic look at loves past. This is the most direct version of that tale, with some vivid images of hearing old songs, sitting in the rain and, yes, thinking about her every now and then.

43. TAKE THE KEYS TO MY HEART

Car metaphors get mixed in with a rollicking love song. Probably not a tune you'd call a favorite, but not one you'd skip when it came on either.

42. WHY AIN'T I RUNNING

It sounds like the rodeo cowboy from Brooks' biggest hits — the guy who is always running off to ride the next bronco — finally settled down. Something about this woman has kept him from heading out for the highway once again.

41. SHE'S GONNA MAKE IT

We've all seen this one: Couple breaks up. One sails on for better waters. The other capsizes and drowns. Brooks lays it out well in this heartbreaking single.

40. THAT SUMMER

Teenage kid. Older woman. Torrid romance. On first listen, it's an engaging and vivid scene about two people making a connection. Further listens feel a little uncomfortable as you begin to analyze Brooks' all-too-excited delivery of metaphors about thunder, undulating wheat fields and "riding the heat of passion." That said, it's a fun song that tells a memorable story.

39. THE BEACHES OF CHEYENNE

This tragedy of a woman who goes crazy after her husband dies bull riding is a shimmering sing along and heart-rending, but we're still confused by one thing: Cheyenne doesn't have beaches. It sounds pretty, but that little line is still annoying to wrap your head around.

38. FISH

Who has the better idea: The guy who fishes all day and enjoys himself, or the guy who wants to make it a business so he can one day enjoy himself? Brooks does his best impression of the Jimmy Buffett easy-living beach song, and it works out all right.

37. IN LONESOME DOVE

It can't live up to the book or miniseries, but it captures a little feel of the fictional Texas village and the epic Western series that surrounds it.

36. FIT FOR A KING

An alcoholic, homeless street preacher is made into an angel in this dirge. If you're a believer, this will hit you hard. And if you're not, it's still an engaging listen.

35. I DON'T HAVE TO WONDER

After all those "I miss her" songs, Brooks finally lets the girl get married. Now he doesn't have to wonder what she's doing now. Brooks channels that emotion to sing this one better than any of the others.

34. IT'S MIDNIGHT CINDERELLA

Country swing and fairy tale characters make for an entertaining jaunt. Plus Brooks sings "bippity boppity boo."

33. COLD SHOULDER

You can really get roped in by this one, which describes a romantic candlelight scene before revealing it's all in the narrator's mind. You see, he's driving an 18-wheeler on the freezing-cold highway. Good work, Garth. You got me.

32. IN ANOTHER'S EYES

This duet with Yearwood lets the duo's natural chemistry shine with a brilliant sparkle. It's a sort of anti-love song about living up to what your partner sees in you, and it's given all the more weight when they sing it together.

31. SOMEWHERE OTHER THAN THE NIGHT

One of Brooks' best-ever vocal performances comes on this short peek into a relationship rekindled. If only this big ballad were fleshed out with a couple more verses.

30. TWO OF A KIND, WORKIN' ON A FULL HOUSE

Swinging fiddle and some intentionally goofy metaphors makes this family portrait tune into a fun time. Anyone with a family can imagine a silly Saturday at home like this.

29. ALL-AMERICAN KID

A fiddle-fueled tune about a kid who plays football and goes off to war is sure to tug on heartstrings and make you feel patriotic, especially the hair-raising final chorus.

28. DON'T CROSS THE RIVER

In this cover of America's 1972 song, Brooks brings the bluegrass for a toe-tapping sing along you can imagine being played around a campfire.

27. RODEO AND JULIET

This country-Shakespearian mash-up works better than it has any right to. Even if you're looking for a fault, you won't find it. I tried, and I just ended up loving this song more.

26. THE RIVER

A challenge to follow your dreams, this ballad is filled with emotion. Harmony vocals from Yearwood really drive it home.

25. DO WHAT YOU GOTTA DO

An infectious energy drives this jam, and it's one that I'd love to see performed live. It's not a well-known single, but it would be a perfect lead-off song to get people on their feet and get Brooks running around the stage.

24. WE SHALL BE FREE

Garth goes gospel. And it works. Rarely does this step outside of genre sound any better than vanity, but Brooks actually pulls it off with a bit of heart and a big helping of gospel singers backing him.

23. COWBOY BILL

A good story song, this one tells an inspiring tale. When an old cowboy, fond of spinning tall tales for kids, is found to be telling the truth, the song swells and so do our hearts.

22. IF TOMORROW NEVER COMES

Take the opportunity to tell your love how much you care, just in case. Co-written by Brooks, it's a redux on a carpe diem love song.

21. MOM

Come Sunday, lots of moms and their kids will share hugs and tears over this tune. (It will definitely bring down the house when he plays it this weekend in Omaha.) It's the best song on his latest album.

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