Country Music Song Subjects

We all hear the cliche about country music songs being all about the singers dogs and their trucks and such … but really? Are there actual country songs about the singers trucks? Their dogs?

I mean, I wouldn’t be surprised, but does anyone have any examples?


Kip Moore: Something About A Truck
Tim McGraw: Truck Yeah
Toby Keith: Big Ol’ Truck

for starters

“M” is for the mudflaps she gave me for my pickup truck." - Redneck Mother, Ray Hubbard

Convoy, C.W. McCall (who did a lot of trucker songs)

Old Blue, a traditional folk song about a dog, sung by a variety of singers, including Joan Baez.

Here’s one about a cheating wife and a dog, although the dog isn’t the singers. Ol’ Red by Blake Shelton

Cheatin’ dogs are the worst!

Mandatory reference to “You Never Even Called Me By My Name” which references trucks, being drunk, Mama, trains, death and prison…

More Dogs:

“Old Shep” by Red Foley (covered by Hank Snow and Elvis Presley)
“Dirty Old Egg-Suckin’ Dog” by Johnny Cash

And mandatory ancient bad joke:
Q: what do you get when you play your country records backwards?
A: you get back your truck, wife, dog, etc.

How Come My Dog Don’t Bark When You Come Around? - Dr. John

Perhaps not country music, however.

Country music isn’t about that stuff anymore. Except for the truck part. But not 18 wheelers. Pick Up trucks. Only pickup trucks. And it’s about the old swimmin’ hole. I guess Momma and Daddy still qualify. The old hometown that don’t exist anymore. And America. A whole lot of America. Won’t get quibby here, not the right thread. But it’s all nostalgia mixed with a cold beer on a Friday night. I prefer Outlaw Country. It still has some of that shit in it.

Tom T. Hall: Old Dogs, Children and Watermelon Wine

Tom T. Hall is my default answer for everything good about country music.

You know that Ray Wylie Hubbard was being sarcastic? That song was not dedicated to a rural maternal figure–but to the stereotypical inbred of those days who enjoyed beating up longhairs. More recently he wrote this one–which he introduces by saying “the trouble with irony is that not everybody gets it.”

The Dillards perform"Old Blue"–& refer to Joan’s version. In which you hear their classic bluegrass & the humor that made them regulars on Andy Griffith’s show. (Before they split up to help create Country Rock with Wheatstraw Suite–and the Dillard & Clark Expedition.)

If you want to learn about Country Music, listen to some. But I’d recommend starting with Old Timey & moving through Western Swing, Honky Tonk, Bluegrass & what’s called “Americana” nowadays. Listen to modern commercial country radio at your peril…

Carrie Underwood’s “Before He Cheats” is about a woman getting revenge on a cheating boyfriend by smashing up his truck –

I dug my key into the side
Of his pretty little souped-up four-wheel drive,
Carved my name into his leather seats…
I took a Louisville slugger to both headlights,
Slashed a hole in all four tires

Then there’s R W Couch & the Bum Steers. More famed for the cover of their LP than its contents.

(Yes, there was a Divorce Hotel on North Main some years ago.)

Yes, a lot of trucks and dogs.

Here’s one about Hank 3’s dog Trooper.
And Johnny Cash on the Dirty Old Egg-Sucking Dog.
Alan Jackson - Drive about fathers teaching their kids to drive boats and trucks.
Brad Paisley has a new truck and wants to take his honey to get a little Mud on the Tires.

And not just trucks but tractors too.
Another about tractors, International Harvester.

Maybe the list of songs not about trucks mama and dogs is a shorter one.

There’s “I Drive Your Truck.”

Plus, a ton of songs which mention trucks.

Oh, God, “I Drive Your Truck” makes me cry every freakin’ time.

Today’s country music is heavy on pop psychology. Think of songs like “I Hope You Dance” and “Live Like You Were Dying.”

Feed Jake by Pirates of the Mississippi is one about a dog.