According to Webster’s, a duet is simply a musical composition for two voices or instruments. And the best thing about a duet is there are no guidelines for those voices. You could have a soulful married couple singing longingly to each other for the world to hear or just two friends singing about the demise of the music industry that’s given them everything. Or there’s even the option of recording a song without ever meeting a person. (Those are our least favorite kind.)
Here are our picks for greatest country music duets ever:
“The Heart Won’t Lie” // Reba McEntire and Vince Gill
Originally, Reba had talked about releasing this song with Kenny Rogers. Can you imagine? Surely the video wouldn’t have been the same. The single did reach the No. 1 spot on Billboard‘s Hot Country Songs chart.
“Jackson” // Johnny Cash and June Carter
It’s hard to pick a favorite duet between these two legends, but this one is it. Also, can you imagine someone singing a song like this about Jackson, Mississippi today? Probably wouldn’t make the cut. Only Johnny and June could make this song pop like it does.
“Islands in the Stream” // Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers
This is arguably the best duet of all-time, in any genre. It reached No. 1 on Billboard‘s Hot 100 chart and Country chart. Did you know the Bee Gees wrote it and Barry Gibb lends his vocals and guitar skills to the studio version? It’s all true.
“In Another’s Eyes” // Trisha Yearwood and Garth Brooks
Knowing what we know now about these two now, it’s hard to remember that they used to perform this while married to other people. Who cares. We love it.
“You’re the Reason Our Kids are Ugly” // Conway Twitty and Loretta Lynn
The wittiest song ever? Maybe, maybe not. But, one of our favorites nonetheless.
“Over and Over Again” // Tim McGraw and Nelly
And you thought “Cruise” was Nelly’s first dip into country music! Wrong! Way back in 2004 this classic reached No. 1 on Billboard‘s Pop Songs chart.
“The Only Promise That Remains” // Reba McEntire and Justin Timberlake
After meeting at the 2007 GRAMMY Awards, Justin Timberlake wrote this celtic-based song for Reba. Though it wasn’t a smashing success, it’s beautiful. Timberlake wrote it for Reba and you can really hear that in the song, as he plays a very background role.
“Safe and Sound” // Taylor Swift and the Civil Wars
“Safe and Sound” was supposed to be another song on another soundtrack. But, when these talented musicians got together, you got much more than that. You get this beautiful, sullen and empathic lullaby about a war. Let’s google “lullabies about war” together and report the results: not much.
“Walkaway Joe” // Trisha Yearwood and Don Henley
“Let’s Make Love” // Faith Hill and Tim McGraw
Whoa! Talk about keeping the fire alive in a marriage! This song did just that AND won the couple a GRAMMY for Best Country Collaboration with Vocals in 2001.
“Murder On Music Row” // George Strait and Alan Jackson
Traditional country music fans and critics love this one for its straight to the jugular approach to modern-day country music. It didn’t do that well commercially, but eventually won CMA’s Vocal Event of the Year and Song of the Year.
Image Source: YouTube