12 Jake Owen Songs That Secure Him for the Long Haul
Jake Owen's beach-ready surf songs mix well with heavy doses of straight-from-the-barroom honky-tonkers. The singer's catalog also features several love ballads and a new kind of early '00s rock-inspired grooves that are inspiring a renaissance.
Which Jake is your favorite Jake?
"Eight Second Ride" and "Startin' With Me" are two early Jake Owen songs that make this list of this 10 best hits. More recently, "I Was Jack (You Were Diane)" and "Down to the Honkytonk" have made a mark on concert stages and radio playlists. The slow transition from one style to the next has been fascinating and intentional. Somehow the Florida-born singer never lost his way while navigating trends, impulses and influences.
Now six studio albums into a decade-long career, there are plenty of hits to consider when ranking Jake Owen's best songs. We've also included a prime album cut that hooked the hearts of fans all over! Take a look at our list and then let us know what your favorite Jake Owen song is.
"Days of Gold" is by far Owen's loudest release to date. The song sets a blistering pace early on and leaves one gasping for air by the finish. Lyrically, it's about the golden days of your youth — a time when moving fast is the only thing that matters.
A steamy music video certainly helped this No. 1 hit go platinum in 2012, but Owen's tormented delivery of this love-for-a-night story makes it among his best of all time. It's not as strong as the ones ranked higher it on this list, but it's packed full of emotion.
Jake Owen's third single from Startin' With Me was most indicative of what's to come. "Something About a Woman" isn't his best love song, but it laid the framework for better efforts in the future. A great hook and catchy melody helped the 2007 cut reach the Top 20.
An album cut from Owen's final Sony album, "LAX" is a song that just wouldn't quit in the mind. A heartbreaking lyric written by the late Andrew Dorff complements a slow, aching hook. Owen had long tried to get emotional ballads right, and he succeeded on this song.
Owen seemed more comfortable on many songs from his second album, and the lead single was proof. Everything about this mid-tempo lover was a step above similar efforts on Startin' With Me. That's what an artist hopes to do when he cuts album No. 2. "Don't Think I Can't Love You" became Owen's first Top 5 hit.
"Startin' With Me" was an important answer to "Yee Haw," Owen's debut single in 2006. Rather than be pigeonholed as the newest party guy in country music, the singer delivered an astonishing personal story of remorse. He co-wrote this Kendall Marvel and Jimmy Ritchey and absolutely owns the "Startin' With Me" lyrics.
The pieces are in place for "Down to the Honkytonk" to end up as one of Owen's greatest songs — perhaps a new No. 1 on this list. It's tremendously catchy and universal. Plus there's the Sheila and tequila lyric, which is snort-out-loud funny.
Jake Owen cemented his legacy as the decade's definitive beach bum with "Beachin'," an easy-to-embrace summertime groove that rolls along like lazy waves on the shoreline. The song would become a platinum-selling No. 1 hit for Owen.
While critics were mixed in their reviews of "Eight Second Ride," fans are nearly unanimous in loving this song. It's a concert highlight and a great contrast to the more subdued, introspective singles Owen has released. The singer lets his hair down and throws it around on this 2009 single. It's also important for him, because he met his wife during the video shoot. That didn't work out in the end, but they had a pretty cute kid together who remains Owen's No. 1 priority in life.
After a false start with a song called "Real Life," Jake Owen reigned in his wild impulses to record "American Country Love Song" and songs on his American Love album. This was a more middle-of-the-road country-rocker that still proved to be interesting enough to hit No. 1 and go gold. It's a great song to sing along with live.
Now with a new record label, Owen delivered a song that relied on a classic rock hit instead of his own grooves. That seemed like a tremendous risk for an artist that many may have been looking forward to claiming had "peaked." The love story relied on the spoken-word style Owen has used frequently across songs on his six studio albums, and in this case familiarity meant popularity.
This is Owen's biggest commercial hit. "Barefoot Blue Jean Night" went double-platinum for two million singles sold. While the summertime story found its way to the hearts of so many country fans, the irresistible hook is what made it unforgettable. Eric Paslay led the writing team on this 2011 cut.