There’s no shortage of great songs in Music City. There are songwriters who spend nearly every day attempting to pen the next hit song. But sometimes songs are so special that multiple artists have to try their hand at recording them. From a younger artist covering a country legend to a singer paying tribute to a peer who died too young, we gathered up a list of country classics as sung by two different performers. Who sang it better? Above, you’ll have a chance to vote on which rendition you like best.
“Ol’ Red” George Jones vs. Blake Shelton
George Jones first recorded this tale of incarceration and puppy love on his 1990 album You Oughta Be Here With Me. In 2002, Blake Shelton revived the song and took it to No. 14 on the country charts.
“Pancho and Lefty” Townes Van Zandt vs. Merle Haggard and Willie Nelson
Revered Texas troubadour Townes Van Zandt wrote and recorded “Pancho and Lefty” for his 1972 album The Late Great Townes Van Zandt. “Pancho and Lefty” became a signature song for Merle Haggard and Willie Nelson when they recorded it in 1983. The pair even made a music video for the cinematic song with Townes making a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameo.
“The Blues Man” Hank Williams Jr. vs. Alan Jackson
Hank Williams Jr. may be known for his rowdy country rock but the man knows how to write a heartfelt love song. Bocephus wrote and recorded “The Blues Man” for his 1980 album Habits Old and New. Alan Jackson covered the song for his 1999 album Under the Influence. The two men performed the song together at the 2000 ACM awards.
“When You Say Nothing At All” Keith Whitley vs. Alison Krauss
“When You Say Nothing At All,” written by Paul Overstreet and Don Schlitz, is one of the most recognized and beloved country love songs of the 80s and 90s. The song was originally recorded by Keith Whitley for his 1988 album Don’t Close Your Eyes and went on to reach the No. 1 spot. In 1995, Alison Krauss and Union Station covered the song for a Keith Whitley tribute album. To their surprise, the song became a smash hit once again, peaking at No. 3 on the Billboard country chart.
“Fancy” Bobbie Gentry vs. Reba McEntire
“Fancy” is one of Reba McEntire’s signature songs. It’s instantly recognizable from its opening riffs and serves as the perfect song to belt out in your car. But the story of “Fancy” actually begins 20 years before Reba’s recording. Bobbie Gentry wrote and recorded the Southern Gothic classic in 1969. Gentry’s rendition peaked at No. 8 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart in 1970. In 1991, Reba McEntire released her cover of the song, which made it to the Top 10 on the country charts.