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This Month in History: 5 Classic Songs With Milestone Birthdays in May

Wikimedia Commons and Flickr/ Craig ONeal

This month (May 2018) marks key anniversaries for these songs that topped the country charts. The list goes back 50 years and represents trends in the changing world of country music. From the late Glen Campbell's first number one to yet another chart-topper by George Strait, this serves as a pretty telling history lesson. Each song listed topped the charts at some point in May during the specified year.

1968: "I Wanna Live" By Glen Campbell

It's not as famous as future interpretations of Jimmy Webb and John Hartford songs, but Campbell's first number one hit says a lot about late '60s country and pop music. The Arkansas farm boy turned sought-after session musician takes part in another lush studio creation here, working with the sorts of string arrangements that took Nashville uptown.

1978: "It's All Wrong, But It's All Right" By Dolly Parton

Although it's not iconic now, Parton's seventh number one hit bolstered her legendary status as a singer and songwriter. It's the county half of a split A-side with top 20 pop single "Two Doors Down," coming after Dolly transcended genre and became an international celebrity. With very suggestive lyrics about a woman itching to have an affair, it's a wonder this one made it past censors.

1988: "Eighteen Wheels And A Dozen Roses" By Kathy Mattea

For several years, the country music floodgates opened to artists outside of the Nashville mold. The same moment in time that brought us Lyle Lovett, Mary Chapin Carpenter and others gifted fans with this still poignant single and music video about an aging truck driver's enduring marriage.

Read More: 8 Pop Hits That Were Covers of Classic Country Songs

1998: "This Kiss" by Faith Hill

As both traditional and mainstream country gave way to crossover pop, talented women owned the charts. While Shania Twain rewrote history, Hill made her own impact with this up-tempo song about puppy love.

2008: "I Saw God Today" by George Strait

While many of the songs listed here signaled a superstar's arrival, this recent Strait hit helped cap a legendary run of hit singles. Instead of returning to the same old well of Western imagery and country love songs, King George explored gospel music, adding his own touch to the sort of song that'd already done wonders for folks like John Michael Montgomery and Randy Travis.

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This Month in History: 5 Classic Songs With Milestone Birthdays in May