We've put together a list some of the most inspiring and motivational country songs about celebrating life's blessings. Plus everyone needs a holiday playlist after Halloween and before all the Christmas songs take over. (No, Adam Sandler's "The Thanksgiving Song" didn't make the list. We're focusing on feelings here.)
Give these a listen while you're cooking up the mashed potatoes and sweet potato pie for your own turkey day this year. This list doesn't include Thanksgiving songs you learned in Kindergarten such as the old timey "Over the River and Through the Woods" or the Vince Guaraldi Trio's soundtrack for A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving (the "Thanksgiving Theme" is one of the best songs associated with the Peanuts gang). Pop classics like Bing Crosby's "I've Got Plenty to Be Thankful For" and Little Eva's "Let's Turkey Trot" didn't make the cut, and we skip more recent "Thank U's" from Alanis Morissette and Ariana Grande.
That said, these songs are guaranteed to pull at your heartstrings and speak to you personally this season.
10. "Thanking the Good Lord," Merle Haggard
Merle Haggard's 'Thanking the Good Lord" is a perfect tune for reflecting on the blessings in our life.
9. "Rain is a Good Thing," Luke Bryan
This may not be the most obvious choice for a Thanksgiving song, but what better way of turning a negative into a positive than celebrating rain? And hearing about it from American treasure Luke Bryan is a win-win for me. While 99% of songs about rain see it as a bad thing, Luke reminds us how incredibly important it is. And you can't have Thanksgiving dinner without giving thanks for the food on your plate.
8. "This," Darius Rucker
7. "Be Grateful," The Farm
While your situation in life may not be ideal, "Be Grateful" reminds us that things could be much worse. Find joy about where you're at in life this Thanksgiving while you're cooking up something good in the kitchen. Who doesn't feel better with a apple pie warming in the oven?
6. "Thanksgiving Song," Mary Chapin Carpenter
This selection from Mary Capin Carpenter's holiday album Come Darkness, Come Light: Twelve Songs of Christmas is not about gobbling up pumpkin pie or cranberries (how weird would that be?). Instead, it's a gentle, piano-based song about appreciating loved ones.
5. "But For the Grace of God," Keith Urban
Some love songs make the best Thanksgiving songs. With just a guitar and Keith's voice, you can really hear the message: "Through all of the trials and tribulations of life, but for the grace of God go I."
4. "The Best Day," Taylor Swift
Confession time: This video makes me cry every time I watch it. Every time! It's just filled with so much love. You can tell how much Taylor's family loves her, and it's wonderful to see her repay them with such a beautiful tribute. This song reminds us that sometimes you've got plenty to be thankful for.
3. "Lucky Man," Montgomery Gentry
One of the best country songs of the past 20 years, "Lucky Man" really drives home how important it is to be grateful for your blessings. It's a definite must add to your Thanksgiving playlist. When it's too easy to complain about what gets you down, take a second and be thankful for what you have.
2. "Blessed," Martina McBride
If Thanksgiving day had an official theme song, this would be it. Martina McBride sure is blessed with her incredible voice of an angel, but in this song she celebrates her most important blessing of all: her family. Of all these holiday songs, this truly encompasses the meaning of the season.
1. "Coat of Many Colors," Dolly Parton
This song is so beautiful that it deserves a special place on the list. There isn't much more that can be said about Dolly Parton's "Coat of Many Colors." It's simply a perfect country hit performed by a living legend. There are plenty of versions out there, but this one recorded at The Ryman is one of the best. Dolly really explains why the song is so important to her.
This story originally ran on Nov. 24, 2015.
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