There was nothing subtle about Clint Black‘s rise on the country music scene in 1989. Once radio began to spin his “Better Man” single, Black found himself quickly on the A-list in the genre. His debut album, Killin’ Time, propelled him to stardom with four No. 1 hits — and remains one of the most-acclaimed debut albums of all time.
Since then, Black has continued to make plenty of vocal magic over the years, while also devoting a substantial amount of time to his family over the years. But, attend a concert of his, and you’ll be amazed at the career longevity — and the sheer amount of hits that he has weaved into the inner fabric of country music. Here are 10 Clint Black songs that made their impact — and then some!
Best Songs: Alabama | Alan Jackson | Alison Krauss | Billy Currington | Blake Shelton | Brad Paisley | Brett Eldredge | Brett Young | Carrie Underwood | Chris Stapleton | Conway Twitty | Cole Swindell | Darius Rucker | David Allen Coe| Dierks Bentley | Dixie Chicks | Dolly Parton | Dwight Yoakam | Eric Church | Faith Hill | Garth Brooks | Gary Allan| George Jones | George Strait | Glen Campbell | Hank Williams Jr. | Jason Aldean | Johnny Cash | John Denver | Justin Moore | Keith Urban | Kelsea Ballerini | Kenny Chesney | Kenny Rogers | Lady Antebellum | Little Big Town| Martina McBride | Merle Haggard | Miranda Lambert | Patsy Cline | Randy Travis | Rascal Flatts | Reba McEntire | Sam Hunt | Shania Twain | Sheryl Crow | Thomas Rhett | Tim McGraw | Toby Keith | Travis Tritt | Vince Gill | Waylon Jennings | Willie Nelson | Zac Brown Band
10. Clint Black – “Like The Rain”
Black’s Grammy-nominated 1996 performance offered a new perspective on a rainy night when you’re out in the elements with you significant other. The album version of this Clint Black song featured the sounds of rain and thunder at the start and the close of the record. The song — a single from his first Greatest Hits package — remains one of his more romantic tracks.
9. Clint Black – “Nothing’s News”
The fifth single from Killin’ Time, this song about looking back at a more pleasant time in life dominated the country music airwaves in the summer of 1990. The moodiness of the production brought to mind the mid 70s work of Merle Haggard.
8. Clint Black – “Something That We Do”
Black paired with highly-respected songwriter Skip Ewing to pen this noble explanation of love and its effects on a relationship, which made it all the way to No. 2 in the fall of 1997.
7. Clint Black – “Burn One Down”
Released in the fall of 1992, this Clint Black song performance has a definite throwback feel to it, as it sounded very much like something a George Jones or a Conway Twitty could have hit with 20 years or so earlier.
6. Clint Black – “Nothing But The Taillights”
Later in his career, Black began to collaborate with Steve Wariner from time to time, and the results were always entertaining. In this energetic track, Black is lamenting being left on the side of the road by his lady somewhere on the back roads of Kentucky.
5. Clint Black & Wynonna – “A Bad Goodbye”
When Black teamed up with Wynonna for their Black and Wy tour in 1993, the two realized that it might be a good idea to have a song to perform together during the shows. Black penned this evocative track, which served as the first single from his No Time To Kill album. At any other point of the year, the song would have no doubt become a No. 1 hit — but Alan Jackson‘s “Chattahoochee” proved to be too much for the song to overtake. However, the song that Billboard reviewed as “direct, moving, and majestic” at the time of its release stands as one of the best from both artists.
4. Clint Black – “Nobody’s Home”
With two straight number one hits to open up his career, Black stayed in the career fast lane song with this simple ballad about the art of going through the motions that we all do from time to time when going through a break-up. Everything around the singer seems to be the same, but he isn’t quite sure he will ever be in his previous state of mind again. Needless to say, the song did nothing to slow down Black’s career trajectory, becoming his third straight No. 1 hit.
3. Clint Black – “When I Said I Do”
As soon as Clint married Lisa Hartman in 1991, many wondered if the two would ever record together. After all, Hartman had recorded several albums herself before and during her run as Ciji Dunne/Cathy Geary on the CBS prime-time staple Knots Landing. However, it took a few years for them to do, but by the fall of 1999, you couldn’t escape this gentle declaration of love — not that you would want to!
2. Clint Black – “Better Man”
Nowadays, it’s possible for a new artist to hit number one out of the box with their first charted single. However, when Black did so in the spring of 1989 with this moving ballad about a man looking back with fondness on a past relationship and the lessons it taught him, it was the first time in over a decade that it had happened. Not only did he top the chart with the song, but when the dust settled, this introductory Clint Black song ranked as the number one country song of 1989 on Billboard‘s year-end list.
1. Clint Black – “Killin’ Time”
Right behind “Better Man” on the 1989 countdown was this classic showcase for his traditional vocal approach. The song had every ounce of the drama as many of the barroom performances that Black had grown up enamored with while growing up in Texas. He was one heck of a roll in 1989, as the one-two punch of his first two singles led to his being named the Horizon Award winner by the CMA at their awards ceremony in October.