Horses are an integral part of Western and rural American culture. Due to their loyalty, strength, and love, they have inspired several songs. This article will look at the best country songs about horses.
1. “Beer For My Horses” by Toby Keith feat. Willie Nelson
Song Year: 2002
Toby Keith tells a story about horses with this 2002 track, “Beer For My Horses.” The song came out in 2002 as the fifth track from his album, Unleashed, and “Beer For My Horses” was so popular it hit the number one spot on the country charts.
In the song, Keith describes fighting injustice alongside his friends and horses, riding into battle, and celebrating with a round of cold drinks.
“Beer For My Horses” was so popular it spawned this remix with Willie Nelson, a music video, and a feature film in 2009.
2. “He Rides the Wild Horses” by Chris LeDoux
Song Year: 1981
Chris LeDoux self-released an album called “He Rides The Wild Horses” in 1981, and this song was the titular track. It’s about a free-spirited rodeo rider who likes to spend time with wild horses. LeDoux describes the man’s odd pastime, saying that the rodeo man relates to the wild and free horses.
The track has a slow, twangy beat with guitar and LeDoux’s smoothly accented voice. It also features a soft female vocal ensemble.
3. “Ballad of a Runaway Horse” by Emmylou Harris
Song Year: 1993
Listen to “Ballad of a Runaway Horse” and hear Emmylou Harris’s bright, soprano voice sing about a horse that got away. The song is from her album, Cowgirl’s Prayer, and the lyrics follow a cowgirl going through some difficulties. While at first glance it may seem she’s pining after her lost horse, we later see that her “runaway horse” is her lover who has left her.
“Ballad of a Runaway Horse” is a new country song, and Harris released it before her big break in 1995. Nevertheless, it remains a favorite tune of many fans.
4. “A Horse With No Name” by America
Song Year: 1971
“A Horse With No Name” is a classic country track by America, a rock band with members from the US and UK. The song came out in 1971 and is, to date, their most popular song of all time.
America released the song with the second version of their self-titled album, America, and the track gained them worldwide acclaim. The song, famous for featuring in many films and television shows, is about a lone rider wandering the desert on his trusty horse.
5. “Tennessee Stud” by Doc Watson
Song Year: 1966
“Tennessee Stud” is an iconic country track by Doc Watson. Watson was a singer, songwriter, and guitarist from North Carolina, where he was involved in the bluegrass, gospel, and country music scenes.
The musician covered “Tennessee Stud” in 1966 for his album, Southbound. Originally by Jimmy Driftwood, the song is a ballad about a man’s adventures with his horse.
6. “Chestnut Mare” by The Byrds
Song Year: 1970
Chestnut or night eye horses are some of the most beautiful horse breeds. Their distinctive reddish color inspired this 1970 song by The Byrds, a rock fusion band from Los Angeles. They recorded it in June 1970, releasing it just four months later.
Listen to The Byrds dabble in country rock with this guitar-filled track. Frontman James Roger McGuinn sings about a beautiful chestnut mare, revealing later in the song that the horse symbolizes a girl he likes who reminds him of a chestnut horse.
7. “Wildflowers and Wild Horses” by Lainey Wilson
Song Year: 2022
Lainey Wilson is a country singer from Louisiana, and she’s been performing since her childhood. She lends her powerful soprano voice to this 2022 track about wild horses and the natural environment.
“Wildflowers and Wild Horses” is the thirteenth track of her hit album, Bell Bottom Country, and the song is about Wilson’s roots in the rugged country of rural North America. She describes nights under a starry sky, hiking the trails, and seeing wild horses.
8. “Wild Horses” by Garth Brooks
Song Year: 1990
We’d be remiss if we didn’t include a Garth Brooks song on this list. The horse lover from Tulsa has written many songs about the equines, but “Wild Horses” is perhaps one of the best.
“Wild Horses” is a song that follows Brooks on the road touring as he misses his loved one. He sings about how he feels like wild horses are dragging him from his lover and want to go home to her.
9. “Six White Horses” by Tommy Cash
Song Year: 1970
Check out “Six White Horses” by Tommy Cash, a classic track from 1970. It has a moving beat, acoustic guitar, a male vocal ensemble, and music production by Glenn Sutton.
Cash is the younger brother of the singer Johnny Cash, but he’s a great singer by himself. “Six White Horses” puts Tommy Cash’s rich vocals on display, and the artist says his goodbyes to his late friends, painting imagery of white horses taking them past the veil.