Growing up there was always music on in my house. CSNY, Van Morrison, Steely Dan, and for Sunday mornings, the smooth stylings of Kenny G.
Nowadays, I enjoy country music even though it tries to convince me to drop $400 on cowboy boots that I’ll wear once to a concert. And classic rock brings me back to a simpler time when my dad entertained the neighbors with song from our back deck. And I will happily admit to liking pop because if you don’t dance a little (a lot) to a Lady Gaga hook then you must be dead inside.
But one day I hear a Ben Rector song and there was simply no going back. His singer-songwriter tunes, they are something special, and Alexa doesn’t even bother waiting until I finish my sentence before she starts playing Old Friends or Forever Like That.
So for your reading and listening pleasure, some of Ben Rector’s best work in my humble opinion.
Note: Since writing this article in 2017 Ben has come out with several more albums and they are all excellent. But these songs still have a super special place in my heart and I am willing to bet will get you hooked too.
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10 Best Ben Rector Songs That Will Have You Hooked
In case you want to sob uncontrollably alone in your living room between emails. Rips my heart out every single time. And then I press play again. Ben, if you found this on the interwebs, know that this song helped me feel less lonely during our miscarriages. The power of art, man.
If you argued with your spouse about laundry earlier that day and you want to feel real bad about yourself. Or if you are looking for a good wedding song.
A straight up JAM for suburbanites.
A sample lyric: “We got off work and met at Bed, Bath and Beyond. You looked at curtains, I bought a birthday card for mom. We wanted tacos, but the taco truck was gone. Last night was crazy, yeah.”
To remind yourself to start working on that to-do list and also to stop being the worst.
When you feel like being reflective but also want a catchy chorus stuck in your head for the rest of your life. “I’ve been better, I’ve been worse, I have loved a pretty girl. Seen a couple places that I’d never thought I’d see.”
Ugh, it’s so darn cute.
For a piece of humble pie and the realization you should tip a lot more. I heard an interview in which Ben said this was one of his favorites. I concur.
Because Ben Rector brought his fans to Six Flags instead of making a regular music video for this song and even though roller coasters are torture chambers the big swings are the best and that’s very cool.
The beat drops like 14 different times in this song and it’s great every time.
If you are like me and want to like John Mayer’s song by the same name but can’t because it feels disloyal to Taylor Swift and Jennifer Aniston.
This one is for anyone doing something scary but worth it. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve blasted this tune after submitting an article to another website, or posting something vulnerable, or trying something new. This song runs in my veins at this point.
Channeling my inner Ben, I hope to pass along the inspiration. You’ve got this!
There are so many more too!
Check out Ben Rector’s 2018, Magic. Old Friends, Drive, Duo, and I Will Always Be Yours were released first as singles, but the rest are just as amazing and will MELT YOUR FACE.
And in 2022 he dropped The Joy of Music and my favorite is definitely Living My Best Life. But Sundays (featuring Snoop Dogg, yup!) and Heroes have to make the top list too.
After writing this one I feel like I have a promising future as a music critic. Maybe just on the side? Maybe stick to my day job? Fine. But still, go listen to Ben Rector.