Dierks Bentley has built a solid career on writing and recording great songs. With hits ranging from the introspective “Every Mile A Memory,” to the sultry “Come A Little Closer,” to the rambunctious “Drunk On A Plane,” the superstar has one of the most diverse catalogs in modern country music. He even tipped his hat to his bluegrass influences with “Up On The Ridge” in 2010.
Racking in nominations from the ACMs, CMAs, Billboard Music Awards, and GRAMMYs, Bentley’s music has been celebrated time and time again. Always finding a way to set himself apart, Bentley has proven to be one of the genre’s most consistent artists for over 16 years.
Here, we take a look back at Dierks Bentley‘s catalog to rank his 10 best songs.
10. “Lot of Leavin’ Left to Do”
Written by Dierks Bentley, Deric Ruttan and Brett Beavers from Modern Day Drifter (2005)
This upbeat number was released long before Bentley was a married father of three. Serving as a warning to his potential love interests, “Lot of Leavin’ Left to Do” lists the reasons why falling in love with the narrator is a bad idea. It’s a fun track that is easy to sing along with.
9. “Up on the Ridge”
Written by Dierks Bentley and Angelo Petraglia from Up on the Ridge (2010)
The lead single and title track off Bentley’s 2010 bluegrass album, “Up on the Ridge” finds the narrator encouraging his girl to ditch the city for a night in the country. While it may not have been Bentley’s biggest chart success (it peaked at No. 21), it proved that Bentley’s talents could stretch beyond mainstream country.
Written by Dierks Bentley, Dan Wilson and Brett Beavers from Home (2012)
Country music fans love a good patriotic anthem and Bentley gave them just that with “Home.” Bringing a sense of unity to the listener, the song acknowledges the hardships we face as a nation and leaves fans with a glimmer of hope that better days are on the horizon.
7. “Burning Man” feat. Brothers Osborne
Written by Bobby Pinson and Luke Dick from The Mountain (2018)
With its mix of country, rock and bluegrass “Burning Man,” Bentley’s collaboration with award-winning duo Brothers Osborne, embodies everything that fans have grown to love about the singer’s music. Bentley didn’t have a hand in writing the toe-tapping tune, but he connected with its message immediately. When he asked Brothers Osborne to join him in the studio, they didn’t hesitate to say yes, responding to the singer’s text message within two minutes.
6. “Woman, Amen”
Written by Dierks Bentley, Josh Kear and Ross Copperman from The Mountain (2018)
Inspired by the strong relationships the co-writers have with their wives, “Woman, Amen” was the first single from Bentley’s thought-provoking album, The Mountain. Bentley was open about his wife being a major influence for the song. “I feel more grateful for her every year that goes along,” he told The Boot. “I get so caught up in the music, and she helps steer me through all the work and being out on the road, and just helping me be the man that I am.”
5. “I Hold On”
Written by Dierks Bentley and Brett James from Riser (2014)
A tribute to his late father, Leon, “I Hold On,” is a song that is very personal to the country superstar. He wrote it while visiting his home state of Arizona after his father’s death. The idea for the song came to him while reminiscing about all the good times with his dad, including the road trip they took from Phoenix to Nashville when he was just 19 years old. The fact that he still drives the pickup truck they drove to town proves just how autobiographical this track is.
4. “Different For Girls” feat. Elle King
Written by Shane McAnally and J. T. Harding from Black (2016)
“Different For Girls” highlights the contrasting ways men and women deal with heartache. The song drew praise from fans and critics alike and went on to win the Vocal Event of the Year trophy at the 2016 CMA Awards.
3. “Come a Little Closer”
Written by Dierks Bentley and Brett Beavers from Modern Day Drifter (2005)
Fans first saw Bentley’s sultry side in 2005 with the release of “Come a Little Closer.” The sexy lyrics and even sexier music video made this track an instant favorite among Bentley’s growing fan base.
2. “Drunk on a Plane”
Written by Dierks Bentley Josh Kear and Chris Tompkins from Riser (2014)
“Drunk on a Plane” is an interesting song due to its combination of lighthearted and melancholy lyrics. The hilarious music video, featuring Bentley as himself and as the pilot, truly brought the song to life. “Drunk on a Plane” took Bentley’s career to new heights and will likely be a staple in his live show for years to come.
1. “What Was I Thinkin’”
Written by Dierks Bentley Brett Beavers, and Deric Ruttan from Dierks Bentley (2003)
It’s rare to find an artist who hits the scene with a chart-topping debut single. Bentley is one of the few to accomplish this feat. “What Was I Thinkin’” was an instant hit and has since become the Arizona native’s signature song. The infectious track inspired many of Bentley’s female fans to wear white tank tops to his concerts.