Dierks Bentley: Songs That Should’ve Been Singles

This month, we take a closer listen to Dierks Bentley's back catalogue and find eight gems that warrant airplay.

Written by Annie Reuter
Dierks Bentley: Songs That Should’ve Been Singles
Photo courtesy Dierks Bentley

The process of choosing a single for radio is often as arduous a task as writing the song. Each month, Sounds Like Nashville will feature a different artist and explore songs from his or her catalogue that we wish made it to radio. Make no mistake, this is no critique of the artist or label, it’s simply a list of songs we love so much that we think deserve to be in the spotlight. This month, we take a closer listen to Dierks Bentley’s back catalogue and find eight gems that warrant airplay.

“Wish It Would Break”

Dierks Bentley laments of love lost on this gem from his 2003 major label debut. “Wish It Would Break” is a heartfelt song that has him unsuccessfully trying to get over an ex. An old picture frame with a photo of the two in it, a car radio full of their songs being played and a heart that just won’t move on help get the point across. All the while, Bentley’s emotive vocals stress the struggle he feels of being unable to move on. “You’re wrapped around me, your memories bound me like a chain. I wish it would break,” he sings.

“Soon As You Can”

Two albums later, Bentley’s love life takes a turn. Now a happily married man, on “Soon As You Can” off 2006’s Long Trip Alone he sings of finding that special someone. “When a man wants to be with a woman / There ain’t no way of getting their too fast / When you know who you want to spend the rest of your life with / You wanna start the rest of your life as soon as you can,” he sings on the chorus. Alongside soaring pedal steel and Bentley’s hopeful vocals, “Soon As You Can” is a feel-good ballad that has the listener rooting for the singer to make it to his girl’s home swiftly and safely.

“Life On the Run”

This fast paced, bass heavy track is perfect in the live setting and features Bentley portraying a man who lives his life dangerously. The song kicks off with the sound of a car engine racing the open road and “Life On the Run” only continues to pick up speed with gritty guitar parts and Bentley singing of trying to live inconspicuously. Perhaps a farfetched dream to run from the law, Bentley’s alter ego is showcased on the fun track.

“Diamonds Make Babies”

This clever track is sung from the perspective of a man advising his pal who is about to propose to his girl that the ring he’s holding is not just a pretty piece of jewelry. What is it, then? A baby making trap! The twangy song — written by Chris Stapleton, Jim Beavers and Lee Thomas Miller — serves as a comical warning: “That thing is more than just a simple stone / It’s got some crazy powers all its own / Something will happen when she slips it on, they never tell you at the jewelry store / Diamonds make babies,” Bentley sings. With three kids of his own, Bentley surely knows this from firsthand experience.

“Better Believer”

One of Bentley’s more introspective songs, “Better Believer” has the singer looking within himself and at his life in disbelief. Feeling slightly guilty for the many blessings he’s been bestowed he reasons, “I should be doing so much more . . . this life of mine should belong to a better believer.” Co-written with Rivers Rutherford, it’s one of Bentley’s more honest songs and a song that reminds us all to count our blessings and not just look above when things are going badly.

“Here On Earth”

“Here On Earth” follows where “Better Believer” left off but this time Bentley is questioning the death of his father. “There’s no making sense of the senseless while this pain is killing me,” he laments. Bentley is struggling being strong and in having faith knowing his father is gone from this earth. It’s a song many can relate to after losing a loved one, and one that should be heard on the radio reminding us all that we’re not alone in our suffering.


Do you often stare at your phone wishing your first love would give you a call? It turns out Bentley does, too. On “Five” the singer reminisces about romantic evenings spent swinging on the porch with a former flame. Now on the West Coast, his ex is living a new life but he can’t seem to get her off his mind. Lucky for him, she is thinking about him too. Warning: this sweet song might have you picking up the phone.

“Damn These Dreams”

Bentley shows his sentimental side on “Damn These Dreams.” Alone on acoustic guitar at the track’s start, the song shares insight into a musician’s life on the road and away from his family. “It’s hard to look true love in the eye and leave,” Bentley admits. The song is a journey through his life — the first time he heard Hank Williams on the radio, listening to his own song played through the airwaves and later falling in love and having children of his own. “Damn These Dreams” is as vulnerable a song as they come, but it is this storytelling that is the heart of country music. Bentley shares his life story with the listener and makes them feel something. After all, isn’t that what we should be hearing on the radio?

Stream our Songs That Should Have Been Singles playlist below. Subscribe HERE for updates.