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by Jim Allen

May 29, 2013

Take This Ring and Shove It: Country Kiss-Off Songs

by Jim Allen  |  May 29, 2013

In country music there are few traditions as tried and true as the breakup song, but there's more than one way for a country singer to bid farewell to a rotten relationship. Probably the most prevalent is the misty-eyed goodbye full of sadness and sobbing, but then there's the other side of the sayonara coin -- the cathartic kiss-off song.

There's an undeniable vicarious appeal in hearing some heartbroken honky-tonker's sorrows sinking to the bottom of a bottle, but visceral, vengeful country kiss-off tunes tend to be a good deal more fun, especially if you can put yourself in the singer's shoes. (And who hasn't at one time or another?) Country music didn't exist yet when U.K. playwright William Congreve famously wrote about there being no "fury like a woman scorned," but listening to Miranda Lambert's "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend" and Carrie Underwood's "Before He Cheats," it sure seems like he had a sneak peek into the 21st century. Of course, guys are allowed into the kiss-off club too -- Travis Tritt's "Here's a Quarter (Call Someone Who Cares)," for example, is a perennial post-breakup classic. How many ways are there to say goodbye with a wicked grin? Hop on in here and find out.

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