Valentine's Day: Cupid's Arrows Of Love Target (And Hit) Country Music Stars, Too

This appeared in the Nashville Country Music Examiner - February 13, 2009

From the roller-coaster highs that love can bring to the heartbreak devastation it leaves in its wake, country music stars, like the songs they sing, are among the most passion-filled souls around all year, not just on Valentine's Day.

Their romances and breakups, in fact, inspire some of the most heartfelt artistry our culture has known. And country fans, in turn, revel with happiness when a favorite country-music couple stands the test of time, just as they mourn when their favorite artists endure heartache from a love gone wrong

THE PARTING OF the late Tammy Wynette and George Jones, for example, was as heartbreaking for many country fans as any star-crossed Romeo and Juliet saga could ever be.

Still, whether country singers find themselves on the winning or losing end of love, the resulting scenarios often find their way into some of the genre’s best country songs, from Hank Sr.’s “Your Cheatin’ Heart” and the David Allan Coe-penned “Would You Lay with Me,” to Chad Brock’s ”(She Said) Yes” and Brad Paisley’s “Everything to Me.”

As February 14 approaches, then, this writer was inclined to provide a peek at some of country music’s most enduring love matches. By no means is this Cupid-inspired summary inclusive; but rather, a snapshot perusal of some of the country hearts that beat as one both on the concert stage as well as off.

THE ALLURE OF THESE romances, like the love shared by the couples themselves, only shimmers and sparkles even brighter with time. Thus, when it comes to reviewing this Top 14 Country Couples lineup, each dedicated partner gives love (and marriage), especially on Valentine's Day, a good name.

Moreover, while the rundown of some of the genre’s most-enduring matches, from No. 14 to No. 1, is presented in no particular order than one that is based on the couple’s wedding date, it does close with this writer’s favorite new country-music couples to watch.

11. BY ALL ACCOUNTS, it seems Grand Ole Opry star Marty Stuart and his wife, fellow Opry member Connie Smith, have been together a lifetime, because it’s hard to imagine one without the other now. However, it wasn’t until July 8, 1997, that the country-star couple wed on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. FYI: Stuart, at age 12, first met Connie after one of her shows and that day, told him mother he’d one day marry the cute ‘n’ country star. And he kept his word.

By Lisa L. Rollins

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