Throwback Jam: “Dust On the Bottle”

By Emily Wagner

It’s the age old question: would you rather have a career full of mildly successful songs or have one giant hit than transcends decades and generations?

While David Lee Murphy has gone on to write numerous number one songs for Kenny Chesney, Jason Aldean, and others, his career as an artist can be defined by one song, “Dust on the Bottle.”

As with any good song, it almost wasn’t to be.

Murphy and his team were working on recording his debut album Out With a Bang, and they had all the songs ready to go. Some artists say they don’t know where their inspiration comes from, it just hits them like a ton of bricks, which is what happened in David’s kitchen on day two of recording. As he says it, he kept strumming the opening chords and it took about 15 more minutes for the song to come together.

15 minutes.

That’s shorter than an episode of FRIENDS.

The song went on to claim the top spot on the Billboard Hot Country Singles and Tracks, and would be his only #1 song as an artist until 2018 when him and Kenny Chesney reached the top with “Everything’s Gonna Be Alright.” The album itself went on to be the best selling album of any new male artist in 1995, much in thanks to “Dust On The Bottle.”

What makes a song iconic? That it can be played 25 years later and still illicit screams from the crowd or cause you to turn up the dial? A song that is covered by country music stars of today, singing to their fans who weren’t even alive when “Dust On The Bottle” was released? Some songs just have that magic.