When you know, you know.

It's easy to see why Jordan Davis received his first-ever CMA Awards nomination with his Luke Bryan collab, "Buy Dirt." One listen and you're instantly hooked on its nostalgia, simplicity and overall message.

"'Cause the truth about it is / It all goes by real quick / You can't buy happiness / But you can buy dirt," he sings.

It's a reminder that life is short and we should be focusing on the things that matter — the things that make life rich. The song touches on love, family and faith and is authentic and relatable.

"This has been a good one, this is a special one," Davis told Taste of Country ahead of this year's CMA Awards. He insists that he knew the song was going to be good even before he or Bryan got into the studio.

"I would have been surprised if it would have been a dud. You know what I'm saying?" he admits.

In addition to the content, Davis notes that being in the writing room with Josh Jenkins, Matt Jenkins and his brother, Jacob Davis, was also a treasured experience. Upon completing the song, it didn't take long before one of them expressed their shared feelings of accomplishment.

"It was either Matt or Josh that said, 'You know what, I don't care what this song does, this is a song that I'm probably most proud of I've ever been a part of,'" Davis reveals. He was quick to second that opinion.

Davis and Bryan have kept in touch since releasing the song, which went on to be certified Gold. In fact, the day that it did, Bryan to congratulate his buddy and say thank you for the opportunity.

"Luke's been a role model to me and it's just crazy to think that I've got a song out with him," Davis acknowledges.

"Buy Dirt" was nominated for Musical Event of the Year at the 2021 CMA Awards. The award ultimately went to Kelsea Ballerini for her song "Half of My Hometown" featuring Kenny Chesney.

Top Country Songs of 2021, Ranked

You'll find much more than just the Top 10 Country Songs of 2021 on this list. Enjoy the 21 best country songs of the year, based on Taste of Country staff and country music fan opinion, plus commercial data (sales, streaming, airplay).

To be considered, the song must have been released in 2021 or have actively charted for a portion of the year (see "Wine, Beer, Whiskey"). New artists including Lainey Wilson, Larry Fleet and Morgan Wade crack the top songs list, while hitmakers including Thomas Rhett, Jason Aldean and Luke Combs make the Top 10.

Let us know your favorite song of 2021 on Twitter, or email us at staff@tasteofcountry.com.

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