Jo Dee Messina songs have a lot of attitude. The singer is known for her feisty empowerment anthems, as well as her high-energy stage presence.
But while many of her biggest hits are uptempo musically, with edgy, aggressive lyrics, Messina also displays a softer, more sensitive side in her music, which has helped her reach a diverse audience across different genres.
All of the different sides of Messina's music are represented in this list of the Top 10 Jo Dee Messina Songs.
"You're Not in Kansas Anymore"From: 'Jo Dee Messina' (1996)
The second single from Messina's debut album contains a clever play on some famous words from The Wizard of Oz. Written by Tim Nichols and Zack Turner, "You're Not in Kansas Anymore" tells the story of a small-town boy who moves to LA, where he finds the girl of his dreams. The song's strong hook and unique perspective took it all the way to No. 7 on Billboard's country chart.
"Stand Beside Me"From: 'I'm Alright' (1998)
The third single from Messina's breakthrough album, I'm Alright, "Stand Beside Me" became the third straight No. 1 single from the project. Written by Stephen Allen Davis, the song describes the narrator's ideal mate: "I want a man that stands beside me / Not in front of or behind me." It spent three weeks at the top of the charts -- the third song from that album to spend multiple weeks at No. 1.
"A Woman's Rant"From: 'Me' (2014)
This single is classic Messina with a new twist. A feisty female empowerment anthem, "A Woman's Rant" shows Messina in a new place in her life, as a harried wife and mother trying to do it all. Messina wrote the song in the middle of the night during a time when her youngest child would not sleep more than two hours at a time.
"I'm Alright"From: 'I'm Alright' (1998)
The title song of Messina's second album also became the second single from the project. Written by Phil Vassar, "I'm Alright" takes a positive approach to life's problems, with the narrator reflecting that despite various challenges, all in all, "I guess I'm doin' alright." That message resonated with country listeners, who made the song Messina's second No. 1 hit.
"My Give a Damn's Busted"From: 'Delicious Surprise' (2005)
Messina bounced back from a dry spell with "My Give a Damn's Busted." The first single from her fourth studio album was written by country star Joe Diffie with Tom Shapiro and Tony Martin. Diffie had previously recorded the tune, but Messina's is the definitive rendition, reaching No. 1 for two weeks in 2005. This feisty track is a must for any list of the Top 10 Jo Dee Messina Songs.
"Lesson in Leavin'"From: 'I'm Alright' (1998)
The fourth single from I'm Alright became the fourth huge hit from the album. A cover of the Dottie West classic "A Lesson in Leavin'," Messina's slightly re-titled version became one of the longest-lasting hits of her career, spending seven weeks at No. 2 in 1999. It fits in perfectly with her attitude-driven songs: "Somebody's gonna give you a lesson in leavin' / Somebody's gonna give you back what you've been giving and I hope that I'm around / To watch them knock you down."
"Bye Bye"From: 'I'm Alright' (1998)
The first single from I'm Alright became a breakthrough hit for Messina. Written by Vassar and Rory Michael Bourke, the song tells the story of a woman who is bidding farewell to a man who's not good for her: "Bye-bye love, I'll catch you later / Got a lead foot down on my accelerator / And the rearview mirror torn off / I ain't never lookin' back, and that's a fact." The song became Messina's first No. 1 hit
"Burn"From: 'Burn' (2000)
"Burn" was originally written and recorded by Australian singer Tina Arena, who had a hit with it in many countries in 1997. Messina covered the song and made it the title track of her 2000 album, and her version became a No. 2 country single in America, helping to propel its parent album to No. 1. Produced by Tim McGraw and Byron Gallimore, the song also reached No. 17 on the adult contemporary charts.
"Heads Carolina, Tails California"From: 'Jo Dee Messina' (1996)
Messina scored a big hit straight out of the gate with "Heads Carolina, Tails California." The first single from her debut album, it tells the story of a woman who proposes that she and her love hit the road, and flip a coin to decide their destination. The uptempo track was a perfect introduction to Messina's fun and feisty persona. Written by Tim Nichols and Mark D. Sanders, the song reached No. 2 in the Billboard country chart.
"Bring on the Rain"From: 'Burn' (2000)
The fourth single from Burn has become one of the definitive hits of Messina's career. A pop-country ballad written by Billy Montana and Helen Darling, "Bring on the Rain" recounts a hard day that the narrator is having, but adds: "Tomorrow's another day / Amd I'm thirsty anyway / So bring on the rain." McGraw co-produced the track and sings backing vocals. The song became Messina's fifth No. 1 hit, and also reached No. 6 on the adult contemporary charts. It was nominated for both a Grammy and an ACM.