Tim McGraw Reveals What Makes a Great Song

by Jacklyn Krol
Greg Doherty, Getty Images

With hit after hit, it’s no secret that Tim McGraw knows how to choose what will become a chart-topper.

The “Shotgun Rider” singer’s secret to success boils down to his fan’s feelings. Country music is all about storytelling and McGraw’s overall goal is to remind everyone of that.

“Everybody find emotions in different ways,” he began. “I mean, there are a lot of great artists who had great lives growin’ up and they can make you feel anything you wanna feel. They’re fantastic.”

However, for Tim McGraw, it goes deeper and the emotions translate between him and his listeners. In a live setting, it’s even more intimate.

“For me, it all comes from, I guess, a piece of my soul. Every time I sing a song I feel like I’m tearing out a piece of my soul, and I want it to feel that way.”

McGraw added that he doesn’t try to over-sing or oversell or, he just wants to convey his feelings. He only picks or co-writes songs that he can relate to in some way.

“I’ll tell you the most important thing I’ve learned through loving music and listening to the radio a lot is. You can tell somebody how you feel, but when you can tell somebody how they feel, and they didn’t know they felt that way until they heard it in a song or they felt it, I think that’s when there’s something really special.  And I’ve been fortunate enough that I’ve had some really great songs in my career that have allowed me to find that emotional well.”

Tim McGraw on Keeping Family First

Tim McGraw and Faith Hill are one of the most iconic couples in country music. They have three daughters and managed to always keep their family as their top priority.

“Our careers were really well established when we got married,” he began. “Our careers were up and running really hard. So, we made a conscious decision when we got married that no matter what, if we were gonna start a family, that that was gonna be our first priority.”

He said that everything else would find its place in their lives “for better or worse.”

This included their music careers. While music is an integral part of their lives, their notoriety was on the backburner. Having kids also prevented them from touring while they were growing up.

“That’s always been our core understanding and our core principle, is putting our family first,” he added. “And I think that that’s paid off in our kids and their lives and how we’ve given them as much of a normal life as we can in the situation that they’re in.”