On This Day: Brooks & Dunn Score Chart-Topper With ‘Red Dirt Road’ in 2003

by Shelby Scott

One of country music’s most famous duos, Brooks & Dunn, saw their hit song, “Red Dirt Road,” top charts on this day in 2003, featuring as the title track to their eighth album, Red Dirt Road. The song later become the duo’s 18th no. 1 on Billboard.

The album Red Dirt Road sponsored two more singles, “You Can’t Take the Honky Tonk Out of the Girl” and “That’s What She Gets for Loving Me.” The two reached no. 3 and no. 6, respectively. Additionally, the song peaked at no. 25 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Overall, the pair shares 11 studio albums and five compilation albums. Amazingly, they released 50 singles and of those, 20 saw no. 1 on the Hot Country Songs chart.

The artists, alongside other famous 90s icons, helped pave the road and define the sound of country music during that era. Brooks & Dunn’s music influences from honkytonk, mainstream country, and rock. They are also noteworthy for both their unique talents in singing, performing and overall personas.

Where Did They Come From and How Did They Start?

In addition to being one of country music’s most famous duos, they are also well-known as solo artists and entertainers. Kix Brooks started out writing songs for earlier famous artists such as the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Highway 101.

Brooks partnered with Ronnie Dunn in 1990 who, according to the former’s website, are the “highest selling duo in the history of country music.” It further stated that they’ve sold more than 30 million records and won over 75 major industry awards, in addition to the 20 no. 1 hits they collaborated on together.

Ronnie Dunn was raised in Oklahoma and performed in his father’s band before later going on to win the Marlboro Talent Search, according to IMDb. This led him to score a recording session in Nashville where he got his recording contract. Following is when he joined partner Kix Brooks.

Brooks and Dunn split for a brief period in 2009, after 20 years together. Brooks took over hosting the long-running radio show, American Country Countdown. The country music star still hosts the show 15 years later. Dunn, following the split, then began a solo career, releasing his self-titled debut album featuring single, “Bleed Red.”

The pair reunited in 2015 during a Las Vegas residency with country legend Reba McEntire. Following the release of Dunn’s 2016 album Tattooed Heart, Brooks appeared on single “Damn Drunk.” The single became the first new Brooks & Dunn song since “Honky Tonk Stomp” in 2009.

Brooks & Dunn Are Touring This Summer With Icon Travis Tritt

While it’s been a long-time coming, and at certain points didn’t even seem likely, the famous Brooks & Dunn duo plan to join the iconic Travis Tritt on tour this year. This is huge because it’s the first time in 10 years that the duo will be touring together. The “Reboot” tour is set to kick off this September 2, 2021.

The duo is set to start in the Mid-West before moving eastward and heading south toward Texas. Big cities included on the tour include Cincinnati, Chicago, and Philadelphia.

In addition to Travis Tritt, the duo will also be joined by rising artist Elvie Shane, well-known for his new song, “My Boy.”