Madison Marlow and Taylor Dye, known together as Maddie & Tae, introduced themselves to the country world in a big way: With their 2014 debut single “Girl in a Country Song,” they made it clear that they were bringing a new kind of music (and attitude) to the genre. Song after song since, they have.
The duo co-writes almost all of their songs, which often deal with flipping gender roles and expectations on their head. Several gold- and platinum-certified singles later, they’ve proven that they can do it well.
But which are Maddie & Tae's best songs? Read on for our Top 5 favorites.
"Fly"From 'Start Here' (2015)
Winner of a Radio Disney Music Award for Favorite Country Song, “Fly” is one of the four songs that Maddie & Tae released on their self-titled debut EP, and it also appears on their debut full-length studio album, Start Here. It’s a tender, understated anthem about seeking success and refusing to give up: “Keep on climbing, though the ground might shake / Just keep on reaching, though the limb might break,” Marlow and Dye sing in the chorus of this gold-certified single. “Fly” peaked at No. 9 on the Billboard Country Airplay charts.
"Friends Don't"From the 'One Heart to Another' EP (2019)
The newest Maddie & Tae song on this list, “Friends Don’t” comes from the duo's 2019 EP One Heart to Another. It’s a minor-keyed, sort-of love song, one where the narrator reminds the person listening that “[Friends] don’t cancel other plans / Have conversations with nothing but their eyes / They don’t hear each other’s names / And forget to concentrate.” The big, soulful song highlights the duo’s powerful vocal skills, and the music video that accompanies it was nominated for the CMT Music Award for Duo Video of the Year.
"Shut Up and Fish"From 'Start Here' (2015)
“This is actually my favorite song on the record,” Dye tells Glamour, and we aren’t surprised. The buoyant, upbeat song is a perfect summer anthem for anyone who loves (or loves being loved by someone who loves) fishing. “Shut Up and Fish” is big, soulful and funny all at once: “I could tell he had more than bass on his mind,” Maddie & Tae sing in the first verse. The boys have plenty of songs about fishing, but if you want a great one, take a cue from the title of the record: Start here.
"After the Storm Blows Through"From 'Start Here' (2015)
“After the Storm Blows Through” isn't one of Maddie & Tae’s highest-charting or biggest-selling songs; in fact, it was never even released as a single. But few songs highlight the stripped-down, pure vocal talent that Marlow and Dye possess, and how powerful their voices are when they’re wound together. The duo claims it’s the most vulnerable song on Start Here, and Marlow still has a hard time talking about the true story behind the song. In some ways, “After the Storm Blows Through” is about staying by someone’s side even when things get rough, but in other ways, it’s about how this duo’s vocal and songwriting chops create pure magic.
"Girl in a Country Song"From 'Start Here' (2015)
Maddie & Tae introduced themselves to the world with “Girl in a Country Song,” the debut single from their first EP (and, later, their debut album) -- and they came out swinging. “Girl in a Country Song” is funny, pointed and meaningful all at once, taking aim at the portrayal of women in the “bro-country” sub-genre. The song isn’t vague, and it doesn’t pull any punches: It takes specific aim at songs by Thomas Rhett, Chris Young, Blake Shelton, Tyler Farr and Jason Aldean, but it’s so much fun that it’s (mostly) impossible to take offense. “Girl in a Country Song” is incredibly clever and incredibly fun, and audiences ate it up: It was certified platinum, and made Maddie & Tae the first female duo to top the Billboard Country Airplay chart since 2006.