This list of the best country funeral songs is part of our series on songs for funerals, memorials, and life celebration services. Read the main article here. In that article you will find a list of the top 100 funeral songs, music by genre, and much more.
Music lovers of virtually any age and every walk of life adore country music. From Willie Nelson to Carrie Underwood, these artists hold a special place in our hearts. Country songs can depict every feeling out there, from happy and sad, to in love and silly, and back again.
Today, we’re placing a spotlight on those songs that make saying goodbye to a loved one just a little easier.
Below we have compiled a list of the 45 best country songs. These songs are sure to uplift and inspire you as you grieve your loss and prepare for the funeral.
Each song featured on our list is appropriate for any funeral, with beautiful melody and wholesome lyrics. You can use these songs for a video montage, to play during a time of reflection and meditation, or during the reception as background music.
Take your time and listen to each song on this list. We are certain that you’ll find the one for your loved one’s service.
Whether you’re honoring a parent, grandparent, other relative, friend or spouse, we hope that you find the perfect country song below to honor their legacy. It is our prayer that, in the very least, you find comfort listening to these tracks.
Most Beloved Country Funeral Songs
Here is our list of the 20 best country music funeral songs, in alphabetical order. Further below you’ll find more tunes for different types of services and by different popular country artists.
- Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground by Willie Nelson (1981)
- Believe by Brooks and Dunn (2003)
- Broken Halos by Chris Stapleton (2017)
- Drink a Beer by Luke Bryan (2013)
- Go Rest High On That Mountain by Vince Gill (1995)
- God’s Will by Martina McBride (2004)
- How Can I Help You Say Goodbye by Patty Loveless (1993)
- How Do I Live Without You by LeeAnn Rimes (1997)
- How Great Thou Art by Carrie Underwood (2008)
- If I Had Only Known by Reba McEntire (1991)
- I’m Already There by Lonestar (2001)
- I’m Gonna Miss You by Dolly Parton (2003)
- My Angel by Kellie Pickler (2006)
- One More Day by Diamond Rio (2000)
- Remember When by Alan Jackson (2003)
- The Old Rugged Cross by Gaither Vocal Band (1993)
- There You’ll Be by Faith Hill (2001)
- When I Get Where I’m Going by Brad Paisley feat. Dolly Parton (2005)
- When I’m Gone by Joey + Rory (2012)
- You Should Be Here by Cole Swindell
Please see below for descriptions of each of the songs listed above, as well as video/audio clips and options for downloading.
1. Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground by Willie Nelson (1981)
Willie Nelson wrote Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground in 1981. It was first featured in the film “Honeysuckle Rose”, and in the years since has risen in popularity.
This song may be your best choice if your loved had been ill or suffering for a time before they passed away. Willie’s unmistakable vocals add a soft, comforting touch to the lyrics that few other artists could match.
2. Believe by Brooks and Dunn (2003)
This country song is deeply rooted in Christian thought. In Believe, country music duo Brooks and Dunn remind us that as believers, death is only goodbye for now.
Was the person you are preparing to say goodbye to an old friend? Do memories of them bring back nostalgic thoughts of simpler days, growing up in the country?
Then take a listen to Believe; no matter who your friend was, if they were a fan of country music then this song may be the perfect pick for their funeral.
3. Broken Halos by Chris Stapleton (2017)
This country song is fairly upbeat, but Chris Stapleton’s smoky vocals provide it the perfect degree of comfort.
With a pleasant marriage of guitar and percussion, Broken Halos is a reminder that the people we love are not ours to keep, but God’s to take when He chooses.
4. Drink a Beer by Luke Bryan (2013)
Christ Stapleton actually wrote this song, too, along with Jim Beavers. Performed by Luke Bryan on his 2013 album Crash My Party, Drink a Beer is about trusting God even when we don’t understand why He would take our loved one from us.
It’s a song about remembering the good times and then letting go…even when that’s the hardest thing to do.
Related: 10 Beautiful Cowboy Urns for Ashes
5. Go Rest High On That Mountain by Vince Gill (1995)
Country singer Vince Gill released this song in 1995 on his album When Love Finds You. Its release followed the deaths of fellow musician Keith Whitley, and also Vince’s own brother.
With undertones reminiscent of an old hymn, Go Rest High On That Mountain has since become a contemporary classic, making it a popular song choice for funerals.
Patty Loveless and Ricky Skaggs lend their vocals to the background of this beloved track.
6. God’s Will by Martina McBride (2004)
In 2003 Martina McBride released God’s Will as a track on her self-titled studio album. This is one of the saddest songs to make it to our list of best country funeral songs.
It’s about a little boy who chooses to see the positive in everything, even though he’s disabled.
Maybe your loved one was always looking on the bright side of life, even though it wasn’t always easy. Consider this tune to honor that inspirational legacy at their funeral.
7. How Can I Help You Say Goodbye by Patty Loveless (1993)
It’s so hard to find the right words to say goodbye to someone who meant the world to us. But where words fail, music speaks.
Was the person you now miss the most, always the one to lend you a caring ear or helpful hand? Would this person bend over backwards to help get you through a tough time in life?
If you’re looking for country funeral songs saying goodbye, then consider this timeless song from country artist Patty Loveless to be played at their life celebration.
8. How Do I Live Without You by LeeAnn Rimes (1997)
How Do I Live Without You is not the first song that comes to mind when you think of country funeral music. But the lyrics do make it appropriate, especially if you have lost a significant other.
Featured on LeeAnn Rimes’ album You Light Up My Life: Inspirational Songs, this track is also performed by country singer Trisha Yearwood.
9. How Great Thou Art by Carrie Underwood (2008)
“American Idol” alumni Carrie Underwood recorded this classic hymn in 2008 for the album How Great Thou Art: Gospel Favorites from the Grand Ole Opry.
Originally penned by Carl Boberg in 1885, this worshipful song reminds us that even in times of sorrow, there is still so much joy to be found in life.
10. If I Had Only Known by Reba McEntire (1991)
In March of 1991, Reba McEntire and her band played a concert in San Diego, after which the band flew out to their next concert in Ft Wayne, Indiana. McEntire and a few others in the entourage were to stay the night in San Diego and follow the next morning.
But in the early hours of the morning, McEntire’s husband and manager Narvel Blackstock came back with tragic news: The band’s airplane had struck a rock on Otay Mountain, and everyone on board died in the crash.
McEntire dedicated her next album to memory of the departed, which included the song If I Had Only Known. This song is about the last moments shared with someone special, and the regrets that come with not knowing when the last time you hear their voice might be.
A mournful song to commemorate the treasured memories after a tragic loss, this 1991 country ballad has been a staple at funeral services for more than thirty years.
11. I’m Already There by Lonestar (2001)
Country band Lonestar wrote and recorded I’m Already There in 2001 as a track on their album by the same name.
While not specifically about losing someone to death, this song describes someone who is far away and who we miss very much.
The comforting lyrics remind us that all we have to do is look around, and we’ll be reminded of their love for us.
12. I’m Gonna Miss You by Dolly Parton (2003)
This tune by Dolly Parton honors a loved one who has served our country and who has now passed away. Consider playing I’m Gonna Miss You at your loved one’s service if they served in the military, or even if they were a first responder.
I’m Gonna Miss You is featured on Dolly’s 2003 album For God and Country.
13. My Angel by Kellie Pickler (2006)
Another “American Idol” alumni, Kellie Pickler pays homage to the memory of her late grandmother with My Angel.
She sings that her grandma was like a mother to her, and even like a best friend. This song may be a good choice for your grandmother’s funeral if the two of you were especially close.
Related: 21 Best Funeral Songs for Grandma
14. One More Day by Diamond Rio (2000)
Country music band Diamond Rio released One More Day in 2000 and the song has been beloved ever since. Oh, to have just one more day with a dearly departed loved one… the band’s harmonious vocals do a wonderful job at describing that overwhelming desire.
One More Day found further popularity following the tragic death of NASCAR’s Dale Earnhardt, and again following the events of September 11th, 2001.
15. Remember When by Alan Jackson (2003)
Alan Jackson’s signature croon does Remember When a justice that no other singer could rightfully do. This song one of his most popular releases to date, if not the most popular.
Remember When is not about the death of a loved one, but it does follow the life of a couple, from youth to old age. For this reason it may be the perfect country funeral song to play at the funeral of a spouse.
16. The Old Rugged Cross by Gaither Vocal Band (1993)
George Bennard wrote The Old Rugged Cross in 1912, and it has since become one of the most famous Christian hymns. Gaither Vocal Band covered it in 1993, providing a harmonious, powerful rendition that yet remains true to the song’s message.
Over the decades, countless funerals have featured The Old Rugged Cross for its simple, comforting message of salvation.
17. There You’ll Be by Faith Hill (2001)
This beautiful country song by Faith Hill was featured in the 2001 movie “Pearl Harbor.” There You’ll Be is not just about the sadness one feels at the loss of a loved one who is no longer with us.
The song also illustrates the joy one experiences in being together again with that loved one, even if that joy is only found in dreams.
18. When I Get Where I’m Going by Braid Paisley feat. Dolly Parton (2005)
Dolly Parton joins Brad Paisley in singing When I Get Where I’m Going, an award-winning track from Paisley’s album Time Well Wasted.
Played at many a funeral since its release in 2005, this song gently reminds mourners that there will be a beautiful reunion one day in heaven.
This track is an especially popular choice for the funerals of fathers and grandfathers.
19. When I’m Gone by Joey + Rory (2012)
Husband-and-wife country duo Joey + Rory recorded When I’m Gone in 2012, and in it sung about the deep sadness that is felt at the loss of a beloved spouse.
Sadly, just four years after the release of When I’m Gone, Joey Feek passed away from cancer.
20. You Should Be Here by Cole Swindell
Cole Swindell’s You Should Be Here is a tribute to his father, who passed away suddenly while Cole was on tour following the debut of his first album.
The aching yet upbeat ballad conveys a profound sense of longing during many of the everyday moments of life. Cole describes all the moments he wishes he could share with his father, moments that are special because of how “normal” they are.
A beautiful way to honor that person who you always wish was by your side during the great memories in life.
Country Songs for a Memorial Service
Memorial services tend to be a little less formal than funerals, and more conducive to popular music (read about the difference between funerals, memorials, and life celebrations).
Lee Ann Womack’s I Hope You Dance is a popular tune not only in the country music genre, but in the pop scene as well.
Similar to LeeAnn Rimes’ How Do I Live Without You, you may not at first have thought of this song as one for a memorial. The lyrics prove otherwise.
This song reminds us that our loved one would have wanted us to live our best life, even without them. It’s the perfect message for a memorial service.
Here are a few more favorite memorial songs for country music fans:
- He Didn’t Have to Be by Brad Paisley (1999)
- How Do I Live by LeeAnn Rimes (1997)
- I Will Always Love You by Dolly Parton (1974)
- If Heaven Wasn’t So Far Away by Justin Moore (2011)
- Over You by Miranda Lambert (2012)
- Sissy’s Song by Alan Jackson (1990)
- The Dance by Garth Brooks (1989)
- Who You’d Be Today by Kenny Chesney (2005)
Country Songs for a Celebration of Life Service
Country band Rascal Flatts rose to world-wide fame in 2004 with their cover of Bless the Broken Road. Featured on their album Feels Like Today, this song describes how God unexpectedly places special people in our lives. He uses them to bless our own lives, whether or not we at first realize what He’s doing.
Pick this song if the person you are now grieving came into your life unexpectedly, but there’s no doubt Who brought you together. It’s the perfect theme for a celebration of life.
More “celebration of life” songs:
- A Picture of Me (Without You) by George Jones (1972)
- Daddy’s Hands by Holly Dunn (1986)
- Holes in the Floor of Heaven by Steve Wariner (1998)
- If Heaven by Andy Griggs (2004)
- In The Garden by Alan Jackson (2006)
- Love, Me by Collin Raye (1991)
- Meet Me In Heaven by Johnny Cash (1996)
- Please Remember Me by Tim McGraw (1999)
Traditional Country Songs for Funerals
Church circles around the globe still sing I’ll Fly Away, an old-time gospel hymn written in 1929. It is thought to be the most-recorded hymn of all time (though Amazing Grace may be in the running for that title).
Originally written by Albert Brumley, it was covered by country singer Hank Williams and has been played at countless funerals ever since.
This song is a joyful one, illustrating the beauty of that glorious day when God calls us home. Perhaps the most classically traditional of our country funeral songs.
More traditional funeral songs in the country music style:
- Amazing Grace by Alan Jackson (2013)
- Angels Among Us by Alabama (1993)
- He Stopped Loving Her Today by George Jones (1980)
- If Tomorrow Never Comes by Garth Brooks (1989)
- I’ll Hold You In My Heart by Eddy Arnold (1949)
- Just A Closer Walk With Thee by Willie Nelson & Patsy Cline (1980)
- The Wings That Fly Us Home by John Denver (1976)
- Will the Circle Be Unbroken by The Carter Family (1935)
Country Songs by Artist
Did your loved one have a favorite country music artist? Chances are it will be one of the beloved singers listed below.
We’ve selected the top funeral songs from each of these artists to help you plan your loved one’s service. Most tunes have themes of loss and memories and grief, but some simply celebrate the life and love you shared together.
Alan Jackson Funeral Songs
- Amazing Grace
- Blessed Assurance
- Drive (For Daddy Gene)
- Gone Crazy
- I’ll Fly Away
- I Want to Stroll Over Heaven with You
- Look at Me
- Oh, How I Love Jesus
- The Old Rugged Cross
- Remember When
- Sissy’s Song
- When We All Get to Heaven
- Where Her Heart Has Always Been
Dolly Parton Funeral Songs
- Comin’ For To Carry Me Home
- How Great Thou Art
- I’m Gonna Miss You
- I Will Always Love You
- Let Her Fly
- The Lord Is My Shepherd
- Precious Memories
- Shine On
- When I Get to Where I’m Going (w/ Brad Paisley)
- Wings of a Dove
- You Are
Garth Brooks Funeral Songs
- The Dance
- If Tomorrow Never Comes
- The River
- What I’m Thankful For (The Thanksgiving Song) (w/ Trisha Yearwood)
George Jones Funeral Songs
- He Stopped Loving Her Today
- I’ll Follow You Up to Our Cloud
- I Turn to You
- My Lord Has Called Me
- A Picture Of Me (Without You)
- Precious Memories (w/ Patti Page)
- She Loved a Lot in Her Time
- Softly and Tenderly
- Swing Low, Sweet Chariot
- Walk Through This World with Me
- We’ll Understand It (Farther Along)
- What a Friend We Have in Jesus
- Where We’ll Never Grow Old
- You Put Living Back in Life
Kenny Chesney Funeral Songs
- Don’t Blink
- The Good Stuff
- Grandpa Told Me So
- How Forever Feels
- When the Sun Goes Down
- Who You’d Be Today
Patsy Cline Funeral Songs
- Just a Closer Walk with Thee (w/ Willie Nelson)
- Life’s Railway to Heaven
- San Antionio Rose
- Walkin’ After Midnight
Randy Travis Funeral Songs
- Amazing Grace
- Blessed Assurance
- Forever Together
- Forever and Ever
- He Walked on Water
- How Great Thou Art
- I Am Going
- I’ll Fly Away
- In the Garden
- Precious Memories
- The Unclouded Day
Rascal Flatts Funeral Songs
- Bless the Broken Road
- Here Comes Goodbye
- Life Is a Highway
- My Wish
- What Hurts the Most
Willie Nelson Funeral Songs
- Always on My Mind
- Angel Flying to Close to the Ground
- Family Bible
- Funny How Time Slips Away
- Georgia on My Mind
- Just a Closer Walk with Thee (w/ Patsy Cline)
- Remember Me
- Softly and Tenderly
- Whispering Hope
- Will the Circle Be Unbroken
- Yesterday’s Wine
This concludes our list of classic country funeral songs. Thank you for reading, and hopefully you found some tunes from this list to play at the funeral service of your loved one.
At the very least, we hope these songs brought you a bit of comfort as you prepare to say goodbye to your loved one.
If you are looking for further inspiration, you can always check out our master list of funeral songs here. It spans genres and eras, making it a wonderful resource.
Aubrey is a lifelong writer who has served in the funeral industry since 2016. After graduating from Dallas Institute of Funeral Service, she knew she wanted to continue to serve families through her writing, but didn’t know how.
Soon after, Aubrey experienced a “lightbulb” moment and started her eulogy writing business, Eulogies by Aubrey, in 2019.
Aubrey has written professionally since 2012, covering not only funeral-related topics and gift trends, but also for TV guide listings, as well as legal topics. She began writing for US Urns Online in 2019.
Aubrey’s work has been featured in Huffpost, Coming of Age Magazine, and 1800Flowers.com. She holds certifications in Cremation Arrangement (ICCFA) and Burial at Sea (NEBAS), and as of 2023, is a trained and certified birth and bereavement doula (SBD). Aubrey is currently studying toward her degree in Business Administration.