Big & Rich’s 2004 hit was a game-changer, even if opinions on the actual song were mixed. “Save a Horse (Ride a Cowboy)” was, and still is, a polarizing song, but you can’t deny the impact and lasting legacy.

"Save a Horse" is everywhere, much like it was over a decade ago. During an interview with Taste of Country, the duo talked about when they knew they had something huge. Big Kenny says that even though everyone involved with the Muzik Mafia loved the song, but they were still very young at the time.

“And then the first time we got on a big stage, when Tim McGraw took us out on tour, 2004, the way people reacted to it it was like we had a hit already,” he says. “Everyone just knew it!”

The energy in any room Big & Rich entered could have powered a small city. They were the “it” act in country music, with more buzz than any artist has enjoyed in the 2000s.

About this list: Taste of Country’s Top Country Songs of the Century were decided by a panel of country music experts and fans using sales and chart data, a song’s social and musical impact and lyrical integrity. Select artists were also surveyed. You’ll hear from several throughout the list.

Big & Rich and Cowboy Troy Recall the Power of "Save a Horse"