What would you consider the all-time greatest love song duets? Billboard critics set out to get them with a fine-tooth comb (to borrow a lyric from one of the songs), coming up with 25 tracks across all genres.
For “Islands in the Stream,” they noted its chart-topping dominance on the country chart, adult contemporary chart, and Hot 100: “The crossover success is no surprise. Everyone could imagine Kenny and Dolly rowing off into the sunset together.”
For the other country classic, they chose “Jackson” by Johnny Cash and June Carter. They interpret the song this way: “While Cash spends much of ’Jackson’ singing about how he’s heading to the titular city to carouse with other women, the whole thing feels like playful fantasizing. Carter laughs off his threats, certain the ladies of Jackson will play him for a fool.”
The expansive list ranges from “Shallow” (from A Star Is Born) to “You’re the One That I Want” (from Grease), with some Motown classics, R&B hits, and playful pop classics in the mix. It’s all enough to make you hotter than a pepper sprout.