Clint Black was already a fast-rising star in country music when he made his debut on the Grand Ole Opry on April 22, 1989, and by the end of the year he would be one of the breakout stars of the decade.

Black had already released his first single, "A Better Man," from his landmark debut album Killin' Time, in February of 1989, so he was not a completely unknown face to country fans when he hit the hallowed stage of the country music institution for his inaugural appearance, performing the now-classic song with the Opry band.

Black turned to social media in 2020 to share some archival footage of that night:

"A Better Man" would go on to reach No. 1 on Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart in June, and Black followed that success with "Killin' Time," "Nobody's Home" and "Walkin' Away," all of which reached the top spot, while "Nothing's News" hit No. 3. Killin' Time launched Black as one of the biggest new stars in country music, and he was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry just two years after his debut, in 1991.

Black still performs regularly at the Opry House in Nashville, and he still gets excited every time from “walking out into the halls and getting your picture taken and people wanting autographs," he says (quote via the Boot). "You see all the people that you know, and you also see fans. It’s that crazy feeling you get — there’s excitement backstage at the Opry.”

See the Most Played Country Song from the Year You Were Born

Who had the most played country song during the year you were born? This list is a fascinating time capsule of prevalent trends from every decade in American history. Scroll through to find your birth year and then click to listen. Some of these songs have been lost through the years, many of them for good reason!

Men named Hank dominated early before stars like Freddie Hart, Ronnie Milsap, Willie Nelson Clint Black took over to close the 1980s. More recently it's been Tim Mcgraw, Rodney Atkins, Kane Brown and Morgan Wallen. Did the most-played country song from the year you were born become a favorite of yours later? All info comes from Billboard's country airplay charts.

Gallery Credit: Billy Dukes

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