Compiling a Top 10 list of the year's best songs for Folk Alley is difficult, because the stream offers listeners the chance to wear so many different hats. Overall, the choices were made based on quality of composition, originality, arrangement, performance, use of poetic device and production. But each hour of our stream is built around more than just the typical folksinger. We also include Americana, bluegrass, Celtic, Cajun, blues and world music, as well as pure instrumentalists. So, while care was taken to create an all-encompassing list, only so much can fit into a mere 10 songs. With that in mind, songwriters still prevailed — probably because there are so many of them.
Click here for more entries in our Best Music of 2009 series.