Was Rascal Flatts’ Debut Single ‘Prayin’ for Daylight’ a ‘Smash’ or ‘Trash’?

Jay DeMarcus, Joe Don Rooney and Gary LeVox of Rascal Flatts

(L-R) Jay DeMarcus, Joe Don Rooney and Gary LeVox of Rascal Flatts (Christopher Polk/Getty Images for Wonderwall)

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The three members of Rascal Flatts (Jay DeMarcus, Joe Don Rooney, Gary LeVox) were coming back from their very first radio tour as a band when they heard a familiar song on the radio. The year was 2000, and their debut single “Prayin’ for Daylight” was being played as part of a popular radio game for new songs, where listeners called in to share if they thought the song was a “Smash or Trash.”

“The first couple people didn’t like it, and we were sitting on the edge of our seats,” LeVox told Radio.com. “Like, ‘Oh, no!’ But then the rest came in pretty good.”

“Then our mom’s started to call in,” DeMarcus joked.

Rooney remembered the exact name of the game on the local Nashville station. “Shine the light or turn the light off, wasn’t it?”

“Turn the lights out on that!” DeMarcus said, mimicking a caller.

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Released in February of 2000, “Prayin’ for Daylight” went on to reach No. 3 on Billboard‘s Hot Country Singles chart.

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