Shel Silverstein is known for his whimsical and twisted children's poetry, compiled in books such as Where the Sidewalk Ends and A Light in the Attic. However, the Chicago native had many talents: He also wrote and illustrated the beloved children's book The Giving Tree and was a prolific songwriter, especially for country artists.

In fact, Silverstein's songs were recorded in the 1960s and '70s by Johnny Cash, Bobby Bare, Kris Kristofferson, Waylon Jennings, Emmylou Harris, Judy Collins and dozens more artists. Multiple musicians released de facto covers albums featuring only Silverstein songs; Bare and his son, Bobby Bare Jr., even released a 2010 tribute album, Twistable, Turnable Man: A Musical Tribute to the Songs of Shel Silverstein, featuring luminaries covering Silverstein's songs.

It's easy to hear why Silverstein's songs were so popular: Not only are they clever and funny, but they're also rife with melancholy and heartbreak, and feature vivid characters that might be occasionally down on their luck -- but still maintain their pride and dignity. Silverstein never mocked his protagonists; he simply tried to empathize with them.

Below, learn more about 10 country songs you might not have realized were written by Silverstein.