Where the country world comes in is in the heavy-handed and stark use of country and Southern influences in Paul’s Boutique, made by hip-hop pioneers from New York City. In many ways, country and Southern sounds and themes are the foundation for Paul’s Boutique. The problem with Paul’s Boutique was that it was not very popular in its time, and was considered a flop compared to License to Ill.
The current landscape of hip American music is like a lyric out of a classic Bob Dylan song about the changing times. Old is new, and nerdy is cool. It is in this environment that the Alabama Shakes have flourished like the imperceptible germs on the tips of your fingers when rubbed into a Petri dish and left to fester. The Alabama Shakes are not for everyone, but I struggle to find a wart to point at.
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