Hilarious Will Thompson Song Eviscerates “Checklist” Country

Yeah I know. The amount of country protest and parody songs swirling out there can sometimes get a little nauseating. They’ve become like their own subgenre. If you want to save country music, maybe make some actual country music and a healthier alternative as opposed to complaining about it. But every once in a while one of these songs comes along that hits the nail so firmly on the head, it’s worth celebrating.

Will Thompson has released one such song and a great accompanying video that takes the terrible trend of “checklist” country songs to task. As one of the precursors and defining elements of the much maligned “Bro-Country” movement, songs that seem to do nothing more than run through a checklist of country-isms have been the bane of actual country fans for going on two decades.

Not only does Will Thompson’s “Checklist” perfectly parody problematic country music found on the radio, it also maligns a lot of the other elements that accompany these kinds of songs, like rap cadences, the rising radio chorus, and Auto-Tuned vocal signals. He’s pretty merciless and thorough in his evisceration of this style of “country” music, actually checking off all the acrid elements of checklist country.

A producer, recording artist, and songwriter from a multi-generational family of musicians, the Florida-based Will Thompson wrote the song with Ashley Watson just to be a joke. But when he performed it at the Annual Songwriters Festival in Panama City, Florida, the crowd ate it up. Thompson discovered he’d touched a nerve and had something important on his hands.

Of course these days, checklist songs and Bro-Country are somewhat on the wane as more country-sounding and more substantive artists are starting to take hold in the mainstream, while independent artists are rising up to challenge the mainstream and adding more meaningful songs to the country music diet.

But checklist songs still play a significant role on country radio, and Will Thompson’s “Checklist” is a perfect illustration of why country music should move on from them for good.

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