This is all especially concerning since Country Music USA is the basis of the new Ken Burns film on country music, which will reach a much wider audience than this final chapter, and like all Ken Burns films, be referenced by many generations to come as a master work of country music history.
While in the independent realm of country music, 2017 went down as a record year for quality projects, the mainstream was downright abysmal pretty much across the board for both songs and albums. There actually were quite a few pretty good songs, but most struggled to gain traction in the charts.
A bevy of headlines from numerous country music media sources incensed about the restrictions being put on media emerged in the aftermath of the CMA asking media to not focus on the Las Vegas tragedy or politics in the CMA red carpet, cascading into the internet fury we so regularly see in the current political climate.
One would be hard pressed to find another industry that is as insular, antiquated, and downright embarrassing as the one that is in charge of managing the affairs of mainstream country radio. Despite checks and balances that are supposed to be in place, the amount of backroom deals and dirty practices is unconscionable.
When Brad Paisley included a song called “Gold All Over The Ground” on his recent album Love and War, we thought it was just a one-off occasion where one of today’s country artists took a poem from Johnny Cash and turned it into a song. The poem “Gold All Over The Ground” was first composed […]
Two titans of country and bluegrass music who helped make The Grand Ole Opry and the Ryman Auditorium the storied institutions they are, were repaid with eternal markers for their contributions when life-sized bronze statues of the two men were unveiled on the grounds of the Ryman this week in Nashville.
The poem “Gold All Over The Ground” was first composed in March of 1967 about Johnny Cash’s wife June Carter, and was published in 2016 in the posthumous Johnny Cash poetry collection called Forever Words. It’s not just Johnny Cash’s 50-year-old word that make Brad Paisley’s “Gold All Over The Ground” traditional though.
Not only was it a DJ comprising the afterparty entertainment, of which attendees had to pay £15 to get in, but the music selected wasn’t even country. “DJ Bad Ash,” a.k.a. Ashlee Willis, who is a DJ from Los Angeles, thought Snoop Dogg, Miley Cyrus, and other non-country selections would be the perfect music for the afterparty.
The prospects of a new incarnation of the long-running country music-themed television show Hee-Haw being in the works opens up a whole realm of delicious possibilities of how the show could take shape, and who could comprise the cast. So if a new Hee-Haw show comes to pass, who should be part of the cast?
“Today” isn’t particularly great, but it’s actually aimed at adults instead of children, features steel guitar, mandolin, and fiddle, and if we’ve figured out nothing else about Paisley’s still unnamed upcoming album (of which this is the second single), it appears he’ll at least have opportunities to unsheathe the Telecaster again.
The next trend in country may not be defined by a style or a sound, but who is involved in it. But if collaborations will be the next big trend, how about putting out just a little bit of effort to make sure that the great talent that is going unrecognized in country music itself gets some love?
Ashley Monroe, Blake Shelton, Brad Paisley, Brandy Clark, Chris Stapleton, Demi Lovato, Dierks Bentley, Dolly Parton, Elle King, Gwen Stefani, Johnny Bush, Kenny Chesney, Kenny Rogers, Little Big Town, Lori McKenna, Miranda Lambert, Pharrell, Pink, Pitbull, Steve Fromholz, The Pistol Annies, Tim McGraw, Townes Van Zandt, Willie Nelson
Brad Paisley’s old enough to be Demi Lovato’s father, but let that be no object to them singing a song together about makeup sex. Demi Lovato has no business in country, and we know where this is all headed. Surprisingly though, “Without A Fight” is not as terrible as one would suspect.
“They send out a letter that says you know, â€˜We are kind of demanding that you must be here so many times a year to continue your membership.’ Because it’s just not fair,” Lorrie Morgan explains. “People want to say, â€˜Hey I’m a member of the Opry,’ and not want to come back. The Opry takes dedication and it takes love. It takes love.”
The feature film American Saturday Night: Live From The Grand Ole Opry has just announced that after a limited run of shows at select theaters in December, it is expanding to various Carmike Cinemas and North American theaters across the United States on February 12th. However the film’s top three stars are Opry members who regularly don’t pay their proper dues.
American Saturday Night: Live From The Grand Ole Opry, Blake Shelton, Brad Paisley, Brett Eldredge, Carrie Underwood, Chris Janson, Darius Rucker, EmiSunshine, Holly Williams, Jean Sheppard, Jim Ed Brown, Little Big Town, Love & Theft, Mo Pitney, The Band Perry, The Grand Ole Opry
In peep show fashion over the last few days, Hank Williams Jr. has revealed he’ll be releasing his latest album called “It’s About Time.” It will be Hank Jr.’s first album on Big Machine Records’ NASH Icon imprint. He signed to the label meant to give new life to older artists in late April.
Maddie & Tae have become the perfect foil to today’s male country stars. They’re like the Minnie Pearl of country music’s Millennial generation. Staunch traditionalists are never going to give Maddie & Tae a serious chance, but that doesn’t mean their music (and “Shut Up and Fish”) doesn’t symbolize a wholesale reversal of course for what we’re used to the mainstream serving.
The summer is heating up, and so are the disturbing stories surrounding the behavior at mainstream country music concerts. In 2014, concert conduct became a big concern as statistics and specific stories flooded in as the summer rolled on, and 2015 is shaping up to be just as concerning, if not more. A suspect from Nevada County, California has been arrested in connection with a rape at a Brad Paisley concert.
The summer concert season in country music has only just begun, and already were beginning to see concerning stories about how this year could be just as bad or worse than last year for concert behavior. The 91 arrests beg the question if we are truly seeing worse behavior than previous years at country concerts, or if it is a symptom of better reporting, and more aggressive enforcement at concerts.
We hypothesize often that the lyrics of popular country songs and other popular hits are slowly becoming more simplified and dumbed down, but now there is a study that puts data behind this hypothesis. Andrew Powell-Morse of Seat Smart recently took 225 different songs compiled in 4 separate genre datasets from 2005 to 2014, and analyzed them according to Readability Score.
Well the saga of Sony Nashville CEO Gary Overton’s comments to The Tennessean of “If you’re not on country radio, you don’t exist” uttered in late February just took another interesting turn. Gary Overton is out at one of Music Row’s very top executive spots. Announced Tuesday morning (3-17), Gary Overton is stepping down from his position as Sony Nashville’s top executive at the end of March.
Out of the 67 current members of the Opry, only 25 of them fulfilled their 10 appearance obligation, and three of those died during the year. 11 members didn’t make any appearances at all. But what may be more interesting is who is appearing on the Opry to take up the slack. Of the Top 11 performing members at the Grand Ole Opry in 2014, the average age was 79-years-old.
Bill Anderson, Blake Shelton, Bobby Osborne, Brad Paisley, Byron Fay, Carrie Underwood, Chris Jansen, Connie Smith, Craig Morgan, Darius Rucker, Elizabeth Cook, George Hamilton IV, Jean Shepard, Jeannie Seely, Jesse McReynolds, Jim Ed Brown, Jimmy C. Newman, John Conley, Little Big Town, Little Jimmy Dickens, Lorrie Morgan, Mike Snider, Old Crow Medicine Show, Pete Fisher, Rascal Flatts, Riders In The Sky, Sarah Darling, The Grand Ole Opry, The Henningsens, The Whites, Vince Gill, WSM
2014 has been a year of great flux in country music, with some legendary successes by independent artists and new mainstream artists, and the shuffling out of other artists and the fumbling of what once were legendary, high flying careers. Here’s a run down of the five biggest winners and losers in the greater country music world in 2014.
American Idol, Big Machine Records, Blake Shelton, Brad Paisley, Brandy Clark, Brantley Gilbert, Dierks Bentley, Florida Georgia Line, Garth Brooks, IBMA, Jason Aldean, Jerrod Niemann, Kacey Musgraves, Keith Urban, Sam Hunt, Scott Borchetta, Shane McAnally, Sturgill Simpson, Taylor Swift, Zac Brown Band
Once again Marty Stuart and the Fabulous Superlatives prove they are at the core of keeping the traditions of country music alive, while doing so in a manner that is energetic, inviting, informed, and broad-based where people of all stripes—the Saturday night and Sunday morning people—can come together and enjoy the gift of good country music together.
Brad Paisley, Gospel, Hargus "Pig" Robbins, Harry Stinson, Johnny Cash, Keith Urban, Kenny Vaughan, Marty Stuart, Mavis Staples, Mickey Raphael, Paul Martin, Review, Saturday Night / Sunday Morning, Willie Nelson
All we’ve been hearing from Kenny Chesney in the run up to the release of his new album The Big Revival is how badass it is going to be because he took an entire year off of touring to focus on it, at one point scrapped an entirely completed album awash in beer and tailgate songs to make it, and did some serious soul searching about the direction he wanted to take.