We were so swept up in praising ourselves for all the gains made in the independent realm of country music in 2017, it wasn’t until here in the dwindling moments of the year that we realized just what a dreadful era 2017 posed in the mainstream.
Calling this year’s race the “Big Machine Brickyard 400” is probably not the most savory development for true country music fans in itself. But Big Machine has announced they’re going the extra mile with their 2017 Brickyard sponsorship, at least for one of their artists: Brantley Gilbert.
Brantley Gilbert’s music may not be for you, but it’s hard to argue it’s not 100% him. He’s a roided-out, tatted-up, tribal Tap-Out truck-nutted horn-flashing Jesus-praising great American meat head who makes no apologies for himself and has built an entire army of fans that are just as hard headed and proud, and will follow Brantley over a bridge if asked.
Everywhere we turn, there are signs that the tide is turning in country music for the better. Chris Stapleton and Sturgill Simpson are turning the tables on the awards shows, a new generation of traditionalists like William Michael Morgan and Margo Price are finding surprising traction. But it’s not all rosy.
Blake Shelton, Brantley Gilbert, Brett Young, Calre Dunn, Chase Rice, Chris Lane, Dallas Davidson, Dierks Bentley, Dustin Lynch, Florida Georgia Line, Jana Kramer, Jason Aldean, Jerrod Niemann, Lee Brice, Luke Bryan, Steven Tyler, Thomas Rhett
Granted, Kinda Don’t Care is just kinda bad when you listen to it in totality. It’s not some horrifically terrible album when you compare it to some other efforts coming out of the mainstream at the moment. But Justin Moore does what all musical artists should refuse to do no matter what the cost—cross your core fans.
Can someone start up a Go Fund Me campaign to help Brantley Gilbert surgically remove the marbles out of his damn mouth? By golly I can’t understand a word this dude says. Brantley’s about the best case I’ve ever seen for someone’s self-absorbed, too-cool-for-school attitude translating into a debilitating speech impediment.
This year the event will be held for the second year in a row at the Austin 360 Amphitheater on the grounds of the Circuit of the America’s Formula 1 raceway just outside of Austin, and will feature an impressive list of talent, from Picnic mainstays like Johnny Bush, Ray Wylie Hubbard, and David Allan Coe, to newcomers such as Margo Price and Shakey Graves.
2016, Amber Digby, Asleep at the Wheel, Billy Joe Shaver, Brantley Gilbert, Cody Johnson, Dallas Wayne, David Allan Coe, Folk Uke, Jamestown Revival, Jamey Johnson featuring special guest Alison Krauss, Johnny Bush, Kris Kristofferson, Lee Ann Womack, Leon Russell, Margo Price, Paula Nelson, Raelyn Nelson Band, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Shakey Graves, Willie Nelson, Willie Nelson 4th of July Picnic
There’s a ton of great records from Hank starting the the late 70’s all the way up to the early 90’s that country fans will be pulling off of shelves for years to come when they’re looking for some good country music with a rock and roll kick, and if I had a vote I would induct Hank Williams Jr. into the Country Music Hall of Fame in the Modern Era category yesterday. But It’s About Time adds nothing to Hank Jr.’s legacy.
The original lineup of the once massive (and soon to be again) hard rock band Guns N’ Roses is apparently back on speaking terms, and has just been announced as one of the headliners of California’s Coachella Festival in April, with a potential stadium tour brewing according to sources sleeping with the band.
Yes ladies and gentlemen, over the last 24 hours or so, this “Brantley Gilbert Makes $10.5 Million Donation to Toys For Tots” headline has been circulating like a bad venereal disease passed around after the drunken office Christmas party, spreading all across the complicit landscape of country music media without anyone questioning the accuracy or legitimacy of the claim.
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.
If you haven’t heard of Kane Brown, you’re about to, whether you like it or not. You can pride yourself in being one of those country music fans impervious to the buzz machine the industry uses to attempt to reel you in. But Kane Brown is coming, and he will be ubiquitous . . . unless his entire career implodes on itself.
If there’s any silver lining to the dark, ominous clouds hanging like a low ceiling over country music’s female population, it’s that faced with the reality of their songs systematically failing at radio, they’re inadvertently bestowed the freedom to do whatever the hell they want without having to worry about the radio ramifications.
Saving Country Music contacted the Green Bay Police Department and confirmed 22 arrests were made during the stadium show, but any more specific information on arrests, ejections, or medical responses was not immediately available. However one enterprising local reporter, Doug Schneider of the Green Bay Press Gazette decided to listen in to the police scanner during the concert and Tweet what he heard.
Disregard that discussions about Bro-Country now feel like old hat ever since the trend trailed off except for a few last vestiges of outdated-feeling singles working through the system, Brantley Gilbert has decided he’s fed up with all the fuss about Bro-Country and has released a single saying as much. The song criticizes complaints about Bro-Country by listing off many of the same common tropes of the trend.
According to sources, a deal is in process for iTunes to purchase the Big Machine Label Group for $250 million. Big Machine’s current distribution deal with UMG is up, and Taylor Swift has one more album left on the label before her contract expires, leading to speculation Big Machine wants to sell before they risk losing their superstar.
Many already regarded the Travis Tritt song “Country Ain’t Country” from his 2002 album Strong Enough as a slightly-veiled protest song preaching against the changes in the country genre, even though the actual lines of the song deal much more with wider reaching cultural and geographical issues. But apparently there’s an original verse that doesn’t appear in the recorded version that overtly criticized CMT.
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
The downward spiral for mainstream country music continues as evidenced by the following list of some of the most horrible offerings of 2014. With how terrible these selections are, you could consider this not only the worst songs of 2014, but arguably a list of the majority of the worst songs in the history of country music. And with such a crowded field, only the worst of the worst were selected.
Beachin, Billy Ray Cyrus, Bottoms Up, Brantley Gilbert, Burnin' It Down, Chase Rice, Chillin' It, Cole Swindell, Donkey, Florida Georgia Line, Girl In Your Truck Song, Jake Owen, Jason Aldean, Jerrod Niemann, Leave The Night On, Lookin For That Girl, Luke Bryan, Maggie Rose, Sam Hunt, Sun Daze, This Is How We Roll, Tim McGraw, Worst songs 2014
As first reported on Tuesday (12-3) and then confirmed Wednesday afternoon, President and CEO of the Big Machine Label Group Scott Borchetta has partnered with American Idol to become the show’s new “mentor.” All of this news comes in stark contrast to how Scott Borchetta felt about the show in 2010 in the aftermath of Taylor Swift’s now legendary off-key performance at the Grammy Awards.