As first reported by Saving Country Music in October, The Grand Ole Opry will finally be returning to television via the recently-announced Circle Network owned by the Opry Entertainment Group—or at least portions of the show will be, along with expanded specialty programming tied to the iconic country music institution.
It’s been just over three years since Craig Morgan released any new music, and just over three years since his son, 19-year-old Jerry Greer, went missing on Kentucky Lake near the Kentucky and Tennessee border on a Sunday afternoon. The teen had been tubing on the lake with friends, and after hitting a big wave, failed to surface.
Surging up-and-coming country music artist Luke Combs will be the next member of the Grand Ole Opry. The 29-year-old was surprised during the Tuesday night (6-11) Opry presentation by traditionalist Craig Morgan, country legend John Conlee, and recent Grand Ole Opry member Chris Janson with the invitation.
If 90% of mainstream country music is garbage, then it stands to reason that 10% of it is at least decent, if not good or great. That calculus hasn’t really changed much recently, even as mainstream country has improved. What has changed is that 10% is actually finding traction on radio, at awards shows, and is making fierce inroads into the 90%’s monopoly.
The son of country artist Craig Morgan has been found dead after going missing on Kentucky Lake near the Kentucky and Tennessee border. 19-year-old Jerry Greer went missing near Mason’s Boat Dock and Marina on Sunday (7/10) afternoon just before 4 p.m. while tubing on the lake.
You can almost overlook Craig Morgan if you’re not careful. He’s not been cutting records nearly long enough to consider him some kind of elder or legend in country music. He’s had a few significant hits and noteworthy records over the years, but it’s not like he was a perennial chart topper even in his heyday in the mid oughts.
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
We all know them and we all hate them, those ubiquitous and ridiculous pop country songs that make us hang our heads in shame, embarrassed to call ourselves country fans, constantly making us having to explain that no, we don’t listen to that type of country. They pursue us doggedly, on the radio, over the speakers at the grocery store, blaring from a car full of high school kids at a red light.
1994, Achy Breaky Heart, Bad Country Songs, Big & Rich, Billy Ray Cyrus, Blake Shelton, Boys 'Round Here, Brad Paisley, Brown Chicken Brown Cow, Corn Star, Country Girl (Shake It For Me), Craig Morgan, Cruise, Dirt Road Anthem, Florida Georgia Line, Honky Tonk Badonkadonk, I Wanna Talk About Me, Jason Aldea, Kenny Chesney, Luke Bryan, Red Solo Cup, Save A Horse (Ride A Cowboy), She Think's My Tractor's Sexy, Stuck Like Glue, Sugarland, Taylor Swift, Tim McGraw, Toby Keith, Trace Adkins, Truck Yeah, Worst Country Songs of All Time
This year in popular country music, there were some glimmers of hope. Kacey Musgraves’ “Merry Go ‘Round” found some surprising traction and success, and Kellie Pickler’s 100 Proof may go down as one of the best mainstream country albums in years. But of course this was all counter-balanced by a gaggle of the worst songs “country” music has ever seen.
Beer With Jesus, Big Machine Records, Bucky Covington, Corn Star, Craig Morgan, Crusie, Drinking Side of Country, Florida Georgia Line, Kip Moore, Little Big Town, Mike Curb, Pontoon, Scott Borchetta, Shooter Jennings, Somethin' 'Bout A Truck, Taylor Swift, Thomas Rhett, Tim McGraw Truck Yeah, We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together
What a banner year it has been for bad songs in country music. After 2011’s “Red Solo Cup” by Toby Keith and Jason Aldean’s country/rap “Dirt Road Anthem” the bar has been raised for how low you must go to get attention for your twilighting music career. Put a clothesline clip on your nose, a paper bag on your knee, and dive in…if you dare.
Bucky Covington, Corn Star, Craig Morgan, Drinkin' Side Of Country, Jason Aldean, Kenny Chesney, Kip Moore, Little Big Town, Pontoon, Shooter Jennings, Somethin' 'Bout A Truck, Tim McGraw, Toby Keith, Truck Yeah
With the first single from the Big Machine Records-era of Tim McGraw, the country music mega-star pulls off the biggest sellout move of his career, and one of the biggest sellout moves ever seen from an established country music franchise name. Yes friends and neighbors, Tim McGraw has fallen prey to the hyper-trend of the country music laundry list truck song.