Due to COVID-19, and then the protests and riots after the George Floyd killing, the Saving Country Music snark machine has been pretty much powered down and collecting dust for the better part of 2020. But there has been as few instances of country music malfeasance so egregious, it would be unconscionable to not address them.
Florida Georgia Line
They always say to watch out for a hillbilly with a hit record, and the week that the mustachioed and mulleted Morgan Wallen minted a #1 at country radio with the R&B-infused and derivative “Chasin’ You,” he was arrested by Nashville’s finest outside of Kid Rock’s “Big Ass Honky Tonk” bar.
It turns out Saving Country Music wasn’t the only one that thought the chorus of the recent new single from Florida Georgia Line called “I Love My Country” sounded eerily similar to the chorus of a Kane Brown song called “Short Skirt Weather.” Now Kane Brown and his co-writers have officially been added as songwriters.
The song Florida Georgia Line played a snippet of appeared to have the title of “Feels Good.” But apparently Carrie Underwood was not feeling good about any of it. Underwood never replied or even addressed the duo’s proposal publicly, which left many speculating if Carrie had snubbed them.
And we’re not talking close approximations here that come up commonly in music. Whether it’s the latest symptom of the sameness permeating much of mainstream country at the moment, or a straight up ripoff is a matter for audio experts and the courts. But the similarities are patently obvious.
Our worst fears when seeing that the name of Florida Georgia Line’s new song was “I Love My Country” is that we were in store for some jingoistic anthem slathering it on thick about how much they support the troops and the good ol’ stars and stripes, exploiting people’s patriotism circa Toby Keith 2003. Oh, if we could have only been so lucky.
In a teary-eyed address on Instagram Wednesday night (3-18), Zac Brown explained that after 15 years of touring, he was having to let go of 90% of his full time employees as part of his road crew due and support staff due to the Coronavirus cancellations. Though there is no doubt this was a tough decision for Zac Brown, some are questioning if it was necessary.
Alright, so we’ve run down the Saving Country Music Album of the Year nominees, and awarded The Winner. And we’ve also populated the 2019 Essential Albums List. Now it’s time to single out the dogs of the last calendar year and let them hear it. Here ladies and gentlemen are your WORST “Country” Albums for 2019.
Compiling both sales and streaming data over the last ten years, Chris Stapleton’s “Traveller” not only comes out on top, it does so even though its closest competitors had a head start. “Traveller” wasn’t released until halfway into the decade on May 5th, 2015, and unlike its Bro-Country counterparts, received only sporadic radio play.
Actual country music is actually starting to emerge as a serious trend in mainstream country today, but we still need to see more widespread adoption before we declare ourselves in the midst of another neotraditionalist resurgence. Instead, the new trend that has begun to emerge is being described as “Boyfriend Country.”
Man, the Academy of Country Music sure knows how to soft pedal the excitement behind some of their awards. Recently they’ve been unveiling their ‘Decade’ awards, stringing them out over months instead of having an event to announce them, surprising artists backstage at gigs and shoving an award in their face as a few flashbulbs go off.
Don’t ask Charlie Daniels a straight question unless you want a straight answer. Recently while celebrating the 40th Anniversary of his signature song “The Devil Went Down To Georgia,” Daniels was asked if he was okay with bands like Florida Georgia Line changing the sound of country, to which he responded emphatically and succinctly, “No.”
Dear NFL Fans, As the true disciples and aficionados of actual country music, we want to formally apologize to you all for the bad country music and doltish characters you will be forced to endure during this week’s NFL Draft coverage. Please accept our deepest apologies.
Spearheaded by the positively Wallen received for his Jason Isbell “Cover Me Up” cover, he’s just released a studio version of the song, and surprisingly, it’s lossless in quality compared to the original acoustic version. Tastefully produced and arranged with sparse accompaniment, it’s arguably even better.
The debate about what is country music and what isn’t is an eternal one. But a 1:53-long viral “song” that is really nothing more than an internet meme entitled “Old Town Road” by rapper “Lil Nas X” has rekindled the debate anew, with critical implications behind it.
It’s said that time is the harshest critic of all. If that’s the case, time has not been very kind to the music of Florida Georgia Line at all. The title of their new album ‘Can’t Say I Ain’t Country’ isn’t fooling anybody, and apparently the fickle pop country music fan has moved on en masse to the likes of Luke Combs and others.
When it comes to popular music, every generation has its goat. And no, we’re not talking about the hip social media acronym for the “Greatest of All Time.” We’re talking about the sacrificial kind—the one synonymous with an ornery horned land animal that eats your garden and shits everywhere.
Pop star turned country music carpetbagger Bebe Rexha made headlines last Thursday evening (2-7) during a Spotify party held in Los Angeles to honor all of the women up for the Grammy’s New Artist of the Year award, when she stopped down her performance of “Meant To Be,” and went on an expletive-fueled tirade.
All the information about the 2019, 61st Annual Grammy Awards you need in one place, including the performers, the presenters, the nominees, and the important narratives the night will present in country and roots music, and beyond.
You shouldn’t have to tell anybody how country you are. It should be patently obvious in the first few bars of a song that an artist or song is country. Unfortunately though, with the loss of country instrumentation, the pervasiveness of electronic beats, performers feel the need to explain how they’re country.
Here we are with a nice, tidy little bow wrapped around 2018, with the barrage of end-of-year lists finally published and in the past, the confetti from New Year’s celebrations all swept up, and the promise of an exciting new year of country music on the way. But how good or bad really was country music in 2018?
Brent Cobb, Chris Stapleton, Cody Jinks, Florida Georgia Line, Kacey Musgraves, Luke Combs, Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives, Midland, Miranda Lambert, Sam Hunt, Turnpike Troubadours, Tyler Childers
Of course people are different. We learn that at six-years-old. Of course everyone should be respectful to each other, and try to see other people’s perspectives. But this is the premise for a nursery rhyme, not a country song. Adults use subtly, nuance, and story to get important points across they wish to convey in music.
Cute, Florida Georgia Line, cute. Call your latest album Can’t Say I Ain’t Country and act as if this somehow insulates you against what any country music fan worth their salt already knows inherently. I can, and will say you ain’t country if I damn well please, as will the rest of us.