“It’s definitely not a country record,” Sturgill Simpson told Sarah Silverman point blank back in November of 2018 about the new album. The “definitely” underscores that there’s no wiggle room in that interpretation. So the question is, why is Sound & Fury on the Billboard country charts?
Green River Ordinance
Out of all the mischaracertizations, malfeasance, hidden agendas, outright lies, and sheer ignorance behind Lil Nas X’s viral hit “Old Town Road” and its disputed place in the country genre, perhaps the most idiotic and out-of-touch development of them all has been this ludicrous notion that Billy Ray Cyrus is in any way relevant to country music.
On Friday (5-13), it was announced that Billboard would finally be adding an Americana chart to their weekly albums chart roster. This is 10 years after the Grammy Awards began to recognize Americana, nearly 17 years after the Americana Music Association formed.
A week from this evening, the music industry will be gathering in Los Angeles for the the world’s biggest music event of the year: The Grammy Awards. Unlike many years, fans of true and traditional country music will have someone to root for when it comes to the night’s biggest prize, even if it isn’t the most ideal artist to champion.
For all the non-country artists, albums, and songs showing up on Billboard’s country charts recently, it was certainly a curious decision by Billboard chart managers to make an example of a poor band from Ft. Worth called Green River Ordinance this week. Despite the insistence of the band, and a clear sonic distinction to their music of country being the primary influence, their new album Fifteen was excluded from the country charts.
For the last couple of years country fans have been questioning how chart managers for Billboard and other entities could listen to certain songs or performers and consider them country in the slightest. Yet here is a band making music that’s more country than it is anything else, and more country than most of what you hear on country radio, and Billboard is denying their admittance on the country charts.