Jason Aldean will receive the Dick Award for the Decade from the ACMs come April—“Dick” being for Dick Clark, who this decade award was just renamed after, and who luckily is dead so he doesn’t have to see his name besmirched by being associated with the likes of Jason Aldean.
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.
It’s now been two months since purely pop star Bebe Rexha eclipsed the all-time record on the 70-year-old Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for consecutive weeks at #1, and there is still no end in sight for the song’s reign. 43 weeks now the song has remained in the top spot, with challengers coming and going with no real threat.
You complain that the songs from today’s top country stars are no good and they should start cutting songs that are halfway decent like the ones your favorite independent and underground artists play … until they attempt to do that very thing, and come across like total dork asses.
A Canadian songwriter named Connor Shaw wants you to consider his case of a stolen song. The Edmonton-based composer penned and recorded a demo-style version of a song called “Easy” that he uploaded on YouTube in November of 2016, and the song happens to sound eerily similar to the massive Jason Aldean single “You Make It Easy.”
It’s 24 weeks atop the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for Bebe Rexha’s collaboration with Florida Georgia Line, “Meant To Be.” This means the song first recorded and released solely as a pop single has now tied Florida Georgia Line’s “Cruise” for the 2nd longest-running #1 single in the Billboard Hot Country Songs history.
Country music in 2018: “Man Artist feat. Woman Artist.” Wash, rinse, repeat. This is one way to get Miranda Lambert back on the radio I guess, releasing Jason Aldean’s “Drowns The Whiskey” as a single. Too bad Jason Aldean has to be involved, and the only way virtually any woman gets on country radio these days is being “feat.”
Prine has completely shattered all sales expectations, and has put together the best debut sales week by an independent artist in the country space in the modern era. This is also by far the best chart performance for John Prine in his career. He just had his best sales week since Nielsen Music began tracking and verifying sales starting in 1991.
For many true country music performers, the bug to write, sing, and play country music bit them at an early age, and never left. For others, country music is simply a vehicle for fame and riches. Specifically, many of them first tried to make it in professional sports before flunking out or getting sidelined with injury.
Jason Aldean is the latest mainstream country music bro to make it hard to be a mainstream country hater with his latest single, “You Make It Easy.” It’s certainly not anywhere close to an exceptional effort, and we’d be fools to believe that the puffy purveyor of such filthy tire fires as “Dirt Road Anthem” and “1994” has turned a page.
The President of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, or UFC, is furious with the Jason Aldean camp for allegedly turning down the UFC’s offer to sing the National Anthem before UFC 2016 Saturday night in Las Vegas, citing that he was still to shaken up to perform, and may never to perform again, only to show up to unexpectedly on SNL.
Music is the way we get through these moments. And though others have tried valiantly, Eric Church is the one so far, verified by the viral reaction, that has stepped out of the shadows of grief to deliver the light and the message we’ve all been waiting to hear, and put words to the emotions we all feel.
I understand. For those of you who are for strong new gun regulations that could potentially help prevent the massacre like we saw in Las Vegas, the idea of mainstream country music’s top artists coming out against the NRA is a salivating, sumptuous idea. But it’s never going to happen.
You know me. I’ve made an entire career out of exploiting any and every minuscule chink in mainstream country’s armor, and rearing back and reefing pop country’s worst offenders right square in the short pants for any perceived slight. And specifically, Jason Aldean has been a favorite target of Saving Country Music.
In April, WME, who represents country music superstar Luke Bryan, received a letter from the FTC, or Federal Trade Commission. The letter makes reference to an Instagram picture where Luke Bryan is touting his clothing line that is called “HFE,” which is short for the title of his hit single, “Huntin’ Fishin’ and Lovin’ Every Day.”
Wonder why pretty much every mainstream country single sounds ostensibly the same? It’s probably because they all pretty much do. Lill illustrates how nine songs on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart all employ the same exact drum beat, and within the same 15 or so beats per minute.
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
Screw me, but I just don’t have a strong opinion about this thing one way or the other. Sometimes that happens. If you think this song and video is amazing, then awesome. If you think it’s stupid, I can see that perspective too. In the end it’s kind of a wash for me.
“You have to always be conscious of the songs. I never want the songs to be too songwriterly or too clever,” Jason Aldean said in a recent interview. “I think you do have to make it, to some extent, black and white. The song has to say what it means and it means what it says. If you try to get too tricky with the lyrics, it gets confusing.
Now that some of the dust has settled since Sturgill Simpson made his inflammatory comments about the mistreatment of Merle Haggard on Monday (8-29), many others have taken the opportunity to weigh in on the matters on both sides of the country music cultural divide.
Every year we wonder if it can get any worse, and while there are positive signs for country music’s future all over the place, the bad stuff somehow continues to only get worse. The only saving grace is that many of the songs highlighted below have become commercial flops, whereas in previous years it would be a virtual Top 10 on the country charts.