Like someone with the Coronavirus coughing in your face, here come the 2020 ACM Awards nominations. With Maren Morris and Thomas Rhett leading the pack of nominees with five nominations each, Justin Bieber receiving three nominations, you might as well be getting news from the local doctor where you’re quarantine station is located.
Purported country music “viral star” Kane Brown is now a major label artist. And if you thought your acid reflux got a workout when you watched Luke Bryan and Sam Hunt up on stage claiming to be country singers, Kane Brown is guaranteed to kick it up yet another notch. The lesson of Kane Brown is that you can cheat to get ahead, and you don’t have to pay any dues or prove yourself in the marketplace.
Last week Bieber, shirtless and bored, and joined by B-level rapping prospects—like he always seems to have hanging around him in an attempt to make it look like he has friends and any semblance of street cred—decided to take to Instagram and post a snippet of his mocking rendition of Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire.” Then later he posted a picture of himself wearing a cowboy hat sideways…
Yes, yes, it’s the age-old complaint that music doesn’t sound as good as it used to, and that the singers of today aren’t nearly as good as the ones we grew up with. Though there is certainly a bit of “old man syndrome” that creeps into this endless debate about the direction of popular music, there is also very specific and irrefutable data that backs up these claims that music isn’t as good.
I don’t have any data to back my assertions up. But I’ll be damned that if in 2014, your average pop star isn’t more likely to outpace your average country star when it comes to substance and depth in their music. The dynamic has flipped, and it leaves one wondering if in the future “country” will be that bad word that infers a lack of artistic merit. Or if we haven’t already arrived there.
Tonight in New York City at the Lexington Avenue Armory, Taylor Swift will be the musical headliner for the Victoria’s Secret annual fashion show, set to air on CBS December 10th. It’s not necessarily how much skin will be on display at the show that is so alarming as much as the appearance seems like such a calculated assessment of Swift’s public perception and an attempt to recalculate it.
The irony of Bieber’s situation is that many music entertainers do the opposite of what he’s done, purposely using marijuana in their public image and music for marketing purposes. Artists who want to appeal to certain demographics or want to portray themselves in a certain way will many times integrate marijuana into their lyrics or logos of their public brand.
By all accounts, I should hate these dudes, and this album by proxy. t was announced that Babel was the best-selling debut so far in 2012, selling 600,000 copies and outpacing folks like Justin Bieber. Really? Has the “roots” revolution reached such a point that it is the most popular, mainstream thing going in music these days? How am I supposed to be okay with that, and where is this leading?
My overall grade of the 2011 CMA Awards would be “not terrible.” Jason Aldean could have swept the awards, and ushered in a new era in country music where a country rap song was the reigning Song of the Year. But Taylor’s Entertainer of the Year victory at least means that at least a little authenticity is still alive in the “country” genre. Or at least for another year.
2011, Blake Shelton, Brad Paisley, Brantley Gilbert, CMA Awards, Colt Ford, Eric Church, Hank Williams, Jason Aldean, Jr., Justin Bieber, Lady Antebellum, Lionel Ritchie, Little Jimmy Dickens, Luke Bryan, Martina McBride, Miranda Lambert, Scotty McCreery, Sugarland, Taylor Swift, The Band Perry
With Kid Rock hosting the CMT Awards, with country rapper Colt Ford performing, and with Jason Aldean and Ludacris closing the show out with a rap song, you can make the case that 15%-20% of the 2011 CMT Awards was either rap or rap inspired. I expect those percentages to increase until the number gets to 50%. Then the mono-genre will be fully realized, and the death of contrast will be complete.
Every few years a breakthrough discovery in science will immediately make everything we thought we knew previously completely useless, rendering textbooks, teachers, and training obsolete; like the discovery that Pluto is not a planet, or some physics breakthrough that debunks all previous theories. This is what seems to be happening in music on almost a weekly basis these days…
I feel the need to iterate to you some observations for last night’s 2011 Grammy Awards, if only to get them off my chest. This is not entirely going to be a bitch fest. Every year they air the Grammy’s, and every year people are left scratching their heads and feeling hopelessness for music, and so it was to be expected that this year would be no different…
Bob Dylan, Bob Seger, Charlie Louvin, Eminem, Esperanza Spalding, Garth Brooks, Grammy, Justin Bieber, Kid Rock, Lady Antebellum, Lady Gaga, Martina McBride, Merle Haggard, Miranda Lambert, Mumford and Sons, Randy Travis, Rihanna, Stevie Nicks, Taylor Swift, The Avett Brothers, The Black Crowes, The Suburbs
In the last decade or so, music has become a vital part of The Super Bowl presentation. The halftime show and National Anthem have always been a hoopla for the event, but with the addition of a pre-game concert, a rendition of “America, The Beautiful” and countless other opportunities to cross-market music to one of the biggest audiences television boasts all year…
In the last few years, cataloging the dizzying amount of names that have been associated with music that sometimes is fundamentally the same has become almost impossible, while true sonic variations on the 12 traditional genres abound.
Bogged down arguments about who is what, and what to call it feel so tired, unproductive, and irrelevant, and as the outmoded systems of music distribution and radio promotion continue to erode, classifying your music in one of the traditional 12 genres is becoming less necessary. . .
Chris Brown, Colt Ford, Darius Rucker, Jamey Johnson, Jason Aldean, Justin Bieber, Kevin Fowler, Kid Rock, Lady Antebellum, micro-genre, mono-genre, Rascal Flatts, super-genre, Taylor Swift, Tootsie's Orchid Lounge, XXX, Zac Brown Band