It’s so easy to get swept up in stereotyping mainstream country as being completely void of anything worth your time these days, but in truth there’s still a lot of great music in the popular music world, however a small percentage it might be of the total package. Saying the mainstream has nothing good to offer is narrowing your musical experience no different than saying that music is bad because it’s not popular.
Yet another big name country star is speaking out about the current state of country music. This time it is RCA Records’ Jake Owen. “We need more of those kinds of songs in [country music]. “We need more songs than just songs about tailgates and fuckin’ cups and Bacardi and stuff like that. We need songs that get ourselves back to the format that made me love it.”
Once again the Europeans out class their cross Atlantic counterparts with the newly-launched Country Music Magazine from Team Rock—the same people who’ve brought the UK the long-running and widely-distributed Classic Rock Magazine. Despite the generic name, this magazine is anything but, with 132 extra wide glossy full-color pages, accompanied by a free, 15-track CD with music from Sturgill Simpson and Guy Clark.
Austin Lucas, Bill Kirchen, Blake Shelton, Country Music Magazine, Deniel Romano, Ed Mitchell, Fifth on the Floor, Florida Georgia Line, Guy Clark, Jack Clement, Johnny Cash, Kacey Musgraves, Kris Kristofferson, Laura Cantrell, LeAnn Rimes, Patty Griffin, steel guitar player Buddy Emmons, Steve Martin, Sturgill Simpson, Team Rock, Tony Joe White, UK, Wanda Jackson
37 years ago, Austin City Limits was founded to be the visual accompaniment to a book called The Improbable Rise of Redneck Rock by Texas author Jan Reed. The book set out to chronicle the formation of the Austin, TX music scene that transpired in the late 60’s and into the 70’s, along with its many artists and side characters.
ACL, ACL Fest, Austin City Limits, Cheap Trick, Coldplay, Dale Watson, Dave Matthews Band, Gary P. Nunn, Hayes Carll, Jan Reed, Kacey Musgraves, Pearl Jam, Ray Wylie Hubbard, The Improbable Rise of Redneck Rock
In Zac Brown’s recent disparaging comments about Luke Bryan’s hit “That’s My Kind Of Night,” Zac went out of his way to lay as little blame as possible on Luke Bryan. Instead it was the song itself, and its songwriters that drew the brunt of Zac Brown’s ire. Though Zac didn’t name any names, the likely target of Zac’s criticism was country songwriter Dallas Davidson.
Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, Colt Ford, criticism, Dallas Davidson, Florida Georgia Line, Honky Tonk Badonkadonk, Jamey Johnson, Justin Moore, Kacey Musgraves, Lady Antebellum, Luke Bryan, Luke Laird, Miranda Lambert, Possessed by Paul James, Randy Houser, Rhett Atkins, Shane McAnally, songwriters, songwriting, That's My Kind Of Night, Trace Adkins, Wade Bowen, Zac Brown
The war of words concerning the state of country music continues, with Jason Aldean being the latest to enter the fray. Responding to comments by Zac Brown in a recent radio interview, Jason Aldean took to his Instagram account to call out Zac Brown. “To those people runnin their mouths, trust me when i tell u that nobody gives a shit what u think.”
Country music in 2013 feels like the best of times, and the worst of times. While a few top male performers perpetrate untold atrocities on the integrity of the genre, the rise of independent music and infrastructure in the marketplace is now almost to the point where it equals its corporate counterpart. Quality songs and worthy artists are beginning to see more and more support…
Ashley Monroe, Austin Lucas, Avett Brothers, Blake Shelton, Bobb Bare, Caitlin Rose, CMA Awards, Cory Branan, Country Music Hall of Fame, Dale Watson, Darius Rucker, David Letterman, East Nashville, Gary Allan, Grand Ole Opry, Guy Clark, Hellbound Glory, Jack Clement, Jason Isbell, Kacey Musgraves, Keith Urban, Kid Rock, Lindi Ortega, Mumford and Sons, Nashville, Old Crow Medicine Show, Old Farts and Jackasses, Outlaw Country Music Hall of Fame, Pokey LaFarge, Rascal Flatts, Ray Price, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Shovels and Rope, Sturgill Simpson, Taylor Swift, The Lumineers, Tom Petty, Twones Van Zandt, Valerie June, Zac Brown
The parade of country artists coming out to criticize the direction of country music continues, with Gary Allan now coming out in an interview with Larry King, decrying country music’s move towards pop, and specifically Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood. “I would say they’re pop artists making a living in the country genre. I also feel like we lost our genre.”
If you’ve been wishing for a print magazine that would cover cool up-and-coming country artists right beside the big names, and not just focus on the here and now but take the time to look back on the past greats of the genre, well you may just have received your wish. The inaugural issue of “Country Music Magazine presented by Classic Rock” is being released September 11th.
Austin Lucas, BUddy Emmons, Carrie Rodriguez, Case Hardin, Classic Rock Magazine, Country Music Magazine, Edie Brickell, England, Fifth on the Floor, Guy Clark, Johnny Cash, Kacey Musgraves, LeAnn Rimes, My Darling Clementine, Steve Martin, Sturgill Simpson, Tony Joe White, UK, Wanda Jackson
Say what you want about Kacey Musgraves, but you have to give the young songstress credit for speaking her mind. In a recent Q&A with GQ Magazine, the Texas-born songwriter had some spicy things to say about a few of Nashville’s current infatuations. When GQ asked her what musical trend needed to die out immediately, Kacey responded, “Anyone singing about trucks, in any form, in any song, anywhere.”
Everywhere in the independent music world you’re seeing songwriters who have struggled for years finally starting to get singed to record labels and releasing career-caliber albums. Whereas other sectors of the music industry seem to be gripped by the fear that digitization and streaming may ultimately doom the business of music, talented songwriters are benefiting from the search for the next writer to break out.
Amanda Shires, Ashley Monroe, Austin City Limits, Austin Lucas, Caitlin Rose, Dale Watson, Drive By Truckers, Jason Isbell, Kacey Musgraves, Pokey LaFarge, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Rolling Stones, Shovels & Rope, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Sturgill Simpson, Valerie June
Once again a member of the Texas music scene has delivered a song that gives voice and reason to how the rest of us feel. Wade Bowen’s “Trucks” aims its big, diamond-plated bumper at the incessant references to tailgates and four wheel drives in modern pop country songs and slams on the gas.
Welcome ladies and gentlemen to the LIVE blog for the 2013 broadcast of CMA’s Fan Fest, dubbed over the last few years as “Country’s Night to Rock.” Since our live blogs for mainstream country’s big awards shows have been so successful over the years, and because we had many requests to also create a platform for commiseration, it was decided we’ll give it a shot for this event too.
Blake Shelton, Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, CMA Fan Fest, Country's Night to Rock, Darius Rucker, Eric Church, Jake Owen, Jason Mraz, Kacey Musgraves, Keith Urban, Kellie Pickler, Kelly Clarkson, Kid Rock, Lady Antebellum, Lenny Kravitz, Live Blog, Taylor Swift, Tim McGraw
Exquisitely antiqued and strikingly original, old school country singer and native Canadian Lindi Ortega is the northern emissary for country music’s current female revolution. A class act all around that is regarded just as highly for her self-penned songs as her heavenly (or devilish) voice, Lindi is a creative maelstrom that sends the room spinning from her ability to expose the most blinding beauty from life’s inherent darkness.
You know how you may root for a hometown sports team for years even though they’re terrible, and then out of the blue when they start to get good you don’t know how to behave because you’ve identified with losing for so long? Well that is what is happening in 2013 with many of the artists Saving Country Music and so many loyal fans have been following for years.
For years Saving Country Music has been preaching that the result of these idiotic, bellicose laundry list country songs perpetuated by country music’s belligerent males would result in a trash culture full of fighting and general disrespect for everything but materialism and the consumer culture. This was on full display this Saturday (June, 22) when Kenny Chesney’s “No Shoe’s Nation Tour” stopped in Pittsburgh.
Former Dixie Chick Natalie Maines has a knack for allowing her words to precede her. She left country after her quote about George W. Bush torpedoed the trio’s career, and ever since she’s been lobbing grenades back in country’s direction, including yet another in a new Rolling Stone article that represents her as “declaring war on Nashville.”
Kacey Musgraves has been doing her level best to disrupt the well-ordered country music apple cart since she released the single “Merry Go ‘Round” last September. Recently when speaking to American Songwriter, Kacey elaborated on her strange existence in the mainstream country format, and how she’s not exactly happy where it is, and the stereotypes it brings to her music.
When it comes to country music, it is the best of times, and the worst of times depending on if you’re talking about male or female artists. While it’s easy to focus on the awful, inane music from mainstream country’s male-dominated ruling class, there is an inspiring sect of female performers attempting to emerge from the heavy shadows of towering males and their tiring musical pap. So why the gender gap?
Think what you want about Kacey Musgraves, her recent album Same Trailer, Different Park, or even her blockbuster hit “Merry Go ‘Round,” but it’s hard to view her story as nothing less than an illustration of the resounding power of song. Whatever depths of shallowness Nashville’s major labels might be mired in at the moment, one song from an independent-minded artist did the unthinkable.
As one of the original members of Uncle Tupelo, Son Volt frontman Jay Farrar is one of the forebearers of the alt-country sound that now has morphed into the all-encompassing Americana behemoth that here in 2013 is enjoying a meteoric rise in influence. But instead of trying to figure out how to ride that popularity wave, Farrar and Son Volt release an album that is so doggone country, you could almost call it conceptualized.
Same Trailer, Different Park is the loss of corporate country’s innocence. It is a total flip of perspective from the fare the mainstream country public is used to. It’s an awakening, an awareness of an alternative set of ideas that dash the mores that keep radio country and its listeners locked in suffocating patterns that don’t allow the soul the space for self-exploration and growth.
Before this album, I’d been mostly opinion neutral on Holly Williams. Being the granddaughter of Hank Williams, the daughter of Hank Jr., and the sister of Hank3 appointed her music the respect of more than a cursory look. She was neither here nor there, and with a lack of scene support her career sort of drifted. The Highway, released on her own Georgiana label, changes all of that.
Let’s not get ahead of ourselves. But I’d be lying if I said I’m not becoming very engrossed in the idea of Kacey Musgraves getting big, and very big, and doing it with fresh, new, exciting, substantive material that could shake up the current stagnant climate of country radio and the mainstream in general. All the dominoes seem to be aligned for Kacey