After two weeks of less than favorable lineups for the Grand Ole Opry’s Saturday night quarantine performances, the Opry returns Saturday, May 23rd with a great lineup to honor the fallen men and women of the military for Memorial Day weekend, as well as the frontline workers battling COVID-19.
These Opry performances during the Coronavirus have held a unique gravity due to the circumstances, and you can feel that weight in each song and moment. But sticking out like a sore thumb through the process has been the presence of pop country radio personality Bobby Bones.
We’ve already run down the Greatest Country Albums of the Decade, and in there, albums in the mainstream were given fair competition to be included, and some made the cut. But in the spirit of inclusiveness and impartiality, let’s make sure the great records from the mainstream get their due as well.
Alan Jackson, Ashley McBryde, Brandy Clark, Caitlyn Smith, Chris Stapleton, Dierks Bentley, Eric Church, George Strait, Jamey Johnson, Jon Pardi, Kacey Musgraves, Kalie Shorr, Kellie Pickler, Kip Moore, Miranda Lambert, Mo Pitney, Pistol Annies, Randy Houser, Reba McEntire, William Michael Morgan
Here are the greatest country and roots albums of the last decade in Saving Country Music’s estimation. Albums were regarded primarily on quality, and how they held up over the decade, as well as the influence they had on country music, and music at large. These are the albums that should not be overlooked over the last 10 years of music.
Brent Amaker and the Rodeo, Caitlin Rose, Chris Stapleton, Cody Jinks, Emily Scott Robinson, First Aid Kit, Hellbound Glory, Jack Ingram, James McMurtry, Jason Eady, Jason Isbell, John Moreland, Joseph Huber, Kacey Musgraves, Kellie Pickler, Lindi Ortega, MIke and the Moonpies, Miranda Lambert, Olds Sleeper, Roger Alan Wade, Sarah Shook and the Disarmers, Slackeye Slim, Sturgill Simpson, Sunny Sweeney, Tami Neilson, The Mavericks, Turnpike Troubadours, Tyler Childers, Zephaniah OHora
It was recently announced that the daytime morning show Pickler & Ben featuring Emmy-winning television personality Ben Aaron, and country music singer Kellie Pickler, is being canceled. For two seasons, Pickler & Ben was a typical, but uplifting and positive-oriented daytime television show with guests from the entertainment world, self-help segments, cooking instruction, and other […]
While in the independent realm of country music, 2017 went down as a record year for quality projects, the mainstream was downright abysmal pretty much across the board for both songs and albums. There actually were quite a few pretty good songs, but most struggled to gain traction in the charts.
Kellie Pickler is at her best when she writes her own material, and when she makes it personal. That was at the heart of 100 Proof’s critical success. Pickler’s shattered upbringing have made for some excellent country music over the years, and her personal history is what inspires her latest song “If It Wasn’t For a Woman.”
A big issue with the Grand Ole Opry in recent years has been trying to get standing members to meet their performance obligations. Though the Opry loves to add high-profile names from country’s current radio stars, these performers tend to sign on to receive the distinction of being Opry members, but don’t actually want to play the appointed number of slots for membership.
"Cousin" Kenny Vaughan, Brandy Clark, Carrie Underwood, Chris Janson, Chris Scruggs, Chris Stapleton, Daryle Singletary, Elizabeth Cook, EmiSunshine, Gene Watson, Grand Ole Opry, Holly Williams, Jamey Johnson, Jim Lauderdale, Kacey Musgraves, Kellie Pickler, Mark Chesnutt, Miranda Lambert, Mo Pitney, Radney Foster, Rhonda Vincent, Rodney Crowell, Rosanne Cash, Sam Bush, William Michael Morgan
No, I’m not going soft, and I’m certainly not endorsing CMT or any of its programs or online properties. I can list dozens of other better alternatives to CMT for your country music and lifestyle needs, and the Viacom-owned entity would probably come near the bottom of the list of recommend media sources. If boiled down to one word, the way to describe CMT would be “filth.”
What’s so great about “Yo Bro” is that it’s deftly inclusive of both of the audio plagues country music finds itself suffering from at this very moment. As Bro-Country is trending downward, but still trying to hold on in its last dying gasps, and Metro-Politan is attempting to rise up and take its place, “You Bro” straddles the line between the two, offering an illustration of the absurdity of these “country” styles.
Starring none other than the country music punch line himself, Billy Ray Cyrus, CMT’s latest epiphany for solving their ratings and revenue tailspin is to cast Billy Ray as an Elvis impersonator named Vernon Brown, who appropriately, was a previous country music one hit wonder who then becomes the minister of a church outside of Nashville.
Independent music fans love to say “90% of what they play on the radio is crap!” Well then it would stand to reason that 10% actually has some value. And in the interest of pragmatism and inclusiveness that is vital to the charge of Saving Country Music, it is important to not ignore when Music Row and mainstream artists get it right, but to celebrate these moments.
Brett Eldredge, Bridges, Caitlyn Smith, Carrie Underwood, Dave Grohl, Dierks Bentley, Dirt, Eric Paslay, Everything To You, Florida Georgia Line, Garth Brooks, Jon Pardi, Kellie Pickler, Maddie & Tae, Man Against Machine, Mary Sarah, Riser, Something In The Water, The Grohl Sessions Vol. 1, The Mavericks, Tim McGraw, Zac Brown Band
In September of 2012, Blake Judd of JuddFilms brought a camera crew to the famous Cash Cabin Studio in Hendersonville, TN to shoot a pilot episode for a television series that has never been aired. The idea was to take well-known established artists, worthy undiscovered musicians and songwriters, and stick them all in Johnny Cash’s legendary cabin with an open bar, and set the camera’s rolling.
Amanda Isbell Shires, Col, Hellbound Glory, Jason Isbell, JD Wilkes, Jessica Wilkes, Joey Allcorn, John Anderson, John Carter Cash, Johnny Cash, Judd Films, Kellie Pickler, Leon Virgil Bowers, Leroy Powell, Leroy Virgil, Rico, Scott Icenogle, Shooter Jennings, Th' Legendary Shack Shakers, The Cash Cabin Studio, The Midnight Special
It has become patently obvious, especially over the last few years, that country music exists in two completely different worlds. One is the traditional world, where the way country music sounds is in close proximity to the way it has always sounded. And the other is Top 40 or mainstream country, which in the last few years has become the home for a hodgepodge of musical influences.
Some of your favorite music from the country world and beyond is going pink on September 30th to help spread awareness and raise money for those suffering from Breast Cancer as part of the music world’s contribution to Breast Cancer Awareness Month this October. Red Distribution and Gilda’s House are partnering to offer “Ten Bands / One Cause” limited edition pink vinyl releases.
Last year about this time, music periodicals left and right were falling over themselves to declare 2013 the “Year of the Woman” in country music. Music Row in Nashville may be dumb, but it’s not stupid. They saw the need to ramp up the female quotient to restore some diversity. Here in the summer of 2014, we’re very much seeing the results of those efforts. And unfortunately, it’s not very pretty.
Ashley Monroe, Brandy Clark, Brantley Gilbert, bro-country, Caitlin Rose, Carrie Underwood, Cole Swindell, Dierks Bentley, Eric Church, Florida Georgia Line, Holly Williams, Kacey Musgraves, Kellie Pickler, Lindi Ortega, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Raelynn
As for the music, the Red Fest lineup was built on good intentions. Big names like Florida Georgia Line, Tim McGraw, Kellie Pickler, and Lynyrd Skynyrd were billed alongside lesser-known bands from the local and national landscape like Hellbound Glory, The Whiskey Sisters, and Bri Bagwell. Instead of segregating independent and mainstream music, integrating it.
Bri Bagwell, Colt Ford, Earl Dibbles Jr., Florida Georgia Line, Granger Smith, Hellbound Glory, Imagine Dragons, Jeff Foxworthy, Kellie Pickler, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Parmalee, Red Fest, Review, Sundy Best, The Derailers, The Whiskey Sisters, Tim McGraw
Jake Worthington finished 2nd and has captured the hearts and imaginations of many traditional country fans by wearing a big cowboy hat, and singing Keith Whitley songs on the show every chance he got, along with songs from Waylon Jennings, Hank Williams Jr., and others throughout the competition.
American Idol, Big Machine Records, Blake Shelton, Carrie Underwood, Dan + Shay, Dia Frampton, Hank Williams Jr., Jake Worthington, Javier Colon, Jennifer Hudson, Keith Whitley, Kellie Pickler, Kelly Clarkson, Scotty McCreery, The Voice, Waylon Jennings
The Bobby Bones Show started on the WSIX flagship station being syndicated to 15 other stations across the country, and in less than a year is already up to a total of 50 stations. With his current position at WSIX and Clear Channel’s big nationally-focused plan for country radio, Bobby Bones isn’t just poised to become the Gerry House of the next generation, he’s poised to become the biggest DJ in the history of country music.
Andy Roddick, Austin, Bobby Bones, Chet Flippo, Clear Channel, Garth Brooks, Gerry House, Kellie Pickler, Lay Antebellum, Luke Bryan, Nashville, radio consolidation, Taylor Swift, The Bobby Bones Show, Tim McGraw, WSIX
But then here came a Patsy Cline tribute in the last quarter of the show and the whole sad sack theme of the night did a complete 360. There was LeAnn Rimes, singing a medley of Patsy Cline songs, and who better to do it than her? Since the beginning of LeAnn’s career, the Patsy comparisons have come pouring in.
Kellie Pickler’s 2012 album 100 Proof was like its own little country music revolution. This set the table for Kellie Pickler’s 2013 offering The Woman I Am to be one of the most anticipated releases this year. Kellie, willing to focus less on the commercial flop of 100 Proof and more on its critical success, kept much of the same personnel and approach in place for The Woman I Am, including the same producer Frank Liddell.
To say that Kellie Pickler’s personal life growing up was tumultuous would be a remark that resides somewhere between a gross understatement and a dramatic oversimplification. Kellie Pickler hasn’t seen her mother in over 15 years, since Kellie was roughly 11-years-old. Her father at last report was a fugitive wanted by the State of Florida. And that’s just where the story begins.
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.
Alan Jackson, Ashley Monroe, Dierks Bentley, Easton Corbin, Eric Church, Gary Allan, George Strait, Jamey Johnson, Joey + Rory, Kacey Musgraves, Kellie Pickler, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Pistol Annies, Reba, Taylor Swift, The Mavericks, Vince Gill, Zac Brown Band
There’s nothing I value more than a mainstream country music record that bucks all trends and is truly worth your ear. Enter Charlie Worsham and his debut album Rubberband that is being lauded by many critics and fans alike as a breath of fresh air for the mainstream radio dial. Rubberband is a very fun album that sucks you right in, but Charlie Worsham is no Kellie Pickler….