Posts Tagged ‘country music’

“Country” Music Stars Attack Trump, Demand Gun Control…That Ain’t Country

August 7, 2019

kacey-musgraves-maren-morris-bonnaroo-2019-lineup

That whirring sound that you hear are the Country Music Stars who have passed on spinning in their graves.

FoxNews.com reports that

Kacey Musgraves called for Donald Trump and Sen. Mitch McConnell to pass gun control measures following the mass shootings in Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas, this weekend.

She tweeted early Monday, “Don’t you hear us, @realDonaldTrump? Don’t you hear our pain? You have the power to become a hero. Why don’t you take it?”

“For a man who clearly loves being well-liked, it’s indescribably mind-numbing to see him blatantly and murderously ignore doing ONE THING that would not only make people happy but would SAVE PEOPLE’S LIVES,” she added. “True leaders don’t stand back and watch the world burn.”

Musgraves, 30, went on to go back and forth with fans about gun control.

“I love keeping things about the music and usually stay out of politics publicly UNTIL it barrels past political party preference points and dangerously encroaches on fundamental human rights,” she wrote. “It’s then not political issue anymore. It’s a matter of heart. Of humanity. Of survival.”

She replied to a user who told her to “stick to singing,” writing, “Let me be clear – I’m from Texas. I grew up around hunting and guns. There’s a time and place for that and even self protection in ways..but this is different. The system is majorly flawed and NOBODY NEEDS ANYTHING REMOTELY AUTOMATIC. PERIOD. They’re mass killing machines.”

Her last tweet on the subject so far reads, “Hold your politicians accountable. Hold the president accountable. Start paying attention to actual ways we can make change happen. I promise I will too Love to anyone out there w/ fear & anxiety like me. Hold on to your loved ones & let’s all get thru this awful period alive.”

On Sunday, Musgraves urged the audience at Lollapalooza in Chicago to chant “somebody f—king do something” about “the s—t that’s happening in the last 24 hours — much less everything that’s happened in the last 200-and-f—king 15 days in America,” referencing the 250 mass shootings reported within 215 days. “So, I don’t know what the answer is, but obviously something has to be f—king done. Maybe somebody will hear us if we all yell together and say, ‘Somebody f—king do something!’”

Maren Morris, who was present at the mass shooting at a Las Vegas country music festival in October 2017, also spoke out, tweeting, “If I see one more politician use their “thoughts & prayers” tweet template they have backburnered for every mass shooting, I’m gonna be sick. We need common sense reform, not 280 meaningless characters. I love you, Texas & Ohio. No one deserves this.”

It is no surprise that today’s “Country Music” stars are Liberals.

The East Cost/Left Coast Power Brokers have done to Country Music exactly what they did to Classical Liberalism.

They have jettisoned Traditional American Faith and Values for a shallow hedonistic conflagration of drinkin’, cheatin’, partyin’, and Liberal Politics, changing an entire music genre into something that it never was and was never meant to be.

On this Mississippi August Morning, just a few miles away from Graceland, the home of Elvis Presley, I sit here reflecting on the influence which actual Country Music had on my young life, growing up with my Mother and Daddy.

Every family, to this day, has rituals that they observe like clockwork.

Our Saturday Night Ritual was to eat homemade hamburgers, spaghetti, or crockpot beans off of TV trays and watch Hee Haw, the syndicated country music variety show, out of Nashville, which starred Buck Owens, Roy Clark, and a “cast of thousands”.

The snotty folks up in the Northeast Corridor and Hollyweird never could figure out what made that “hick show”, that lasted 25 years, so popular.

After all, it was about traditional American Values, love of God and Country, respecting our American Musical Heritage, and featured talented performers who wrote songs, sang, played their own instruments, loved and appreciated their fans, and actually behaved like average Americans.

Plus, they had the good grace and common sense to keep their private lives, private.

Not these “Coca-Cola Cowboys and Cowgirls”.

At this time in our country’s history, when morality has become relative and ethics situational, we find our hearts crying out to hear something that will soothe our troubled souls.

Instead, we find synthesized, mass-produced Pop Music and “so-called” Country Music, actually more Pop Music, manufactured in New York City (pronounced like they do in the Pace Salsa Commercials), advocating meaningless one-night stands and encouraging the debasement of the human soul, instead of its ability to rise above any obstacle in its path that might hinder individual achievement.

With all of today’s over-produced, under-written Pop and Country-Pop Music flooding the airwaves of both broadcast and satellite radio, Americans my age wonder where all the great Country Songwriters and Performers have gone to?

What is happening to country music reflects a lot about the culture we live in. Artists who actually lived what they sung about like Loretta Lynn, George Jones, Merle Haggard, Tammy Wynette, The Statlers, Jim Ed Brown, Porter Waggoner, Hank Williams, Jr., Randy Travis, Jeannie C. Riley, and Elvis Presley have been replaced by fashion models and wannabe rappers and rock stars.

Please don’t get me wrong.

There are still Americans performing country music. Brad Paisley, Alan Jackson, Toby Keith, Reba McEntire, Martina McBride, Clint Black, Brooks and Dunn (who are back together and appearing with Reba in Las Vegas), and Rascal Flatts, among others, are still attempting to keep the spirit of Country Music alive.

However, in our culture of fast lives, fast food, and instant gratification, superficiality sells. That’s how we got stuck for 8 long years with Barack Hussein Obama (mm mmm mmmm).

It is easier and more profitable for a record company to sell someone who looks good and can sing a little, or to release a country music album made by a fading rock star, than it is for them to market someone who is unbelievably talented and writes their own songs, but who resembles your next door neighbor.

Remember the Bruce Springsteen and Van Morrison Country Music CD fiascos?

No? I don’t blame you. I wouldn’t admit it, either.

Can you imagine Hank Williams, Sr., Patsy Cline, or Buck Owens trying to get a record deal today?

I’m sorry Mr. Williams. Your vocalization is way too twangy and you drink way too much. “I Saw The Light”? What kind of song is that? A song about redemption? Get real. “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry”? Who Cares? You’re just not marketable.

Ms. Cline, we can’t use you. You look like somebody’s next door neighbor.

Mr. Owens, what is the “Bakersfield Sound” that you’re talking about? That won’t get any airtime in New York City. “Act Naturally”? That’s a song? Next thing you know, you’ll tell me that the Beatles will want to record it.

Now you know why Toby Keith formed his own record label.

The big recording companies like RCA Nashville and Arista are run like any other business. Executives are transferred from other cities and other divisions within the company and are judged to be successful by the amount of revenue they generate.

The decision was made several years ago to turn country music into pop music. Country Music started the transition from Kitty Wells to Taylor Swift and from George Jones to Kid Rock in an effort to claim a bigger share of the CD-buying public.

The disconnect arises when you take a genre that has traditionally sung about God, America, family, and heartache and try to make it about fashionistas, MTV, and shallow people with situational morality and ethics.

Just like the Liberal Politics of the outspoken harpies, the Dixie Chicks, it just doesn’t work here in America’s Heartland.

…As was proven on November 8, 2016.

As we say in Dixie,

That dog don’t hunt.

Alan Jackson and George Strait were prophets.

Nobody saw him running from sixteenth avenue
They never found the fingerprint or the weapon that was used
But someone killed country music, cut out its heart and soul
They got away with murder down on music row

The almighty dollar and the lust for worldwide fame
Slowly killed tradition and for that someone should hang
They all say not guilty, but the evidence will show
That murder was committed down on music row

For the steel guitars no longer cry and fiddles barely play
But drums and rock ‘n’ roll guitars are mixed up in your face
Old Hank wouldn’t have a chance on today’s radio
Since they committed murder, down on music row

They thought no one would miss it, once it was dead and gone
They said no one would buy them old drinking and cheating songs
Well I’ll still buy ’em
Well there ain’t no justice in it and the hard facts are cold
Murder’s been committed, down on music row

Oh, the steel guitars no longer cry and you can’t hear fiddles play
With drums and rock ‘n roll guitars mixed right up in your face
Why, the hag, he wouldn’t have a chance on today’s radio
Since they committed murder down on music row
Why, they even tell the posse to pack up and go back home
There’s been an awful murder down on music row

“Murder on Music Row”. George Strait/Alan Jackson, 2000

Please excuse my grammar,

But, what the East and Left Coast Liberals have done to “Country Music” today, ain’t just murder.

It’s a MASSACRE.

And, the opinion of those two Liberal Coca-Cola Cowgirls means as much to average Americans as Taylor Swift did to actual Country Music.

Until He Comes,

KJ

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“Murder on Music Row”: Lil Nas X’s Remix of “Old Town Road” and the Death of Country Music

April 8, 2019

Lil-Nas-X-Billy-Ray-Cyrus-Old-Town-Road-Remix-860x795Last night, the American Country Music Awards was on television, hosted for the 16 year in a row by the talented Reba McEntire.

I did not watch the awards program but hearing about it did get me to thinking about what has been going on in the field of Country Music for the last several years.

For example…

FoxNews.com reports that

John Rich is weighing in on the musical controversy surrounding “Old Town Road” and whether or not it deserves to live among country music’s biggest hits.

The country music star stopped by the Brian Kilmeade Show on Fox Nation on Friday and explained that while country music carries a certain feeling, ultimately it is up to the fans to decide if what they’re hearing warrants the genre’s stamp of approval.

“Let the fans decide. I mean, country music – I go back to guys like Johnny Cash when he showed up in Nashville, they said that is not country music,” the Big & Rich crooner told Kilmeade. “The guy made his records in Memphis where rock and roll was happening – he’s got his hair slicked back, he’s singing about sex, drugs and rock and roll. Johnny Cash, most hardcore lyrics anybody had ever heard – he’s not country – now Johnny Cash, a pillar of country music.”

When probed on whether or not he felt the smash was country-worthy, Rich noted that his concern is centered on the seriousness of an artist’s desire to be a country act, as opposed to the sound of a singular record.

“I don’t like people that try to piggyback on real country music,” said Rich. “So, I think if you really want to be a country artist, then be one – come to Nashville, write your music, really come up with something that’s fitting somewhere around country music.”

The Redneck Riviera Whisky owner continued: “Big & Rich is you know; – a lot of people said we weren’t country because we came out with ‘Save A Horse, [Ride A Cowboy],’ but I guaran-damn-tee you we’re country. Now they know it.”

Since being delisted from the country charts, Lil Nas X has pulled out all the stops to convince naysayers that his viral hit should be recognized by the industry.

Now, in a plea to the masses, Nas X has enlisted country music star Billy Ray Cyrus to lend his gritty sound to the rap/country crossover that juxtaposes Western and cowboy-themed imagery to a trap-style beat.

“I loved the song the first time I heard it. Country music fans decide what they like. Not critics or anyone else,” Cyrus told Rolling Stone in an interview published on Wednesday. “Waylon Jennings once told me every once in a while the industry outlaws someone because they’re different. Country music fans don’t need to be defined by critics. I’ve always said, don’t think inside the box, don’t think outside the box. Think like there is no box. So, I’m honored to collaborate with Lil Nas X on ‘Old Town Road.’”

However, since debuting at No. 19 on Billboard’s Hot Country chart nearly a month ago, the publication elected to strike the record from the charts, claiming that the catchy tune “does not embrace enough elements of today’s country music to chart in its current version.”

“Old Town Road” remains on rap/hip hop charts and reached 32 on the all-genre Hot 100 chart. The music video on YouTube features clips from the videogame “Red Dead Redemption 2,” and has received more than 15 million views, with 426,000 likes.

Shortly after the song was dropped, the rapper posted a headline of the news on his Instagram page, writing: “extremely disappointed,” along with a “sadface” emoji.

The song has since spawned dance videos and received a shout-out on social media from Justin Bieber. Texas Tech’s Final Four-bound basketball team even posted a video of the team dancing to the song in the locker room and country singer Jake Owen tweeted at the rapper, saying he wanted to jam with him.

Billboard got it right the first time: Lil Nas X AIN’T COUNTRY.

The East Cost/Left Coast Power Brokers have done to Country Music exactly what they did to Classical Liberalism.

They have jettisoned Traditional American Faith and Values for a shallow hedonistic conflagration of drinkin’, cheatin’, partyin’, and Liberal Politics, changing an entire music genre into something that it never was and was never meant to be.

On this Mississippi April Morning, just a few miles away from Graceland, the home of Elvis Presley, I sit here reflecting on the influence which actual Country Music had on my young life, growing up with my Mother and Daddy.

Every family, to this day, has rituals that they observe like clockwork.

Our Saturday Night Ritual was to eat homemade hamburgers, spaghetti, or crockpot beans off of TV trays and watch Hee Haw, the syndicated country music variety show, out of Nashville, which starred Buck Owens, Roy Clark, and a “cast of thousands”.

The snotty folks up in the Northeast Corridor and Hollyweird never could figure out what made that “hick show”, that lasted 25 years, so popular.

After all, it was about traditional American Values, love of God and Country, respecting our American Musical Heritage, and featured talented performers who wrote songs, sang, played their own instruments, loved and appreciated their fans, and actually behaved like average Americans.

Plus, they had the good grace and common sense to keep their private lives, private.

A rapper and the father of a Former Disney Star who has been around more times than the turnstiles at Disney World are hardly iconic examples of Country Music performers.

At this time in our country’s history, when morality has become relative and ethics situational, we find our hearts crying out to hear something that will soothe our troubled souls.

Instead, we find synthesized, mass-produced Pop Music and “so-called” Country Music, actually more Pop Music, manufactured in New York City (pronounced like they do in the Pace Salsa Commercials), advocating meaningless one-night stands and encouraging the debasement of the human soul, instead of its ability to rise above any obstacle in its path that might hinder individual achievement.

With all of today’s over-produced, under-written Pop and Country-Pop Music flooding the airwaves of both broadcast and satellite radio, Americans my age wonder where all the great Country Songwriters and Performers have gone to?

What is happening to country music reflects a lot about the culture we live in. Artists who actually lived what they sung about like Loretta Lynn, George Jones, Merle Haggard, Tammy Wynette, The Statlers, Jim Ed Brown, Porter Waggoner, Hank Williams, Jr., Randy Travis, Jeannie C. Riley, and Elvis Presley have been replaced by fashion models and wannabe rappers and rock stars.

Please don’t get me wrong.

There are still Americans performing country music. Brad Paisley, Alan Jackson, Toby Keith, Reba McEntire, Martina McBride, Clint Black, Brooks and Dunn (who are back together and appearing with Reba in Las Vegas), and Rascal Flatts, among others, are still attempting to keep the spirit of Country Music alive.

However, in our culture of fast lives, fast food, and instant gratification, superficiality sells. That’s how we got stuck for 8 long years with Barack Hussein Obama (mm mmm mmmm).

It is easier and more profitable for a record company to sell someone who looks good and can sing a little, or to release a country music album made by a fading rock star, than it is for them to market someone who is unbelievably talented and writes their own songs, but who resembles your next door neighbor.

Remember the Bruce Springsteen and Van Morrison Country Music CD fiascos?

No? I don’t blame you. I wouldn’t admit it, either.

Can you imagine Hank Williams, Sr., Patsy Cline, or Buck Owens trying to get a record deal today?

I’m sorry Mr. Williams. Your vocalization is way too twangy and you drink way too much. “I Saw The Light”? What kind of song is that? A song about redemption? Get real. “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry”? Who Cares? You’re just not marketable.

Ms. Cline, we can’t use you. You look like somebody’s next door neighbor.

Mr. Owens, what is the “Bakersfield Sound” that you’re talking about? That won’t get any airtime in New York City. “Act Naturally”? That’s a song? Next thing you know, you’ll tell me that the Beatles will want to record it.

Now you know why Toby Keith formed his own record label.

The big recording companies like RCA Nashville and Arista are run like any other business. Executives are transferred from other cities and other divisions within the company and are judged to be successful by the amount of revenue they generate.

The decision was made several years ago to turn country music into pop music. Country Music started the transition from Kitty Wells to Taylor Swift and from George Jones to Kid Rock in an effort to claim a bigger share of the CD-buying public.

The disconnect arises when you take a genre that has traditionally sung about God, America, family, and heartache and try to make it about fashionistas, MTV, and shallow people with situational morality and ethics.

Just like the Liberal Politics of the outspoken harpies, the Dixie Chicks, it just doesn’t work here in America’s Heartland.

…As was proven on November 8, 2016.

As we say in Dixie,

That dog don’t hunt.

Alan Jackson and George Strait were prophets.

Nobody saw him running from sixteenth avenue
They never found the fingerprint or the weapon that was used
But someone killed country music, cut out its heart and soul
They got away with murder down on music row

The almighty dollar and the lust for worldwide fame
Slowly killed tradition and for that someone should hang
They all say not guilty, but the evidence will show
That murder was committed down on music row

For the steel guitars no longer cry and fiddles barely play
But drums and rock ‘n’ roll guitars are mixed up in your face
Old Hank wouldn’t have a chance on today’s radio
Since they committed murder, down on music row

They thought no one would miss it, once it was dead and gone
They said no one would buy them old drinking and cheating songs
Well I’ll still buy ’em
Well there ain’t no justice in it and the hard facts are cold
Murder’s been committed, down on music row

Oh, the steel guitars no longer cry and you can’t hear fiddles play
With drums and rock ‘n roll guitars mixed right up in your face
Why, the hag, he wouldn’t have a chance on today’s radio
Since they committed murder down on music row
Why, they even tell the posse to pack up and go back home
There’s been an awful murder down on music row

“Murder on Music Row”. George Strait/Alan Jackson, 2000

Please excuse my grammar,

But, what the East and Left Coast Liberals have done to “Country Music” today, ain’t just murder.

It’s a MASSACRE.

Until He Comes,

KJ

Why Country Music Isn’t “Country Music” Anymore

March 4, 2018

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Sometimes…change is good.

Sometimes…it isn’t.

FoxNews.com’s Entertainment Division reported earlier this week that

On Wednesday, the former Arkansas governor and GOP presidential candidate was announced as a new board member of the charitable arm of the group that runs the annual CMA Awards and CMA Festival.

But prominent music industry leaders swiftly criticized Huckabee’s appointment, including some who singled out his support for gun rights and traditional family values.

In his resignation letter to the CMA Foundation, Huckabee called his critics bullies, but said he was resigning to end an “unnecessary distraction” for the foundation.

“If the industry doesn’t want people of faith or who hold conservative and traditional political views to buy tickets and music, they should be forthcoming and say it,” Huckabee wrote. “Surely neither the artists or the business people of the industry want that.”

Huckabee also sounded a note of defiance on Twitter on Thursday night.

The 51st Annual CMA Awards, held in November, included numerous jabs at President Donald Trump.

The Former Governor of the great state of Arkansas is exactly right.

The East Cost/Left Coast Power Brokers have done to Country Music exactly what they did to Classical Liberalism.

They have jettisoned Traditional American Faith and Values for a shallow hedonistic conflagration of drinkin’, cheatin’, partyin’, and Liberal Politics, changing an entire music genre into something that it never was and was never meant to be.

On this Mississippi March Morning, just a few miles away from Graceland, the home of Elvis Presley, I sit here reflecting on the influence which actual Country Music had on my young life, growing up with my Mother and Daddy.

Every family, to this day, has rituals that they observe like clockwork.

Our Saturday Night Ritual was to eat homemade hamburgers, spaghetti, or crockpot beans off of TV trays and watch Hee Haw, the syndicated country music variety show, out of Nashville, which starred Buck Owens, Roy Clark, and a “cast of thousands”.

The snotty folks up in the Northeast Corridor and Hollyweird never could figure out what made that “hick show”, that lasted 25 years, so popular.

After all, it was about traditional American Values, love of God and Country, respecting our American Musical Heritage, and featured talented performers who wrote songs, sang, played their own instruments, loved and appreciated their fans, and actually behaved like average Americans.

Plus, they had the good grace and common sense to keep their private lives, private.

At this time in our country’s history, when morality has become relative and ethics situational, we find our hearts crying out to hear something that will soothe our troubled souls.

Instead, we find synthesized, mass-produced Pop Music and “so-called” Country Music, actually more Pop Music, manufactured in New York City (pronounced like they do in the Pace Salsa Commercials), advocating meaningless one-night stands and encouraging the debasement of the human soul, instead of its ability to rise above any obstacle in its path that might hinder individual achievement.

With all of today’s over-produced, under-written Pop and Country-Pop Music flooding the airwaves of both broadcast and satellite radio, Americans my age wonder where all the great Country Songwriters and Performers have gone to?

What is happening to country music reflects a lot about the culture we live in. Artists who actually lived what they sung about like Loretta Lynn, George Jones, Merle Haggard, Tammy Wynette, The Statlers, Jim Ed Brown, Porter Waggoner, Hank Williams, Jr., Randy Travis, Jeannie C. Riley, and Elvis Presley have been replaced by fashion models and wannabe rock stars.

Please don’t get me wrong.

There are still Americans performing country music. Brad Paisley, Alan Jackson, Toby Keith, Reba, Martina McBride, Clint Black, Brooks and Dunn (who are back together and appearing with Reba in Las Vegas), Rascal Flatts, among others, are still attempting to keep the spirit of Country Music alive.

However, in our culture of fast lives, fast food, and instant gratification, superficiality sells. That’s how we got stuck for 8 long years with Barack Hussein Obama (mm mmm mmmm).

It is easier and more profitable for a record company to sell someone who looks good and can sing a little, or to release a country music album made by a fading rock star, than it is for them to market someone who is unbelievably talented and writes their own songs, but who resembles your next door neighbor.

Remember the Bruce Springsteen and Van Morrison Country Music CD fiascos?

No? I don’t blame you. I wouldn’t admit it, either.

Can you imagine Hank Williams, Sr., Patsy Cline, or Buck Owens trying to get a record deal today?

I’m sorry Mr. Williams. Your vocalization is way too twangy and you drink way too much. “I Saw The Light”? What kind of song is that? A song about redemption? Get real. “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry”? Who Cares? You’re just not marketable.

Ms. Cline, we can’t use you. You look like somebody’s next door neighbor.

Mr. Owens, what is the “Bakersfield sound” that you’re talking about? That won’t get any airtime in New York City. “Act Naturally”? That’s a song? Next thing you know, you’ll tell me that the Beatles will want to record it.

Now you know why Toby Keith formed his own record label.

The big recording companies like RCA Nashville and Arista are run like any other business. Executives are transferred from other cities and other divisions within the company and are judged to be successful by the amount of revenue they generate. The decision was made several years ago to turn country music into pop music. Country Music started the transition from Kitty Wells to Taylor Swift and from George Jones to Kid Rock in an effort to claim a bigger share of the CD-buying public. The disconnect arises when you take a genre that has traditionally sung about God, America, family, and heartache and try to make it about fashionistas, MTV, and shallow people with situational morality and ethics.

Just like the Liberal Politics of the outspoken harpies, the Dixie Chicks, it just doesn’t work here in America’s Heartland.

…As was proven on November 8, 2016.

As we say in Dixie,

That dog don’t hunt.

Alan Jackson and George Strait were prophets.

Nobody saw him running from sixteenth avenue
They never found the fingerprint or the weapon that was used
But someone killed country music, cut out its heart and soul
They got away with murder down on music row

The almighty dollar and the lust for worldwide fame
Slowly killed tradition and for that someone should hang
They all say not guilty, but the evidence will show
That murder was committed down on music row

For the steel guitars no longer cry and fiddles barely play
But drums and rock ‘n’ roll guitars are mixed up in your face
Old Hank wouldn’t have a chance on today’s radio
Since they committed murder, down on music row

They thought no one would miss it, once it was dead and gone
They said no one would buy them old drinking and cheating songs
Well I’ll still buy ’em
Well there ain’t no justice in it and the hard facts are cold
Murder’s been committed, down on music row

Oh, the steel guitars no longer cry and you can’t hear fiddles play
With drums and rock ‘n roll guitars mixed right up in your face
Why, the hag, he wouldn’t have a chance on today’s radio
Since they committed murder down on music row
Why, they even tell the posse to pack up and go back home
There’s been an awful murder down on music row

“Murder on Music Row”. George Strait/Alan Jackson, 2000

Please excuse my grammar,

But, what the East and Left Coast Liberals have done to “Country Music” today, ain’t just murder.

It’s a MASSACRE.

Until He Comes,

KJ

The Death of Country Music

November 22, 2014

Hee HawNobody saw him running from sixteenth avenue
They never found the fingerprint or the weapon that was used
But someone killed country music, cut out its heart and soul
They got away with murder down on music row

The almighty dollar and the lust for worldwide fame
Slowly killed tradition and for that someone should hang
They all say not guilty, but the evidence will show
That murder was committed down on music row

For the steel guitars no longer cry and fiddles barely play
But drums and rock ‘n’ roll guitars are mixed up in your face
Old Hank wouldn’t have a chance on today’s radio
Since they committed murder, down on music row

They thought no one would miss it, once it was dead and gone
They said no one would buy them old drinking and cheating songs
Well I’ll still buy ’em
Well there ain’t no justice in it and the hard facts are cold
Murder’s been committed, down on music row

Oh, the steel guitars no longer cry and you can’t hear fiddles play
With drums and rock ‘n roll guitars mixed right up in your face
Why, the hag, he wouldn’t have a chance on today’s radio
Since they committed murder down on music row
Why, they even tell the posse to pack up and go back home
There’s been an awful murder down on music row

“Murder on Music Row”. George Strait/Alan Jackson, 2000

On this Saturday Morning, right across  Stateline Road, from the home of Elvis Presley,Memphis, Tennessee in Northwest Mississippi, I sit here reflecting on Saturday nights, growing up with my Mother and Daddy.

Every family, to this day, have rituals that they observe like clockwork.

Our Saturday Night Ritual was to eat homemade hamburgers, spaghetti, or crockpot beans off of TV trays and watch Hee Haw, the syndicated country music variety show, out of Nashville, which starred Buck Owens, Roy Clark, and a “cast of thousands”.

The snotty folks up in the Northeast Corridor never could figure out what made that “hick show”, that lasted 25 years,  so popular.

After all, it was about traditional American Values, love of God and Country, respecting our American Musical Heritage, and featuring talented performers who wrote songs, sang, played their own instruments, loved and appreciated their fans, and actually behaved like average Americans.

Plus, they had the good grace and common sense to keep their private lives, private.

This week foxnews.com reported that…

The country star opens up about his past, present and future in an interview with Entertainment Tonight’s Nischelle Turner that rivals ABC’s country soap “Nashville” with its real-life drama. Herndon discussed everything from his former drug use, his failed marriages and his current relationship.

“I have an awesome relationship that I’ve been in for a good number of years,” Herndon tells ET in a new sit-down airing Thursday. “[I] love him very much and he loves me.”

Married twice before, Herndon reveals that both of his ex-wives were “absolutely” aware of his sexuality.

“I had a lot of people around me that I trusted at a time and I was like,’Hey, you know this about me but the world doesn’t. So I’m gonna need to call on your services for a little while,'” he confessed. “It was unfortunate that I had to do that, but I felt that’s what I had to do to have my career. Standing on some pretty solid legs today, so I get to tell my truth today.”

The news brings new meaning to the singer’s latest album, “Lies I Told Myself,” which was released in 2013. Today, Herndon reveals that the biggest lie he told himself is “that I couldn’t be gay in country music.”

“I’ve dreamed about being in country music since I was 6 years old,” he said. “It’s my life, it’s what I do, it’s who I am, and I went to great lengths to cover up that fact to be to be a country star.”

Rumors surrounding Herndon’s sexuality first surfaced back in 1995, when an undercover male police officer alleged that the star exposed himself in a park.

“I wish I had really great recall or memory about that,” Herndon said of the allegation. “I think I had been up for like 6 days doing drugs the night and the day was really a huge blur for me.”

Now fully clean and sober, Herndon is looking forward to a future with his partner of five years, joking with ET that he hoped a proposal might follow his big reveal. “God, I’m hoping he asks me right after this interview!” he said.

“I do want children one day, you know,” he added. “I do want to be married one day.”

But for now, Herndon says he’s thrilled to be seeing increasing levels of acceptance in Nashville.

“Traditionally in country music, we don’t see a lot of support for the LGBT community, but that’s changing so much,” he said. “Nashville is changing so much. I mean my goodness… Kacey Musgraves won Song of the Year for [the lyrics] ‘follow your arrow, wherever it points’ and two amazing songwriters that happened to be gay wrote that song.”

Herndon continued, “It gives me a lot of hope that that Nashville is ready for this. I get to be free today. I’m born again today, and I feel like I’m not gonna have any trouble sleeping tonight.”

Herndon’s story inspired fellow country singer Billy Gilman to come out as well.

“It was in that moment that I knew that I’d rather it be from me, than you reading it from somewhere else,” Gilman said in a YouTube video Thursday.

Actually, boys, y’all could have kept your lust for hairy-legged gents to yourselves. America ain’t New York City.

What is happening to country music reflects a lot about the culture we live in.   Artists who actually lived what they sung about like Loretta Lynn, George Jones, Merle Haggard, Tammy Wynette, The Statlers, Jim Ed Brown, Porter Waggoner, Bocephus, Randy Travis, Jeannie C. Riley, and Elvis Presley have been replaced by fashion model wannabes and burned-out rock stars.

Please don’t get me wrong.  There is still a lot of great talent in country music.  Brad Paisley, Alan Jackson, the Zac Brown Band, Toby Keith, Reba McEntire, Martina McBride, Clint Black, Carrie Underwood, and Rascal Flatts, among others, are very talented performers.

However, in our culture of fast lives, fast food, and instant gratification, superficiality sells.  That’s how we got stuck with Barack Hussein Obama (mm mmm mmmm).

It is easier and more profitable for a record company to sell someone who looks good and can sing a little, or release a country music album made by a fading rock star, than it is for them to market someone who is unbelievably talented and writes their own songs, but resembles your next door neighbor.

Remember the Kid Rock, Bruce Springsteen, and Van Morrison country music CD fiascos?  No?  I don’t blame you.  I wouldn’t admit it, either.

Can you imagine Hank Williams, Sr., Patsy Cline, or Buck Owens trying to get a record deal today?

I’m sorry Mr. Williams.  Your vocalization is way too twangy and you drink way too much.  “I Saw The Light”?  What kind of song is that?  A song about redemption?  Get real.  “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry”?  Who Cares?  You’re just not marketable.

Miss Cline, we can’t use you.  You look like somebody’s next door neighbor.

Mr. Owens, what is the “Bakersfield Sound” that you’re talking about?  That won’t get any airtime in New York City.   “Act Naturally”?  That’s a song?  Next thing you know, you’ll tell me that the Beatles will want to record it.

Now you know why Toby Keith formed his own record label. 

The big recording companies like RCA Nashville and Arista are run like any other business.  Executives are transferred from other cities and other divisions within the company and are judged to be successful by the amount of revenue they generate.  The decision was made several years ago to turn country music into pop music.  Country music started the transition from Kitty Wells to Miranda Lambert and from George Jones to Kid Rock in an effort to claim a bigger share of the CD-buying public.  The disconnect arises when you take a genre that has traditionally sung  about God, America, family, and heartache and try to make it about fashionistas, MTV, and shallow people with situational morality and ethics. 

That dog don’t hunt.

Allow me to close with this video from Alan Jackson and George Strait, of the song featured at the beginning of today’s blog.  As you read earlier, they expressed the situation much more eloquently than I can.

[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgiILl_F7O8]

Until He Comes,

KJ