Worst Country Songs That Were Big Hits Poll – Response


Recently, The Boot ran
a Facebook poll that asked readers what the worst country hits were. I had a
look through some of the answers and some were expected, and some totally
surprised me, so I thought I’d share this list with you and a few of my
comments. Here’s the top 10 counting down.

10. Shania Twain –
That Don’t Impress Me Much

I get this. One of the main things that underlies country
fans’ criticisms of songs is the lack of ‘country’ they feel is present. Though
I loved this song as a kid growing up, it was because of its poppiness, not
because it was a great country song. Its bouncy chirpiness and connections to
novelties probably didn’t do a lot for its popularity with die-hard country
fans either.

9. Jason Aldean –
Dirt Road Anthem

I can see why people were annoyed by this one. I personally
found it all kinds of oddness, despite the fact it was a huge hit. Brantley
Gilbert is a talented writer but I actually preferred his remixed version,
although it was even further from ‘country’ than Jason’s. The slow rap is not a

8. Sugarland – Stuck
Like Glue

WHAT EVEN THE WHAT. I love this song. A lot. It is so catchy
and the video is probably one of my all-time favorite country music videos.
It’s hysterical and I just don’t understand how anyone can truly hate this
song. Sure, they might be annoyed by its catchiness, but I like to call those
people spoilsports and the ‘cool kids’ who pretend not to love ‘Call Me Maybe’
by Carly Rae Jepsen but rock out to it in the shower. However, this song is
far, far better than that and there is no excuse whatsoever for not loving it.


Continue ReadingWorst Country Songs That Were Big Hits Poll – Response

The Cadillac Black Storm Nashville And Put The Rock Back Into Country [ARTIST FEATURE]


If you haven’t yet heard of The Cadillac Black, you have a
lot of catching up to do. They’re already making huge waves in Nashville with
their unique brand of Southern rock, and fans in the likes of Eric Church and
Dierks Bentley, both of whom they’ve toured with. In addition, their first ever
show was opening up for ZZ Top, and they’ve also toured with Lynyrd Skynyrd
(“it certainly has helped us open some doors”), and they have Billy Gibbon’s
cell phone number, to name but a few. If that isn’t enough, no less than three
of the songs from their self-titled debut album were featured on a recent
episode of ABC’s ‘Nashville’ (including the cover of Ring of Fire that
character Scarlett sang on). Their tracks have also been featured on The
Vampire Diaries, Hart of Dixie and CSI Miami, not to mention a host of others.

Yet The Cadillac Black isn’t a five-piece supergroup, but
three ordinary guys from Nashville who accidentally became a three-piece and
found a way to make it work, even with such a wide host of instruments utilised
in their music. These clearly talented musicians have only been together for
just over a year, but Kelby Ray, Jaren Johnston and Neil Mason (described by
Jaren as a ‘long-haired hippie drummer’) have already built up a great
reputation on the live circuit and their support from such big artists and
mainstream TV shows mean they have a big year ahead that is bound to see them
every success. But it’s not just about their
music. Jaren, the lead singer and guitarist, produced Dierks Bentley’s ‘Country
& Cold Cans’ EP, and he has penned tracks for Dierks, Kenny Chesney, Sara
Evans, Keith Urban (the #1 hit ‘You Gonna Fly’) and Tim McGraw. He’s also been
nominated for Music Row Magazine’s 2012 Breakthrough Songwriter of the Year.
All this means you’re in safe hands when choosing to listen to such an already
accomplished band, so early in their career.

I interviewed Jaren and I loved how genuine and real he came
across as. The three band members grew up together in Nashville and they’ve
been friends as long as they can remember, playing together in a very organic
process. In an industry where so much is manufactured, it doesn’t get much
better than this. In fact, their album was thrown together totally organically
in a couple of days at Sound Emporium in Nashville, recorded live with their
engineer Ryan Gore. Jaren grew up watching his dad play drums at the Grand Ole
Opry, and even saw Garth Brooks play the legendary stage for the first time –
so it was only natural that his musical influences ranged from those popular
during the 1990s, to more traditional artists such as Keith Whitley (inspired
by his parents) to the classics such as Willie. But the music Jaren actually
owned strayed a little. “My first cassette tapes were Lynyrd Skynyrd's greatest
hits and Metallica's "And Justice For All"… I think I was like
thirteen or something. I never thought about that before this band but that
honestly explains our sound almost to the T!” Jaren also cites bands such as
Rage Against The Machine, Tom Petty, Nirvana and the Rolling Stones as huge
influences on The Cadillac Black’s music, among others.


Continue ReadingThe Cadillac Black Storm Nashville And Put The Rock Back Into Country [ARTIST FEATURE]

Blake Shelton Acts Like A ‘Dumbass’ For A PR Nightmare


So, the news broke
a couple of days ago Blake
Shelton made some disparaging comments about 'classic country' fans
. From
his updated GAC Backstory that originally aired in December, Blake stated: “If I am “Male Vocalist of
the Year” that must mean that I’m one of those people now that gets to decide
if it moves forward and if it moves on. Country music has to evolve in order to
survive. Nobody
wants to listen to their grandpa’s music. And I don’t care how many of these
old farts around Nashville going, “My God, that ain’t country!” Well
that’s because you don’t buy records anymore, jackass. The
kids do, and they don’t
want to buy the music you were buying.” Since this, radio
stations have been rumored to have removed his songs from their rota, particularly his new single
'Sure Be Cool If You Did' which was only released on January 1st. In addition,
there has been outcry with young and old country fans alike, who have not taken
kindly to his words. I have a few problems with it too. Blake has a history on
Twitter of running his mouth and saying things that have offended or upset
people. However, up until now the majority of people have been fine with it
(including me) because often it was amusing, light-hearted, and all in good
fun. This was not.

It doesn't take a
genius to figure out that country music is hugely respecting of tradition and
constructs itself around affiliations and references to the past. Some of the
biggest stars in its history have reinvented the genre with a newer, more
modern sound, but they have always kept something of the new, reminding people
where they came from and always laying down the red carpet, literally and
metaphorically, for the greats that came before them. The traditional nature of
country music demands a respect for the legends in the way that the elder and
head of a family would demand respect. In line with this, Blake has often
performed covers of older songs on stage. For Blake to suddenly turn round and
disrespect those who came before him is rude, ungrateful and unnecessary.
Country music is what it is because of them, and where was he to gain by
bad-mouthing them?


Continue ReadingBlake Shelton Acts Like A ‘Dumbass’ For A PR Nightmare

‘Nashville’, Episode 10 – RECAP


The drama continued last week with episode 10 of 22 airing
on our screens, so naturally as with any other week, I’m on hand to recap
everything for you. It’s like I’m doing a service to humanity.

In Episode 10 Rayna and Juliette begin their tour together,
‘Red Lips And White Lies’. They’ve been doing small shows, and are about to do
their first big show, where all the creases should have been ironed out. After
abandoning her ‘official’ wedding, Juliette is trying to divorce Sean, but he
wants an annulment instead. Juliette is furious as she doesn’t want to take
back that they were married, however briefly, and wants it to stand as a
mistake that she can learn from. However, after a confrontation between the two
of them where Sean states that he only wants to be married once (no doubt due
to his faith), Juliette retracts her petition for divorce and agrees to the
annulment. She apologies and explains her actions but Sean still condemns her,
saying that now he knew her he didn’t like her at all, in so many words.
Considering the person Juliette is, I have a feeling this is going to hit her
hard in the coming episodes, and I wouldn’t be surprised if she started to

Meanwhile Rayna is struggling with going out on her first
tour since losing Deacon as her guitar player. She isn’t happy with the performances
of the first two guitar players, and after firing one and the other quitting,
she eventually convinces her producer Liam to join them for a few shows. He is
begrudging, so as a gift she buys him a pair of expensive cowboy boots. He
tells her that it’s not his thing, and that he isn’t Deacon, or anything like
him, and that she is scared of going out on stage and having things feel
differently without Deacon.  Rayna is
also having difficulties adjusting in her marriage and initially doesn’t want
to join Teddy and her daughters for the night of the election. After all things
considered, she goes to surprise them, to witness Teddy winning the election.
Prior to this it was deemed to be neck-and-neck between Teddy and Coleman, and
it is suspected that Lamar may have bought some votes against Teddy’s will in
order to get him to win. I can see this blowing up in weeks to come.


Continue Reading‘Nashville’, Episode 10 – RECAP

Who Will Taylor Swift Date Next? I Make Some Predictions…


However trivial it might be, I thought this would be a fun
thing to do, as in my view there tends to be a pattern with who Taylor Swift
dates. Think of it as a puzzle/guessing game.

I know some you will comment saying “I don’t care, she’s not
even country, I wish she’d stop dating everyone and writing about everyone she
dates and just go be pop.” These comments crop up every time I write about
Taylor Swift and go ahead if you’d also like to post them here because well,
free speech and all (I know comments are moderated but we publish all that
aren’t abusive or spam). But I thought it’d be good to enter into the spirit of
fun, and hopefully some of this will amuse you if nothing else.

I have asked on Twitter and also some of my friends, so I
cannot take credit for coming up with all of these predictions. Mass credit to
everyone I have had this conversation with. Here we go.

Michael J. Fox’s Son.

Prince Harry. I’m
alarmed by this suggestion but it was a suggestion all the same, and judging by
Taylor’s closeness to the Kennedy’s, she likes a bit of a famous, powerful
family… Prince Harry appears to have that down pretty well. However he
doesn’t really associate with the music world as far as I know and is often out
fighting as part of the British Army, so maybe not.

Justin Bieber.
Taylor’s historically been friends with Justin, and now Selena Gomez appears to
be out the picture and Justin is of legal age, maybe Taylor will make her move.

Ed Sheeran. The
two were romantically linked in 2012 before Taylor became involved with Harry
Styles, so considering Ed is about to embark on the Red Tour with Taylor this
year, and has been quoted as saying he’s going to write his album while out on
the road, I’d say this is pretty likely. They’ll write songs together, record
songs together, spend time together, and Taylor has a history with musicians,
let’s face it. She dated Joe Jonas in 2008, Harry Styles in 2012 and John Mayer
in 2009, and even sang on John’s song ‘Half Of My Heart’.  This seems like a given to me.


Continue ReadingWho Will Taylor Swift Date Next? I Make Some Predictions…

‘Nashville’ Episode 9 – RECAP


Nashville is back! Hooray! The hit TV show graced our
screens once again last Wednesday, and oh were we glad to see it. A month is a
long time in a love affair with a fictional narrative. Am I right? Either way,
tonight sees episode 10 pick up where 9 left off, and thus we need a recap of 9,
naturally. Here we go.

Well, let’s start with the big news! Juliette gets married!
And she and the good, Christian boy Sean elope, and appear to have sex for the
first time in the back of a cab. How very Gossip
. Juliette wants to keep it quiet, but, like all the news in this town,
it gets out to Sean’s family, who aren’t too pleased but decide to arrange a
church wedding, to authorize it before God. Under pressure from Sean’s
overbearing mother who hates her, Juliette agrees to invite her mother, who is
still in rehab. Sean then organizes for them both to meet with Jolene but
Juliette decides to go alone. Her mother seems much more normal, but she
questions Juliette’s choice to get married so quickly, talking about the hole
inside both of them that cannot be filled. Juliette gets angry and storms off.
The wedding goes ahead as planned, but the end of the episode reveals her in
her beautiful wedding dress in the wedding car, being driven to… to… the
airport. Not the church, where Sean and all their guests are waiting. Oh dear.

Alongside this, the news we’ve all being talking about –
Rayna and Juliette’s tour. Rayna wants desperately to release her new album she’s
been working on with Liam, but the popularity of ‘Wrong Song’ calls for a
studio version, and the tour will help both of them rekindle their career. In
addition, she just wants to get away from Teddy and the failing of her
marriage, which, if we remember, was in tatters after she found out about Teddy’s
lying, and Peggy tried to kill herself. While Peggy is heard to be fine, Rayna
decides to start the tour earlier than scheduled, in a few days, and tells
Teddy she’s taking the girls with her. He is furious and tells Tandy in his
distress, who joins Lamar in confronting Rayna at her house. Lamar threatens to
“tell Maddie who her real father is” at which point Rayna kicks him out. She
then comes to tell Teddy at his work, where Lamar also is, and upon hearing
what Lamar has said Teddy explodes and really yells at Lamar, as he has always
known who Maddie’s real father is (Deacon, surely? I swear I predicted this!). While
Rayna is very grateful, she later says she loves Teddy, but she knows neither
of them are happy. She decides to go out on tour but leave the girls in school,
seeing them when she can, as she and Teddy need the space to figure things out.


Continue Reading‘Nashville’ Episode 9 – RECAP

Golden Globe Awards… Let’s (Not) Pan To Taylor Swift


If you saw the title
of my recent article on the People’s Choice Awards
, you’ll appreciate my
awesome pun skill(z) by the time you’ve finished reading THIS article.

So the Golden Globes were last night. Both Keith Urban and
the aforementioned Taylor Swift were up for the same award of ‘Best Original
Song – Movie’. Neither won, and instead it was given to Adele for ‘Skyfall’,
which I didn’t mind as it’s a good song and Adele is a fantastic performer. If
it had stopped there, I wouldn’t have bothered writing this article, and that
would have been that. Except, this happened:


Tina Fey (how gorgeous was her dress?!) and Amy Poehler were
the night’s hosts, and after they both lost their category they proceeded to ‘get
drunk’ on stage. Of course the banter is amusing and everyone’s having a good
time, until, out of the blue, Tina shouts “and you know what, Taylor Swift… you
stay away from Michael J. Fox’s son!”


Continue ReadingGolden Globe Awards… Let’s (Not) Pan To Taylor Swift