Let me set one thing straight before I dive into my recent conclusion: I love country music and have loved it ever since 2011 when my sister made me a mixed CD to blast in my sick 2007 Honda Accord.
Since then, my Spotify country playlist has accumulated 356 carefully vetted songs. As I write this, I have it on shuffle without a care in the world because I know I have everything that country music of the 2000s has to offer. Billy Currington told me people are crazy long before I realized it myself, Eric Church makes me need a drink in my hand, and Luke Bryan taught me why rain is, in fact, a good thing.
With that being said, I am all but DONE with new country music. Maybe it’s because I slowly overdosed myself with Dierks Bentley, Jason Aldean, and Kenny Chesney among others for so long, but I just don’t get the same satisfaction from what I’m hearing on my radio today. Tragically, it has become what the haters have been saying for so long: IT’S ALL THE SAME. I would be perfectly satisfied only having my 356 country songs for the rest of my life.
Give me any country song released over the last year or two and I guarantee I can give you at least one older song that’s better and delivers the same message. Today’s artists either reiterate some of country’s classics or just mass-produce the same basic country boy or country girl shit we’ve all heard before. It’s not the country I that I know and love anymore.
By no means am I saying that some new country can’t be enjoyable to listen to because of course there are exceptions. One of Thomas Rhett’s new jams, “Sixteen”, gets me every damn time. Old Dominion couldn’t make a bad song if their lives depended on it. But I’m just done trying to really keep tabs on the new stuff like I used to, it’s not worth it.
And with that, I’m closing the book on good country. I tried to do the impossible and decide for the world on the top 10 country songs of the genre’s revival. Not sure but I think I nailed it, and it will most likely never be cracked.
- Chicken Fried – Zac Brown Band (2008)
- Cruise – Florida Georgia Line (2012)
- Springsteen – Eric Church (2011)
- People are Crazy – Billy Currington (2008)
- Great Day to Be Alive – Travis Tritt (2000)
- Red Dirt Road – Brooks & Dunn (2003)
- What Was I Thinkin’ – Dierks Bentley (2003)
- Save a Horse (Ride a Cowboy) – Big & Rich (2004)
- American Kids – Kenny Chesney (2014)
- Play It Again – Luke Bryan (2013)
Go ahead, tell me I’m wrong (@DVConn), but the golden age of our generation of country music is over.