There’s nothing substantively different about Paltrow’s new single and all of the other “country and proud of it” songs that are out there. If it was recorded by any other new female singer that didn’t have an established public persona, it wouldn’t even raise an eyebrow.
The last few years of country music have so conclusively moved toward artifice that most country artists are already faking it. Alongside all the former pop stars and homegrown country artists who sound like them, it’s no surprise to see actual actors pulling off their country music efforts. The game has been moved to their turf, and they’ve got home court advantage.
So sure, she’s only acting. But aren’t they all?
Listen: Country Strong