Actively writing single reviews again has me also looking at the radio charts again. What a bleak landscape of interchangeable singers and songs! I can’t remember things ever being this generic and bland. We flirted with it back in the Kellie Coffey days, but the bottom didn’t fall out.
Today, is there even a bottom? An old friend of mine listened to country radio for the first time in presumably years and asked, “Am I crazy, or is everyone getting drunk on country radio?”
He’s not crazy. What can we do to fix this?
Today’s Top Five asks: What five songs would you immediately put in heavy rotation on country radio?
They can already be singles, or could be unreleased songs that you think should be singles, but they should be current enough to be featured on an artist’s most recent album.
Here’s my top five:
- Old Crow Medicine Show, “Mean Enough World”
- Trisha Yearwood, “You Can’t Trust the Weatherman”
- Jason Isbell, “Songs that She Sang in the Shower”
- Nickel Creek, “You Don’t Know What’s Going On”
- Reba McEntire, “Just Like Them Horses”
“Save Your Breath”
Written by Josh Dorr and Jason Mizelle
An fairly egregious example of subject-verb disagreement in the start of the chorus distract from the overly bold lyrics being sung by an overly meek vocalist.
Y’all know why.
Here are my picks:
- Storms of Life
- Always & Forever
- This is Me
- High Lonesome
- You and You Alone
- Three Wooden Crosses
- Hard Rock Bottom of Your Heart
- On the Other Hand
- Dig Two Graves
This is Country Music in 2015.
Here are the winners of the 2015 ACM Awards:
Florida Georgia Line
Little Big Town
“I Don’t Dance”
written by Nicole Gallyon, Natalie Hemby, and Miranda Lambert
performed by Miranda Lambert
“Drunk on a Plane”
“This is How We Roll”
Florida Georgia Line with Luke Bryan
3 – Miranda Lambert
2 – Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line
4,332 – Country Music’s Dignity and Sense of Self-Worth
The fiftieth annual Academy of Country Music Awards air tonight, and Country Universe has you covered! Here’s a rundown of all of the major categories, along with some commentary from our writers about who should win, who will, and what the nominations as a whole say about the current state of country music.
Share your thoughts about this year’s show in the comments, and check back for a list of winners when it’s all said and done.
Update: Join the CU crew on Twitter (@CountryUniverse) during the show to share your thoughts as things unfold!
Entertainer of the Year
- Jason Aldean
- Garth Brooks – Jonathan
- Luke Bryan – Sam
- Florida-Georgia Line
- Miranda Lambert – Ben, Kevin
- Jason Aldean
- Garth Brooks
- Luke Bryan
- Florida Georgia Line
- Miranda Lambert – Jonathan, Ben, Sam, Kevin
BF: I think Lambert is due, but I could get on board with a win for Brooks, whose comeback tour certainly warrants recognition. Those are about the only two possible victories I could swallow.
SG: This is fan-voted, so it really comes down to who can most mobilize their fan base. I give Miranda the nod, simply because she and her husband can both rally the troops. As to who deserves it, it’s hard to deny the impact that Luke Bryan has had on country music, love him or loathe him. He also seems like a fair entertainer, whether it’s shimmying around the stage or falling off them.
Following up on yesterday’s post, Reba McEntire is the other legend that streeted a new album last week. As good a time as any to ask: What are your five favorite Reba McEntire albums and tracks?
Here are my picks:
- For My Broken Heart
- Rumor Has it
- What if it’s You
- Whoever’s in New England
- My Kind of Country
- The Fear of Being Alone
- If I Had Only Known
- The Greatest Man I Never Knew
- Fallin’ Out of Love
- Consider Me Gone
Those of you enjoying Dwight Yoakam’s new album, Second Hand Heart, have probably been fans for a long time!
Today, we’re sharing are top five albums and tracks for the legendary singer. Tomorrow, we’ll tackle the other legend who street dated this week.
Here are my top fives:
- Under the Covers
- This Time
- If There was a Way
- Tomorrow’s Sounds Today
- Things Change
- The Back of Your Hand
- Guitars, Cadillacs
- Ain’t That Lonely Yet
How about you?
This week brought tax season to an end, and depending on how it went for you last year, you’ll be collecting a refund check or writing one out to the IRS instead.
Seems as good a time as any to share our five favorite songs about money!
Here ‘s my top five:
- Merle Haggard, “If We Make it Through December”
- John Anderson, “Money in the Bank”
- Todd Snider, “Broke”
- Shania Twain, “Ka-Ching!”
- Alabama, “40 Hour Week (For a Livin’)”
“Break Up With Him”
Written by Matthew Ramsey, Trevor Rosen, Whit Sellers, Geoff Sprung and Brad Tursi
Any song that starts with, “Hey, girl! What’s up?” gets off to a bad start right away.
What follows is three minutes of a guy pressuring a girl to dump her boyfriend because he knows that she’d rather be with him, instead.
Today’s a fairly big release day for long time country music fans, as two legends release sets today: Reba McEntire, who returns after five years with Love Somebody, and Dwight Yoakam, who is back with Second Hand Heart, which is only his second album of new material in the last ten years.
We’ve already review the lead Reba single and lead Dwight single. We’ll have reviews up of both albums at a later date, but they influenced today’s Daily Top Five: What are your most recent purchases?
I’m still an albums guy, so I’m going to list my most recent five albums purchased, but feel free to list tracks instead, if you’re more the a la carte type.
My five most recent (country) album purchases are:
- Shelby Lynne, Temptation
- Shania Twain, Still the One: Live From Vegas
- Rhiannon Giddens, Tomorrow is My Turn
- Punch Brothers, The Phosphorescent Blues
- Jason Isbell, Sirens of the Ditch
You can read the CU reviews of Giddens here, and Punch Brothers here, and there’s a good chance you’ll be reading about the Lynne set when we finish our 1993 lists. Also, a great Starter Kit for Jason Isbell can be read here. (Start with Southeastern, if you don’t have it already, before moving on to Sirens and the rest of his catalog. You should have all of his catalog. He’s that good.)
What are your five latest country purchases?