Halfway to Hazard

The Worst Singles of the Decade, Part 1: #50-#41

October 21, 2009 // 61 Comments

Worst SinglesAs we begin our look back on the last ten years in country music, we’re starting with the bottom. Over the next few days, you’ll be reading about the worst that country music sent to radio in the 2000s, much of which they actually played.

But first, a disclaimer. This list makes no attempt to objectively list the worst singles of the decade. If that’s what I was going for here, I’d just post a collection of homemade tracks and twenty Rascal Flatts singles and call it a day. Instead, this list takes a broader view, including songs from accomplished artists that were just disappointing, copycat and fad-chasing numbers, and just plain old mediocre efforts.

This isn’t the type of thing we normally do, but I’m sure I’ll hear what I’m right about, what I’m wrong about, and what I forgot to include in the first place! Look for the best-of lists to follow as the year starts winding down.

The Worst Singles of the Decade, Part 1: #50-#41

Mark Wills, “19 Somethin'”

Pick a decade, man.

Toby Keith, “Who’s Your Daddy?”

The biggest casualty of Keith’s ascent to superstardom was his quality check. When your label lets you put out anything and radio goes ahead and plays it, the blame must be spread around for such silliness as this.

Halfway to Hazard, “Daisy”

In which a girl’s sole reasons for existing are to make a boy a man, lead him to God, and give him a child. After that, you can just kill her off in the final verse. This is why people hate country music.

Halfway to Hazard, “The Devil and the Cross”

September 8, 2007 // 1 Comment

Similar in theme to the recent Big & Rich single “Between Raising Hell and Amazing Grace”, but stronger in execution.    The “prodigal son” theme has been done before, but by weaving in a believable storyline, it doesn’t sound like a pointless retread. My biggest criticism of the Big & Rich single was its plodding pace.  Thankfully, Halfway to Hazard don’t make the same mistake.  “The Devil and the Cross” is lifted up by strong vocals and punchy production.    Given the chance, this might be the breakthrough at radio that this young duo needs. Grade: B Listen: The Devil and the Cross Buy: The Devil and the Cross

Halfway to Hazard, Halfway to Hazard

August 24, 2007 // 2 Comments

Halfway to Hazard Halfway to Hazard Shrieking diva syndrome.  It’s an affliction that has corrupted many a talented female vocalist.   They mistake screaming for singing, intensity for interpretation.   They errantly believe that the louder they belt the notes, the less likely we are to notice the mediocrity of the lyrics.   It’s a well-documented problem in pop music that has spilled over to country music in the past ten years or so. Not content with the genre being tainted by the excesses of pop music, we’re now being subjected to the male rock band equivalent  of shrieking diva syndrome.   The eighties hair bands are back, my friends, and they’re trying to pass themselves off as country bands.   The debut album of duo Halfway to Hazard reminded me at times of Guns ‘n’ Roses, and I don’t mean the tight, brilliant Appetite For Destruction Guns ‘n’ Roses, either.  Read More