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Is Country Music Changing for Better or Worse? [POLL]

Florida Georgia Line
(Photo by Bryan Steffy/Getty Images for GolinHarris)

The ACM Awards last night brought up some interesting comments on our show this morning, as well as on Facebook. Some people don’t like the new Country sound coming out of Nashville. One song that especially took some heat was the country/rap song by Florida Georgia Line (with Luke Bryan) called This is How We Roll.

I have a couple of thoughts on this. First of all, Floridan Georgia Line has exactly one song that exhibits elements of rap. I don’t think that defines them as not being a country band. Toby Keith did I Want to Talk About Me (a song by the way the record label didn’t want to release but thankfully did) and he certainly wouldn’t be considered anything but a country artist.

My second thought is about country music in general. It’s changing. There’s no question about it. But music, just like everything, evolves. There was a big segment of country music fans who were not excited about artists like Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings because their sound was different from Mel Tillis, Patsy Cline, and Hank Williams Sr. Now it’s Johnny who they’re using a a barometer of what country music should sound like.

I don’t think you can compare the new country with the old. It’s like comparing a football to a basketball. You also can’t fight it. Life evolves, people evolve, and so does music. I guess what I’m getting it is, people have always fought change. Remember, some people thought riding horse was just fine. What do we need those new fangled cars for? many a person at the turn of the century said.

Is the new country better than the old country? I’m not so sure. Is the old better than the new? Some of it, but not all of it. Music is very subjective, so let’s just not compare but rather appreciate each song individually.


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