*Originally written by Austin Baucom who quit us.
A lot of weird trends have happened in my life. But the worst one is the rise of popularity in country music and the blasphemous shit it became. I’ve never been a huge fan of country music, but it didn’t use to make me sick like it does now.
If you go through Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Garth Brooks, up to Tim Mcgraw’s prime, it was okay. It wasn’t for me, but everybody had their own style and the songs were about something meaningful. That’s great. But that’s not what it is today.
Today it kinda looks like we perfected cloning and made a million Eric Churches. Seriously Eric Church, Luke Bryan and Jason Aldean look like triplets. My brother thought Luke Bryan and Eric Church were the same person and one was an alter ego, like Marshall Mathers and Slim Shady. And it’s the same stuff over and over again. It’s all about women, trucks and booze. It looks like a rap video with Levi’s and cowboy hats.
What the hell happened? Everybody looks the same, everybody sounds the same. Ariat boots, Levi’s, flannel shirts, beard and a hat. Write a song about whiskey, a song about a girl, a song about partying, a song about a truck and you have a million albums sold faster than you can blink. And the record companies can’t make them fast enough. But here’s the kicker: it’s gonna crash. Taylor Swift is the smartest bitch on the planet for jumping ship when she did.
If you go back to the late 80’s and look at glam/hair metal, you’ll see the exact same shit. Everybody sang about the same stuff, the guitars sounded the same, everything was identical. It was overproduced and everybody went belly up. Rock’s last kick in the 80’s was Guns N’ Roses, and they might have bought us a few more years if they had stayed together and made a record in a timely fashion. Motley Crue broke up, Warrant sold out, Tesla unplugged and Chris Holmes of WASP drank vodka in a pool during an interview and made hair metal look pathetic and sad. MTV tried to make the party go on all the time and instead shortened its life.
So here’s what will happen in the next 5 years: CMT unplugged specials will become a thing, Florida Georgia Line will feud and split up, somebody will die of a drug overdose or drunk driving, and then the market will shift as a younger generation tests their creativity. I don’t know what happens after that. Maybe it’s Jazz’s turn, maybe rock will get another shot, there’s a lot of good bands coming out. Maybe rap will turn away from pop and go back to its roots, or maybe an entirely different blend of genres will come out and blow everyone’s minds.
Also, if you’ve ever been to [the pub] you’ve probably noticed we don’t play country music. Here’s a note from our owner, Greg Parker, about why we don’t play country at [the pub]:
My thoughts on creating the rule were threefold. First, this is Ellensburg, you can literally hear country music coming from the sewer drains. Since access to country music was already covered by everyone, why not be different?
Second, I really don’t like country music. why, someone might ask? Well, as we all know, taste isn’t really a logical thing. I feel like most country music is stupid and the content actually makes people stupider. At the same time, I listen to hip-hop which could easily be charged with the same idiocy. Like I said, tastes are pretty irrational.
My third thought was be different and ridiculous.
“So let me get this straight, I can be fired for playing country music at the pub?”
“Yes, that’s right.” In a company with so few policies, creating one to ban one genre of music seemed to be noteworthy. And it has endured for nearly a decade.