I’m an old fart, so I’m late to the game when it comes to new music. I only hear new stuff when the musicians I play with bring it to me. I’ve played with a number of country bands in the past months. In the process, I’ve discovered some great new women singers and songwriters. The best, of course, is Taylor Swift, who I’ve written about before.
Carrie Underwood didn’t write Before He Cheats Again, but she knocks the hell out of it. It was written by Chris Tompkins and Josh Kear. Men wrote this song! It’s a female revenge song. You can tell how out of it I am, because this song was named the 2007 single of the year by the Country Music Association. Women beating the hell out of men and breaking the lights in their cars… those are now popular themes in country music!
Sunny Sweeney wrote and sang From a Table Away, another great song. The heroine is sitting in a restaurant watching her married lover having dinner with his wife. Great pedal steel guitar.
Now, I’m really going to show you what an old fart I am! She’s in Love With the Boy by Trisha Yearwood was released in 1991. It was a number one hit, and I heard it for the first time last week. The song was written by Jon Ims. This is a much more traditional, upbeat country song.
The action is all in country right now. Rock is dead or stuck in nostalgia. Or, so it seems to me. The kids are into “screamo” and “shredder” music, whatever in the hell that is. Rap and hip-hop don’t interest me. The videos look (and sound) like exercise drills for a high school cheerleading squad. All the old blues guys are dead.
The country girls and boys are playing rock and roll, and writing songs that deal with the reality of middle class love and life. My Sirius radio is usually tuned to the Outlaw channel. I’m looking for a full time country band to join.