Friday, November 22, 2019
Regardless, if 2019 wanted to "right wrongs", there are several issues with this performance:
Number one, if you're "celebrating women", you might not want to have your three stars perform a song written by a man. "Those Memories Of You" was written by Alan O'Bryant and originally recorded by Bill Monroe. You know, women have written songs, too ~ take, for instance, Dolly Parton.
My second impression of this opening is that Carrie really needed to let her seamstress finish adding a skirt to that glittery gold blouson.
The harmonies weren't quite pitch-perfect, but since it was a live performance, a little slack should be granted.
Number three: Is that Angelina Jolie in the audience, and if so, why?
Four: Dolly Parton is the ultimate performer. She carried this.
Loretta Lynn is an icon. The gals (whoever they were) who sang "You're Lookin' At Country" are not good singers. Don't they make 'em anymore? I guess, nice hair, though. It seemed that Loretta was in the audience as a prop. One of her twins, Patsy or Peggy, had to whisper in her ear and tell her what was happening. That's sort of disrespectful. New gals, you need to thank your lucky stars Loretta Lynn plowed a path for you.
Some indiscriminate bad singers tackled Tammy's "Your Good Girl's Gonna Go Bad" next ~ poorly. The camera honed in on Natalie Maines in the audience, who could blow all these gals out of the water, even the obviously gay one. I'm not on board with The Dixie Chicks' politics, but talent doesn't belong in the peanut gallery.
Reese Witherspoon? Is this the CMA's or a Hallmark Channel marathon?
Thank goodness for Tanya Tucker. She's younger than me, and showing her age as all of us do, but she can still belt it out. Tanya is an actual star.
Is that goofy Billy Ray Cyrus the camera panned to? If I recall correctly, he hasn't been relevant since 1982, and the mullet, bad as it was, was preferable to...this. And did Billy Ray sire any offspring who aren't crazy?
Pam Tillis is also in the audience, as opposed to on-stage. WTF? Ran out of time?
Gretchen Wilson represented the nineties. Kudos. Not a big splash in the pantheon of country history, but each decade deserves representation.
I'll admit, my curiosity regarding Crystal Gayle was whether she'd kept her freakishly long hair. It seems she has.
Terri Clark, who is an actual bad-ass hat-wearing guitar strummer, is next, and aside from the producers making her sing her song in the wrong key, she is a reminder that some country girls at one time had balls.
Next, Sara Evans does "Born To Fly", irritatingly interspersed with some girl in the audience over-emoting for camera time.
Martina McBride appears onstage to sing a bit of "Independence Day". It is, admittedly, nice to see a few artists who actually impacted country.
Yep, there's Trisha Yearwood in the audience, kept under wraps lest she put the prancers on stage to shame. Kathy Mattea, too. Dang, I guess neither of them fit the predetermined song key.
If Patsy were alive today, she'd sit these ladies down and explain to them the facts of life. "Do you want pity or do you want to sing?" she'd ask. Loretta might talk to them about baking bread with one baby on her hip and three more chasing each other around the kitchen table; and then climbing into a '59 Ford with a guitar bigger than she was and driving fifteen miles on rutted roads to belt out two songs in a smoky dive bar. "What, now, are you squawkin' 'bout?" she might ask.
Dolly should know better. Reba should know better. Spare me the self-indulgence. Either you can compete with men for radio play or you can go sob in a corner. Better still, you can stand up on your own two feet and get judged on your merits.
No time in country music were female artists overlooked. It's a 2019 fiction.
It's admittedly nice to see remnants of the past. That's not a gender thing. For all its imperfections, I enjoyed this video. I personally would have nixed the nondescript artists and focused solely on the stars, but...ratings.
Thanks, CMA's. Next, let's do Clint and Travis and Randy and Alan and George.
Saturday, June 13, 2015
Naturally that got some feathers ruffled (ooh, is that sexist? I guess male chickens have feathers, too.) But aside from the predictable outrage, this man's proclamation is just asinine. Is he at all familiar with country music?
Now, I'm not really "hip" to the latest in country warblings - my husband flipped the channel to the CMT Music Awards the other night, and I didn't recognize anyone except the two guys from the TV show, Nashville, and Reba. And I still don't know who the dude was who was dressed as a hospital orderly. But I do know the history of country music - the soul of country music. And you and I can thank the women for that soul. Need I remind everybody?
Did you forget:
What a wimp:
Oh, I forgot:
Damn those women singers!
Ridiculous to think that women could...
OMG, not two women!
I still remember this:
Well, I could go on...and on...but you get my drift.
So, radio programmer guy, I think you know where you can stick your "bro" records. You can stick 'em on the turntable, if you want, but c'mon. Let's not pretend.
Saturday, October 1, 2011
I won't say that "Crazy Over You" is the all-time best two-stepping song. Okay, I will.
This is how I first got to know Radney Foster:
Is that a kick or what? I love this song.
So, my introduction to Radney Foster was through his partnership with Bill Lloyd. Foster & Lloyd weren't around for a long time (although they're now back together), but they had some fine recordings.
Here are two (and regretfully, the guys only seem to have a couple of actual music videos from their halcyon days):
True music aficionados, I believe, pull out that little booklet from a new CD and check out who the writers are. As well as the lyrics, of course.
I always read my little booklet.
So, I found that Radney didn't just write for Radney. He wrote hit songs for other artists, too.
Like this one, by Tanya Tucker and T. Graham Brown (what the heck ever happened to T. Graham? He's a great singer!)
And this one, by Diamond Rio (Wasn't this DR's first hit song?):
How about Nitty Gritty?
Ha ~ and just to prove that I'm hip; I'm "with it" (although I have never in my life heard this song before), this is one that Radney wrote for Keith Urban:
Back in my sordid musical past, when I finally decided to give country music another go, I bought a couple of cassette tapes. One was by the Sweethearts of the Rodeo (and I don't remember the other one). I'd heard the SOTR a couple of times, and I liked their sound. It was, you know, country-sounding, as strange as that may seem today. I didn't know that Radney had written this song; I just knew that I liked it (and sorry for all the chatter in this video, but hey, it was the best I could find):
Lest we forget that Radney Foster is also a performer, here are some songs from his solo album, "Del Rio, Texas, 1959" (My, he looked much younger then!):
I'm kinda partial to this one:
And then there is this one, recorded by Sara Evans.
This song reminds me a lot of Texas in 1880. I think it was released around the time that I started to wean myself off of country music (not because of this song!), but it's kind of the last good one that I remember hearing on the radio.
The thing that I find about Radney Foster's songs is, melodically, they're superior. I, in fact, at one point, looked up the chord progression for this song, and tried to incorporate it into one of my own. Well, that didn't work.
What makes a good songwriter? Magic fairy dust? I don't know. I still say, either you've got it or you don't. You can't force things like that. Unfortunately.
I watched a video interview with Radney, in which he said that he has written between 25 and 50 songs a year for at least thirty years. I can't even comprehend that. Does he eat or sleep? Does he get any of that good exercise? I think he should get out and walk around a bit; stretch his legs; soak up a few rays. Man does not live by song scribbles and guitar chords alone. Does he?
Maybe writing 25-50 songs a year for thirty years makes one a master songwriter. But I truly think that if I wrote 25-50 songs in 30 years, I'd just have 750-1500 crappy songs. And what would be the point of that? How many crappy songs need to exist in this world? I'll say one. One crappy song. Just to have something to contrast with the good ones.
And to prove that good songwriters beget good songwriters, here's Radney's version of you-know-who's song: