If you wonder why alt-country fans are not taken seriously…

…then here is your answer:

I’ve never considered Alan Jackson a “traditionalist.” I haven’t followed his career all that closely, but songs like “www.memory” and “Pop a Top” are just plain embarrassing. Has he really critcized pop country? I always thought of him as being right in the pop country wheelhouse…

(from the comments here)

Wow, really? I mean, sure, Alan’s released his share of crap, but to basically accuse him of being one of the things that’s wrong with country music is just asinine in the extreme. He is for good reason widely hailed for his allegiance to traditional country music. “Pop A Top”? Seriously, that song is a classic of the genre and if you ask me, Alan actually improved on the original. And if you don’t even know about “Gone Country,” “Murder On Music Row,” “Three Minute Positive Not Too Country Uptempo Love Song,” or Alan’s protest at the 1999 CMA Awards ‚ if you’re not familiar with any of that — then you really don’t have any business commenting on the man and his devotion to country music. I would bet money that if AJ were not a Nashville-based artist people like that would be singing his praises just like they do those of their underground heroes.

Snobbery like that has always bugged me. Sure, to an extent I am a music snob, but I’ll give just about anything a chance and try to make an honest judgment. I don’t think the same can be said of at least a few alt-country fans. I am reminded of one of Triggerman’s Country Music Archetypes:

If you don’t like Hank3 godammit, then you’re not cockstrong! He’ll preach to you about REAL country music like WAYLON FUKIN’ JENNINGS, JOHNNY FUKIN’ CASH, and ALL THE HANKS! But can’t name you one song from Hank Snow or Hank Cochran, and has no idea the King of Country Music is in fact Roy Acuff….Anything that is popular or mainstream immediately sucks.

For the record, that was the punk/metalhead country convert. And I am sure the alt-country fans’ knowledge of country is deeper and wider than that, to give them the credit they deserve, but that attitude is still dumb.


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