So it looks like the sellout is almost complete.

Whose? Why, Brad Paisley’s, of course:

Produced with longtime collaborator Luke Wooten (Dierks Bentley, “Nashville”), “Moonshine” sees Paisley adapting the modern technology of EDM and dubstep to the classic country formula. “When you hear a banjo through stutter edit, it’s the coolest thing you ever heard,” Paisley said. “I have a song that’s a basic love song, it’s got a great groove, and I cut this guitar part that gets distorted when I turn the nob up. I would say to Luke, ‘Oh, that should’ve been done 20 years ago, but they couldn’t.’ The rulebook’s gone, or was there ever one? They try, but I don’t play by it.”

“The rulebook’s gone.” And that right there’s where Paisley gave away his game plan. Why? Well, when you hear people talking about “no rules,” “no limits,” or “no genres,” it’s always, without exception, going to be used to justify their selling out and getting away from what made them so beloved in the first place — if not right then, then eventually. From the sounds of it, Paisley’s not wasting any time doing it.

And it’s just so disheartening. I mean, he was never on a George Strait level, but he actually started out pretty decent. I remember his first couple of albums and they were pretty good — Part II in particular. And I wonder, where the hell did the Brad Paisley who made THAT cd go? The title track, “Too Country,” “I Wish You’d Stay,” all of those songs were great. I even liked “Munster Rag,” the instrumental track on there. And “The Old Rugged Cross,” with just him and his guitar at the Grand Ole Opry…that song was freaking transcendent to my ears at the time, and it still gets me. Such potential and talent, and he pissed it all away in an effort to show he’s more “open-minded” than anyone else.

And then there was this comment at Saving Country Music:

I think Brad Paisley is just bored at this point. I mean, he had ten consecutive number-one singles (17 consecutive top-two singles, 19 if you discount the bastard country chart), 7 number one albums and is on the back end of his career. He’s basically done everything you can in country music without getting a single mainstream pop radio hit or number-one Billboard 200 album.

And that may be true, but I don’t think that justifies what it looks like he’ll be doing with this album. If Paisley’s bored with country music maybe he should just step away from it until he’s not bored anymore instead of aiding and abetting in the bastardization of it.

And yeah, maybe Brad Paisley has accomplished a lot — but then George Strait and Alan Jackson have both accomplished everything he has and then some (including not just one but multiple Billboard 200 No. 1 albums), but you never saw either of them resorting to these types of shenanigans. I guess all this just goes to show all of us either just how artistically bankrupt Brad Paisley is or that his professed love for the genre was only just barely skin deep.

Or both.



2 Responses to “So it looks like the sellout is almost complete.”

  1. Sabra Morse Onstott Says:

    Selling out shouldn’t mean “making music I don’t like.”

    It’s not possible for Brad Paisley, who has for his entire career been a corporate country star, to sell out. Look at his earliest hits–“He Didn’t Have to Be” is pure schmaltz aimed squarely at the soccer mom demographic, “Waitin’ On a Woman” and “She’s Everything” are more of the same. Songs like those are peppered with the occasional light novelty song to appeal to the menfolk. He’s always been a marketable commodity and little else. Distasteful as I may find what he’s doing now, the truth is it’s what he’s always done, and anyone taken by surprise just hasn’t been paying attention.

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