Quotable Country – 03/14/10 Edition


Click the bullet after each quote to visit the original source.

It’s almost like we’ve captured a whole chapter, and we’ll have it forever. Whether it makes five dollars or $5 million, it’s something I’ll show my kids one day and go, ‘Your dad had it goin’ on at some point.’
- – Kenny Chesney on his new 3-D concert film. He added: “And when I say ‘my kids,’ I mean the hypothetical glimmers of hope that keep this 41-year-old muscle-shirted manchild surviving from one day to the next. And did I mention I’m not gay, because I’ve slept with literally hundreds of women?”

Now that I hear country music today and a lot of these newer artists, I’m going, ‘Man, I grew up with the George Joneses and the Merle Haggards, the Loretta Lynns and the Patsy Clines. I got the opportunity to sing with Vince Gill and Alan Jackson and Tim McGraw.’ I feel like I’m a hundred years old.
- – Patty Loveless.

Well, when I don’t hear twin fiddles and a steel guitar, I think I must be listening to just another rock song. And I don’t really like it. So when I first saw this Rascal Flatts video for “Unstoppable,” with so much guitar and not much else, I was not a fan. But then I remembered, “Oh yeah, I love this song.”
- – Rascal Flatts is no Pearl Jam, but Alison Bonaguro’s tortured logic is as compelling as ever.

Take note Taylor Swift. Miranda’s songwriting has more depth in one line than the entire “Fearless” album.
- – Comment on CMT Blog post about “The House That Built Me,” which Miranda didn’t write.

I’ve always said there’s not much to retire from. It’s not really hard work. This is a business. This is a job. You have to work, commit and be dedicated. It’s also fun and rewarding, and it’s not near as hard work as most of my fans have to do for a living. It’s hard to complain.
- – Alan Jackson keeps his job in perspective.

I do all of my songs that are good for the show in the show, and following [set closer] ‘Independence Day’ isn’t easy, so I decided to have a fun moment. We all grew up listening to ’80s rock music, and it’s a chance for the whole audience to be immediately transported back and just have a fun time.
- – Martina on encoring with “Livin’ On a Prayer,” because it’s inconceivable that a country audience could have a fun time singing along to a country song.

Q: What’s something you’ve learned being on the road with Swift?
A: Incorporate glitter and sparkly things to your stage outfits. It looks great.
- – Cheyenne Kimball is taking notes.

Yet a lot of what I write now I can’t perform on the Opry. It’s like the material is banned—too heavy, too risque, whatever. I can’t perform what I write, so when I go out there, I stick to the country roots stuff that the audience there wants to hear, that I love to do. It’s a great outlet for me to get to go do that. Friday night I sang with Rodney Crowell. We’ve been toying around with doing some duet stuff. We went out there and just did a couple of old country duets and it was so fun.
- – Elizabeth Cook follows her own muse.

Later, the stage became a virtual forest with a giant rope and swing hanging from a fake tree limb. Underwood swung high into the air while still managing to hit all the right notes on the poignant ”This Is Just a Dream.”
Even more spectacular was her emerging high above the crowd in the back of an airborne, blue pickup truck, singing John Denver’s ”Country Roads.”
- – Carrie Underwood’s headlining show is a whole lot of spectacle.

The problem is that this country/jam troupe doesn’t really excel in either realm. The country singles all sound pretty standard, like something Brad Paisley or Toby Keith might use for B-sides, and they’re full of lyrics that mine familiar subject matter in all-too familiar ways.
Unfortunately, that’s the plus side of the equation. The 10-minute instrumental jam near the start of the show, for instance, was such a self-indulgent bore that at times I felt like I was watching Umphrey’s McGee.
- – Zac Brown Band gets some rare less-than-glowing press from the Oakland Tribune.

Good country, in my opinion, has blood, sweat and tears poured into it. When I listen to Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Hank Williams Jr., Wayland Jennings, David Allen Coe and, of course, Conway Twitty – I’m kidding about that last one – I hear real sorrow, real joy and real hardship. I don’t hear this in most country today.
A lot of fans of the country legends past (listed above) have been wondering when our savior would come to rescue us from the high-pitched, emasculated, dreadful remnant of country that plays on the radio these days.
Ryan Bingham is that savior.
- – Some guy at the University of Houston’s student newspaper – presumably a big Wayland fan – gets a little carried away in his praise of Ryan Bingham.

There’s only one scenario under which I could ever see myself respecting the likes of Ryan Bingham:
If he were doing all of this (i.e. writing horrible lyrics, masquerading as a hardened road-weary cowboy, and being embarrassingly clumsy on the guitar) on purpose — as a joke — then I would give Bingham a pass on everything he does. Because if you think about it, that would be hilarious. All of these douche bag posers (like yourself), who have been waiting their whole lives for a way to listen to Goo Goo Dolls-esque music cloaked in a country music facade, will have been duped by Ryan Bingham, an unlikely comedic genius, in an elaborate practical joke on his loser fan base. However, until he convinces me otherwise, I will assume he’s being serious, and I will continue spreading the gospel truth: Ryan Bingham is a hack, and his fans are complete morons.
- – Commenter Jesus H. Christ gives aforementioned guy at student newspaper a piece of his mind.

Q: Wynette has a reputation — based mostly on “Stand by Your Man” — for being an anti-feminist mouthpiece, but she obviously paved the way for a lot of women in country. Do you think it’s fair to call her anti-feminist?
A: I think that’s horribly reductive. Tammy wore lime-green pantsuits! Proudly!
- – Jimmy McDonough, author of Tammy Wynette: Tragic Country Queen, a book whose title is presumably based on more than lime-green pantsuits… which are, yes, pretty tragic.

Q: What are you looking forward to most about sxsw this year?
A: We played last year and had a blast. We had a bunch of shows the last day and I got really drunk. Then we went to this industry party and I got even more wasted and was throwing hamburgers out of a second story window at people on the street. The sad part is that they were kinda fancy hamburgers that were probably pretty good. Also I thought the people I was throwing hamburgers at were just pedestrians but they were coming to the party we were at so it was kind of awkward when they walked in.
- – Nikki Darlin of punk-country act Those Darlins.

I just call you mine
To be honest, that’s because
I forgot your name
- – Country Haiku on Martina.

SPECIAL SECTION – Country music, as defined by Danny Gokey fans.

Wow, quite the unimaginative review. I guess its easy to say he’s ‘Christian singer” because he used to sing Gospel and has positive messages on some songs. And not country enough? Wake up and smell the coffee. Country is a place where faith can be talked about.
- – Country music is… Interchangeable with gospel music.

Where do you draw the line? When you infringe on Danny’s right to sing what he WANTS to! It’s called free speech! He once said that he didn’t want to take the Christian Music route because he wanted to reach more people with his message in song, and he does like to sing songs with a message ~ so that’s why he went country.
- – Country music is… A popular genre consisting of Christian message songs, but no particular musical features or historical legacy with which newcomers should familiarize themselves. If you disagree with this characterization, you are most likely infringing on Danny Gokey’s free speech rights.

Danny Gokey could have gone any direction. Right now country is a great place for him. Later, he can cross over to other types of music. I thought to be country all you had to do is Love and Respect this country we live in? What is the norm for country, or the requirements. There isn’t any.
- – Country music is… A temporary stop on the way to better things, a characterless catch-all format with no distinctive musical features, open to all singers who ‘love and respect’ their country, regardless of style… but not regardless of country, since it’s assumed that the home country ‘we’ all love and respect is the U.S. (Sorry, citizens of the 87 other countries that visited this site last month. Crazed Danny Gokey fan has spoken.)


  1. Steve Harvey says

    Underwood swung high into the air while still managing to hit all the right notes on the poignant ”This Is Just a Dream.”
    She was promptly served with a plagiarism suit by P!nks lawyers.

  2. ARodRocks says

    Another week, another foolish statement from Alison Bonaguro. Bonaguro is such a contributor to storehouse of boneheadedness that there should be a regular feature called “Bonaguro’s Boners and Blunders.”

    Whenever my friends say something stupid, I’m just going to reply and say, “You pulled a Bonaguro.”

    • says

      “When was the last time a Rascal Flatts song ever had twin fiddles and a steel guitar? Or even one fiddle?”

      Well, I can actually answer that question for you because I play the fiddle for Rascal Flatts. Twin fiddles are found during the solo section of “Love You Outloud”. During our show, however, I play the lead fiddle part & our guitarist, Joe Don Rooney, plays the twin part along with me. You certainly won’t find twin fiddles in every Rascal Flatts song, but the same could be said for most of today’s modern artists.

      There is lots of fiddle in most of Rascal Flatts’ music. I know this because I’m the fiddler, lol. I’ve been fiddling for 31 years now. I am the 1985-88, 1995 Louisiana fiddling champion. In other words, I am insanely addicted to fiddling! It is my passion in life. I’ve been fiddling for Rascal Flatts for over 8 years now and I can tell you this- If the fiddle wasn’t existent in Rascal Flatts’ music, then I would have never taken the job to fiddle for them in the first place. For that matter, I wouldn’t have been offered the job years ago. Plus if there were no fiddle, and Rascal Flatts was still willing to pay me for not fiddling, then I would have left them long ago because I’d be bored to death.

      Our show lasts 90 minutes on average. During that show I play the fiddle on almost every song. I play acoustic guitar on two songs and mandolin on only one. The rest is fiddle. LOTS of fiddle.

      Now about the song, “Unstoppable”. There are two versions. I play fiddle on the original version. There is also steel guitar on the original. The steel is in most of the other songs as well. Anyway, there is a second version of “Unstoppable” with no the fiddle and steel. This particular version is for pop radio. This kind of stuff happens all the time. It really comes down to what the radio stations are willing to play. In the past, we’ve had to replace electric guitar solos with fiddle so that the country stations would play it. It also goes the other way too though. We’ve had fiddle & steel either removed or replaced with electric guitar so that pop stations would be willing to play it on the radio. The entire music industry works entirely differently than it did years ago.

      I could go on and on about all of that stuff, but I’ve already typed quite a lot. God bless you all!

      -John Jeansonne

  3. Rick says

    I like that quote about Ryan Bingham’s fans, but I would alter it a slight bit to express something closer to my own heart: “President Odumbo is a complete political hack and his supporters are morons!” There, that’s more like it! (lol)

    Alison Bonaguro tried to write a book on “The Wit and Wisdom of Alison Bonaguro” and came up empty handed. I do like the expression “Pulling a Bonaguro” for making a foolish statement about anything. If Matt Groening knew about Alison, I think he could create a new Simpson’s character based upon her articles at CMT. I must admit I enjoy reading her pieces as I’m always sure to get a groan and smile out of her wacky comments. Alison is truly the Spokesmodel for Top 40 Airhead Country Radio! All she needs is one of Taylor Swift’s tiaras….

    Elizabeth Cook’s comment with “what she really meant” translations: “Yet a lot of what I write now I can’t perform on the Opry (because sadly a lot of it is crap). It’s like the material is banned—too heavy, too risque, whatever (ie much of it is not remotely country and some of it is crap).” I’m glad Elizabeth feels compelled to sing real country music when she performs at the Opry, as it should be.

    Wow, the gals from “Those Darlins” are about as classy as their tawdry lyrics. They belong in venues like “The House of the Rising Sun” in New Orleans and that shack that used to be outside of LaGrange, Texas. They are pioneering the new sub-genre of “Obamavoter Country” music designed to appeal to the lowest common moral denominator of their followers. Crikey!

      • Rick says

        Steve, I said that whorehouses are where these gals should be “performing”. Ummm, same difference I guess. By the way, I prefer to use the terms “strumpet” or “tart” as whore is just too harsh in this application…(lol)

        • Jake says

          I like songs about eating chicken and getting drunk yet somehow I was allowed to vote the Mccain/Palin ticket. Must of slipped through the censors somehow. I also like eating chicken and getting drunk.

    • Kim says

      I have family in LA Grange. I’ll have to ask them if they’ve seen them around.

      But really; if the Darlins girls don’t want to be classy they don’t have to be. If they’re low class and honest about it, hey keep on keeping on, I don’t see why people should have a problem with it. I wouldn’t call Jamey Johnson a class act either, but I love him. I have a bigger problem with the Carrie Underwood’s and her press machines that somehow make songs like Before he cheats and ‘last name’ fit into good role modeling and wholesomeness. Its those people that you gotta watch out for.

  4. Josh says

    Seems you’re having some fun with the Gokey comments here. You’re making your emotional reaction to Gokey and his audience clear, but your logic seems to be kinda less visible.

    Taking your first quote –
    {someone posted this here} Wow, quite the unimaginative review. I guess its easy to say he’s ‘Christian singer” because he used to sing Gospel and has positive messages on some songs. And not country enough? Wake up and smell the coffee. Country is a place where faith can be talked about. ●
    {and you claim it means this?}- – Country music is… Interchangeable with gospel music.

    It’s seems to be easy to see what you want to see when you don’t like a particular artist as intensely as you seem to dislike Gokey.

    How does someone saying faith can be talked about in country music mean “country music is interchangeable with gospel music?” Just looking at the charts this month, there have been any number of songs with faith references in them much stronger than most of what’s on Gokey’s CD. Just a sampling from the current charts without even taking note of the obvious classic country songs that would support your poster’s case.
    Chris Young – The Man I Want to Be
    Lee Ann Womack – There is a God
    Toby Keith – Crying for You
    Carrie Underwood – Temporary Home
    and I suppose you could throw in Pray for You, lol.

    Whatever happens with Gokey’s music, there should still be plenty of room on the charts for songs about cheatin’ lovers, beer, whiskey, and corn. And even if you get your apparent wish and Gokey goes away (not likely from what I see now, but you never know I suppose), there will be plenty of other country music artists & songwriters supported by heavy-hitting Nashville country music labels who don’t know that they are supposed to hustle themselves off into the “Christian” music ghetto if they want to mention their faith in their music.

    • says

      Let me make my logic more visible.

      My editorial (erroneously referred to as a review by the commenter) was considered “unimaginative” because although Gokey used to sing gospel and has positive messages in his songs, “country is a place where faith can be talked about” and so Gokey is now country.

      Here, again, is the pertinent excerpt:

      And not country enough? Wake up and smell the coffee. Country is a place where faith can be talked about.

      The commenter is right that country is a place where faith can be talked about, but talking about faith cannot possibly be what makes Gokey “country enough,” as the context of the comment implies, because faith is not a defining or unique feature of country music. In fact, it’s a feature that country music shares with gospel music. So if we base Gokey’s countryness on professions of faith, we’re saying that country and gospel music are, for all intents and purposes, interchangeable.

      The songs you cite aren’t country because they mention faith; they’re country because they engage in a musical and cultural tradition called country music. And they happen to involve faith, an undeniable part of that tradition, but not the whole substance of it.

      My argument – which was based on the album, not any deep-seated hatred for the singer – was that Gokey doesn’t understand, and perhaps doesn’t even want to understand, that tradition. That’s what my ears are telling me. But I can’t blame the guy for giving country a shot, given that there’s more money to be made here than in what you call the “Christian music ghetto.”

  5. says

    From Bonaguro’s Pearl Jam post:

    “since my gut reaction to this song was a good one, I think I’d better add it to my one-off playlist and keep it handy in case anyone ever accuses me of having a one-track mind.”

    One-track mind? One could be forgiven for thinking someone who would write things like what Alison Bonaguro writes here had a mind at all.

  6. says

    “One could be forgiven for thinking someone who would write things like what Alison Bonaguro writes here had a mind at all.”

    And that should read, “One could be forgiven for wondering if someone who would write things like what Alison Bonaguro writes here had a mind at all.”


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