Quotable Country – 03/24/13 Edition

Click the bullet after each quote to visit the source.

[Taylor Swift brings in] a huge group of people who are gay, and loud and proud about it, and that hasn’t been catered to yet. Not that I just want to cater to it. I just want to show them some love. Why can’t we talk about you? You’re a real person, you’re in a real relationship, and I’m tired of people acting like it’s not, just because of their religious beliefs. It’s not fair.
– – Kacey Musgraves.

Recognizing when you are channeling something great is an important part of the craft. It’s not always the writing itself that’s most important. Sometimes it’s something more subtle-the recognition of the wheat from the chaff. The skill of hearing which pieces have something poignant, meaningful and lasting takes time to develop. This is why sometimes you hear talented writers who don’t seem to know which songs are the keepers. It’s an actual skill that develops and it’s a skill that some people don’t nurture or even recognize.
– – Rod Picott on songwriting.

We try to dress [up] for the fans, to let ‘em know that we appreciate ‘em being there. … Also, through the years I’ve been playin’, [I’ve learned] if you’re not on top of your game, if you look the part, that helps a whole lot. (laughs)
– – Junior Sisk on dressing for success.

I love Lee Ann Womack and John Prine. That’s kind of my ideal cross point. If I can sing it like Lee Ann would and say it like John would, then I feel like I’ve gotten somewhere.
– – Kacey Musgraves again. Her new album is Same Trailer Different Park.

These days, Clawson’s writing less rural stuff and more of what he calls “frat boy-party-country” stuff. But country trends come and go, and Clawson writes about what he knows. “For the McGraw song, it was just us thinking back to high school or college, about picking a girl up and going to a party and getting to make out with her,” he laughed.
– – Songwriter Rodney Clawson, responsible for recent hits including “Feel Like a Rock Star,” “Take a Little Ride,” “Sure Be Cool If You Did,” and “Get Your Shine On.”

[Matt] Warren recalled he was working as a waiter at Chili’s when a customer asked if he’d be interested in earning $100 a day plus a $25-a-day food allowance and the chance to travel all over the country selling merchandise for a country artist. Warren said he would.
He had the choice of taking the job with Rascal Flatts or with [Gary] Allan.
“I didn’t listen to country music then,” he explained. “So I said I’ll go with the guy with one name.”
– – Matt Warren’s first #1 as a songwriter, the Gary Allan co-write “Every Storm (Runs Out of Rain),” started from a chance encounter at Chili’s.

He amazes me every day. He plays me new songs he’s written. I, for sure, wasn’t writing those caliber songs at 21, and I’m not writing a lot of them now at 41. He had four cuts his very first year after he got signed, with Jason Aldean, Lee Brice, Scotty McCreery and Joe Nichols. Then he got his record deal on Valory. He’s just a good boy and he’s just got that ‘it’ thing.
– – Rhett Akins on son Thomas Rhett.

TGIF! Meet my friend Teensi. We live for Friday afternoons, because we meet at Red Robin for lunch. I had a salad today, I swear! (OK, nevermind what I ate).
My Friday ritual got me to thinking, what do you do on Fridays? Do you enjoy a half-day? Do you have the day off? Do you get to wear jeans to work?
– – Taste of Country is trying to put a face on its soulless, hit-driven web presence by having one of its radio personalities do chatty, pointless personal posts. Irksome.

Is it weird that I always love to wear shorts, T-shirts and flip flops anywhere I go, no matter what temperature it is outside!? Is it because I’m bear-like?
– – Uh, okay. Taste of Country’s Jeremy Robinson.

Octomom, 37, filmed the video last fall during a break from her 30-day stint in rehab for her Xanax dependency. At the time, Radar Online reported that she was “extremely annoying” to everyone on the set and “her crazy laugh scared all the geese off.”
– – Cledus T. Judd booked the Octomom for a “Pontoon” parody music video. God help us.

I know it sounds pretty out there, but it’d be pretty awesome to collaborate with Wiz Khalifa or Lil Wayne. We just recently did a collaboration with Nelly, which was pretty neat because we’re both big fans of Nelly.
– – Florida Georgia Line’s Tyler Hubbard. It’d be pretty neat if he went away.

Before he reached Nashville, he made his first pitch — literally — through an open window of Linda Ronstadt’s tour bus in 1976 when it was parked at Greensboro Coliseum. [He] doesn’t know if Ronstadt ever heard his tape, but it was one of his first “stunts” to get his music heard.
– – From a Winston-Salem Journal article on “Fool Hearted Memory” songwriter Byron Hill.

I don’t know if we get wiser, but we have more experiences under our belt, and I think maybe your sense of humor gets more intense as you look at the world from a little bit of a distance. I’m just too busy living every day to really spend a lot of time thinking, “Am I old?” I’m this age. I am in this moment and in this life. One of the great things about dogs, they are totally in the moment, and I think that’s a very difficult thing for humans to do. We’re cursed with self-consciousness. We can’t get away from ourselves. You asked me if I have any regrets? I regret that it took me all that time to figure out I could have a dog on the road.
– – Emmylou Harris, brilliantly, on aging. From an especially worthwhile interview by Joan Anderman for the New York Times.

Excuse me? A mainstream-sounding country song with a chorus suggesting I roll up a joint and kiss people of my same gender? As a country-music fan, I must admit this is a fresher vision of personal freedom than beer, beach vacations and firearms.
– – NPR’s Will Hermes on Kacey Musgraves’ “Follow Your Arrow.”

The more ups the better. For this next album we’re really focusing on getting radio play, and uptempo stuff seems to do a little better in that environment. In the last year I’ve [had] lots of success whether it was sales or awards shows, but I’ve never had that radio hit. And that’s my focus now.
– – Heads up: Scotty McCreery will be getting even boring-er.

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  1. Rick says

    What is with Kacey Musgrave’s preoccupation with gay rights? Songs like “Follow Your Arrow” of course score big brownie points with NPR and all political lefties for that matter. Come to think of it I’d bet that Kacey is a devoted NPR listener to make sure she gets her daily dose or politically correct propaganda reinforcement while she sips her Starbucks mocha latte. Crikey!

    Speaking of the intersection of leftist thought and country music, last night I saw a so-called “Bluegrass Musical Comedy” titled “Paradise” at a small venue next to the Santa Monica Airport after the Michelle Shocked concert I had a ticket to was cancelled. All of the actors and actresses acted and sang quite well and the musical score was far better than I expected, and it even included some choreography and tap dancing! The major drawbacks were repeated blasphemy against the Christian Deity, foul language, and crude sexual comments among many other affronts to common decency. If the writers/composers were to clean ouit all the garbage and make a “G Rated” version this musical would actually be worthy of hitting the road with a touring company and could play anywhere. As it is in its present foul state only large cities full of liberals would work. If it were presented as is in the Bible Belt I have a feeling the cast would get tarred and feathered and carried out of town on a rail, and deservedly so…

    I don’t know what “Taste of Country” is, and it’s going to stay that way! AOL’s “The Boot” is about as close to the People/Us magazibe mindset approach to country music artists as I care to get.

    I am really glad I got to see Rod Picott with Amanda Shires back before she hooked up with and married Jason Isbell. Rod and Amanda presented a low key acoustic set that was captivating with its simple and honest charm. I’m guessing those days are long gone! (lol)

    So Willie has his smokes and Emmylou has her dog. My equivalent is the really nice stereo I have in my beater car! As Aaron Tippin sang “There ain’t nothing wrong with the radio”!

    I’ve heard Scotty McCreery and Josh Turner have a bet going as to who can record the most boring country music on Top 40 country radio! I think it’s going to be a tie!

    • Mike Wimmer says

      What preoccupation with Gay rights? I confess I dont use/follow twitter or facebook so maybe she is more vocal about it there, but this is the first I am hearing of it. I dont think follow your arrow is written with the pure intention to grab the NPR crowd, I can be as cynical as they come, but I dont see the harm in the song.

      The ironic thing is how you claim Kacey is just baiting NPR/liberal/whatever listeners with “follow your arrow” when your comments are doing the same thing really. A different intention perhaps, but painting her and her fanbase in small box just comes off as you grasping for attention.

    • Eric says

      It’s very unlikely that Kacey Musgraves is a “latte-sipping” NPR listener. For one, the NPR demographic is significantly older than the national average, and very few young people listen to it. “Devoted Daily Show viewer” would probably be more accurate here.

      Secondly, Kacey Musgraves’s music is strongly rooted in small town and working-class America. She takes pride in a rough, “unrefined” identity, which does not mesh well with the “Starbucks mocha/latte drinking” stereotype.

    • Eric says

      I will add that Kacey Musgraves’s strategy is to reach out to disaffected young women in rural America. Young people are, of course, very liberal on gay rights (in fact, I would guess that the average American in the 18-29 age range is more supportive of gay marriage than the average NPR listener). Young social liberals who grew up in socially conservative rural areas, in particular, will strongly relate to Kacey’s advocacy of gay rights and her generally rebellious attitude toward repressive traditions.

    • Grant says


      I feel sorry for you that you let your political persuasions dictate the type of music you choose to enjoy. There are so many “political lefties” out there that have made great music. I’ll just give you a few recommendations that you have probably missed out on due to your political bias: The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, and Steve Earl for starters. I really think you should give those guys a listen, you might find their music highly enjoyable! However if you find you don’t care much for those artists I mentioned, feel free to take your truck to a dirt road, have a few brewskies, and crank your Toby Keith records! That is your right as an American and I fully respect your choice to do that. I just hope you might be willing to expand your horizons and give some “politcal lefties” music a shot!

  2. Sarah says

    Lots of respect to Kacey Musgraves; it takes guts to say something like that in an environment like country music, which drove away the likes of k.d. lang. I didn’t pay much attention to the initial Merry Go Round hype, but I recently acquired her album and I think people are right to think she’s a bright spot in mainstream country. It helps that she co-wrote Mama’s Broken Heart, which is the only recent mainstream country song I really enjoy. I’m excited to see where she goes in the business.

    I really like the Emmylou quote. Wish more people thought that way.

  3. Michael says

    reading these comments prove my point that in today’s world we can no longer express our own view without creating a sort of backlash. Whether you’re conservative or leftist its started to became weird.

    There was a time when a guy like the commenter Rick would state his opinion and be respected and a girl like Kacey would voice out her opinion and be respected.

    Today, it’s all about which political side you’re in. And our opinions became bias towards which side would that be.

    For the conservative, gay marriage is wrong and if you’re pro-gay marriage living in a town of people against it, then good luck to you.

    For the leftist, gay marriage is a sign of equality and tolerance and if you held the anti-gay marriage view in a town full of leftist, then good luck to you too.

    No more healthy discussions. Gone were the days when you can learn to agree to disagree.

    I don’t know Merle Haggard and Hank Jr personally but based on what i heard and read, these two have very opposing political views with Merle on Hank’s previous record.

    • Sarah says

      I don’t want to get into a political debate on this blog (I’m sorry if this comment is out of line, and I won’t make any more comments in this thread), but these things are personal and relevant to people. When I listen to music, it’s about the music, and not the opinions of the people who make it (or the other people who listen to it), but as a gay country fan, I feel more comfortable listening to music made by someone who’s supportive of the life I live. People have the right to express whatever opinions they want, but when those opinions are that there’s something wrong with me, it makes me feel less welcome in the country music community. Kacey Musgraves is reaching out to the relatively untapped market of country fans who feel that way, and I’m glad she’s doing it, for her own sake and for the fans’ sake.

  4. MH says

    “We’re inspired by a lot of the guys we’ve been on tour with. Jake Owen is a big inspiration to us, and so is Luke Bryan. We love Garth Brooks and a lot of older country musicians as well, but right now, those are probably the three top artists that inspire us,” Kelley said.

    Gotta love how Florida-Georgia Line’s Brian Kelley throws down the “influenced by older country musicians” card to try to justify they’re country. He mentions Garth Brooks but even Garth didn’t sound like this garbage.

  5. Ben Milam says

    If everyone would just think and be just like Rick, then everything would be better. We would all be miserable, bitter assholes, but better.


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