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Saturday, May 19, 2007

Country music '07: Taylor Swift, Tim McGraw, and a whole lotta crap

I missed last week's Academy of Country Music Awards, which is a shame because they are one of the two times a year I pay attention to country music, the other being the CMA awards in the fall.

I was way into country about ten years ago, when it was dominated by Shania and Faith, and newer artists like the Dixie Chicks, Jo Dee Messina and Lee Ann Womack were taking over. (Notice how those are all women...) But then country radio stopped playing Shania and Faith because they were "too pop." And don't even get me started on the boycott of the Dixie Chicks...

Country music does well when it promotes its female artists. But now we're left with a bunch of annoying, loudmouth men like Toby Keith and Kenny Chesney. Tim McGraw is the only decent male country singer at the moment. If you look at a typical country top 20 chart, you'll be lucky to find more than 1 or 2 women. Every year, the nominees for Entertainer of the Year are four men and Brooks & Dunn. No women. It's stupid and it's a sad reflection on how behind the times Nashville remains.

Anyway most of this is just rambling, but the reason I brought up the ACMs is because I read that Taylor Swift did a killer rendition of her song "Tim McGraw," which was the best song in country music in 2006. This girl is 17 years old and has legitimately earned her place as a rising country music star (look out, Carrie Underwood...)

They keep removing clips of Taylor's awards show performance on YouTube due to copyright violations (thanks a lot, Dick Clark Productions), but I just found another one. This was cute - despite the success of the single, she had never even met Tim McGraw until the awards broadcast. Quick, watch now, before it gets removed again!!

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