Country music, politics collide

Published 11:06 am Thursday, October 27, 2016

Carrie Underwood, who has co-hosted the Country Music Association Awards with Brad Paisley since 2008, expressed a hope that this year’s broadcast (Nov. 2 on ABC) will be more homage to country legends than a forum for election-year politics.

With country appealing to both “red” states and “blue” states, millennials making up such a large segment of fandom and patriotism meaning different things to different people,that may be a tall order.

I understand there’s already a globalist move afoot to rename “country” music as “borderless chunk of inviting real estate” music. And watch for the genre to seek a different demographic with singers wearing tofu-boy hats, riding pick-up bicycles and doing a little Birkenstock-scootin’ boogie.

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Can dueling campaign slogans be far behind? Country has always had a sort of “I’m with her…sister” vibe about it, anyway. And it wouldn’t take much to get a “Make Rhinestones Great Again” petition going.

Don’t be surprised if the integrity of the election system comes into question at the CMA Awards, with songs such as “You’re The Reason God Gerrymandered Oklahoma,” “Stand By Your Voting Booth” and “You Don’t Know Me —- And That’s A Good Thing Because I Just Voted In Three Other Counties.”

Cybersecurity debates belong on the opinion page and not on Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena stage, so let’s hope there are no nostalgic performances of “I’ve Got Friends In Moscow Places” or “No one knows what goes on behind closed doors—-except that %&$# Julian Assange.”

It might appeal to the base, but it would probably be overly divisive if Dolly Parton sang “My Coat Of Many Concealed-Carry Compartments.” Equally distracting would be Bill Clinton warbling, “Crazy…crazy for designing Obamacare…”

Great restraint must be shown to keep law-and-order matters from spilling over into the awards. We could probably do without “If I Said You Had A Beautiful Body Cam, Would You Hold It Against Me?,” “Pop A Cop Again” and “I Walk The Line —- With My Hands Above My Head, A Prayer On My Lips And A Little Bit of Urine On My Underwear.”

Environmental concerns could ruffle some feathers in songs such as “Frack Naturally,” “Ecological Terrorist’s Daughter,” and “Polar Bears In The Stream.” And it’s great to keep memories of Tammy Wynette alive, but not in the form of “Our C-L-I-M-A-T-E C-H-A-N-G-E becomes final today.”

Viewers might squirm too much over revamped PC classics such as “Mama (Well, Both Mamas) Tried” and “You’re Walkin’ On The Fightin’ Side Of Me, Unless You’re In A Wheelchair, In Which Case, Please Forgive The Microaggression.”

Income inequality messages may cause hard feelings if someone does a cover of Lefty Frizzell’s “If You’ve Got The Money, I’ve Got The Time To Redistribute It.” Please don’t let Garth Brooks rehash “If Tomorrow Never Comes, Does That Mean We’re Vindicated For Running Up Such A Massive Debt With Runaway Entitlement Programs?”

For the sake of the future of country music, I hope we can avoid the really incendiary ballads such as “It Wasn’t God Who Groped Honky Tonk Angels” and “I Saw The Light —- But My Secret Service Agents Revived Me Before I Made It All The Way To The Other Side.”

The only intrusion of politics that might receive a bipartisan round of applause would be if Alan Jackson and guest Jimmy Buffett performed a duet of “It’s Nov. 9 Somewhere.”



Danny Tyree welcomes email responses at and visits to his Facebook fan page, “Tyree’s Tyrades.”