I Thought We Had An Outlaw

Can we get our outlaw back? Luke Combs came out of the gate hot in 2017 with This One’s For You. To this day, that album might be my favorite of all time. The album highlighted by “When it Rains it Pours” and “Honky Tonk Highway” is iconic, and a game changing album. Then in 2019 we got What You See is What You Get another masterclass from Combs. Although I don’t think it was quite as good as its predecessor, it gave us “Beer Never Broke My Heart” and “1, 2 Many.” Then… Growin’ Up happened. Yikes. Luke Combs made it painfully obvious that he was no longer appealing to an audience that included me in it. “Doin’ This” sounded country don’t get me wrong, but it was kind of boring. There isn’t a drinking song on it, there isn’t a party song on it. Its kind of boring, pop, love songs or songs about time.

Naturally when Luke Combs announced he was going to change up his style a little bit on Gettin’ Old. I was excited. Did Luke realize after the poor performing first half of the album that people wanted more than poppy love songs? Well… kinda. “Hannah Ford Road” and “Back 40 Back” sound more rebelous country than a lot of his newer stuff but its missing something. Neither of those songs have any bite or edge to them, it feels like manufactured music that they are trying to sell to us. I’m not buying. “Fast Car” is a cover of an old Tracy Chapman song that went viral. Luke is sending it to pop radio. I just don’t understand, Luke rose up to be the biggest name in the genre and turned his back on everything that made him him.

Remember when Luke released “Can I Get an Outlaw” way back in the day? He sang about how country music sucks and Nashville needs a rough around the edges artist to come in and change the game. Then HE WAS THAT GUY and it worked. Then as soon as he hit the top he decided to sing the “pretty songs” that he trashed earlier. I don’t blame him for going after the big money. I’m sure selling out has tens of millions of dollars more attached to it than not selling out, but the overnight transition bothers me. I want to be a Luke Combs fan, hell I even spend $150 to stand in his pit this summer. Don’t forget about us Luke, the day 1s who propped you up when Nashville told you your music sucked.

This isn’t an article meant to bash Luke Combs. Authenticity right now is at an all-time high and an all-time low. On one hand you Hardy, basically saying I’m going to write and perform country because I’m the best at it, but I really want to do rock. You have Chase Rice saying fuck it to his pop sound, and then recording an album in his living room. Than you have the other side of it. Luke Combs, Jason Aldean, and Kelsea Ballerini all putting out shitty music because they know it makes them money, then trying to tell us country people that we are stupid for not liking it.

That’s my TED talk of the day. I’m tired of being bullied by big name artists that think there shit doesn’t stink. Just because you live in Nashville and own a Rizzini firearm doesn’t make you know what country is. Can you listen to it working a farm? Can you drink a beer to it? Can you cry to it when your girl leaves you, or when your granddaddy dies? Can you hang out around the bonfire and jam to it? That’s country. Don’t give me some pop infused LA inspired trap beat song and get mad at me when I hate it. Don’t give me 25 inorganic poppy love songs in a row and get mad at me when I hate it. Anyway, I’m going to listen to some George Strait now.


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: