Saturday, September 19, 2009

Lefty blazed the trail. Too many follow too closely.

I work today, and I cover a personal concert the singer/songwriter ROYAL WADE KIMES is performing for a couple in POTOSI, WIS.
I haven't heard Kimes yet, but I have a feeling he will be more authentically "country" than most of the slightly twangy pop that passes for MAINSTREAM COUNTRY MUSIC these days.
I can find examples of most types of music that thrill me. Driving to work just now, I listened to a country performer who always makes me smile -- the late and legendary LEFTY FRIZZELL.
With hits such as "If You've Got the Money I've Got the Time," "I Love You a Thousand Ways," "Always Late (With Your Kisses)" and "The Long Black Veil," Frizzell produced a template for many others to follow.
That's the problem.
Too many country musicians these days are following the template or worse -- they are simplifying even that original template to reach a money making, lowest-common denominator type of music.
I would argue piracy isn't killing music, lack of originality is killing music.
Sound-a-like songs played in endless succession on country music radio stations cheapens the music, making it less of a valuable commodity.
I actually look forward to hearing Kimes today. I don't anticipate hearing someone as original as Frizzell, but I expect to hear something refreshingly different than the polished sheen I hear whenever my wife or daughters flip the radio to a current country format.


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