When Luke Bryan hit the airwaves with "All My Friends Say" in 2007, he was part of a new trend of country music that was more rock and less twang, more percussion and less honky tonk. It was a fresh wave of music that started before Bryan, and will likely continue after the Georgia superstore, but one that he is proud to be a part of — even if some of his own musical heroes openly speak out against the format.
"I've heard legends say, 'I wish country music would go back to…'" Bryan told Country Aircheck via CMT. "I don't really understand why we would spend a lot of time trying to sound like people in the '80s and '90s. I get what people are trying to say, but you have to find your own sound."
Bryan's own music, which ranges from tongue-in-cheek with songs like "Country Girl (Shake It for Me)" and "Knockin' Boots" to the serious "Drink a Beer" and "Most People are Good," doesn't care if people like his music or not, as long as artists are given the freedom to make the music they want to make.
“One minute, I'm the savior of country music. The next, I've ruined it," Bryan reflected, adding that he vows to never complain about the music other people create. "I will never be the guy who criticizes and bellyaches about how someone makes music and a living for themselves. I’ve had it happen to me. So I'm never going to be that guy."
The Georgia native argues that music is music, and the attempted boundary lines in genres are unnecessary, and harmful.
"When I was playing 800-seat honky-tonks, as soon as I came off stage the DJ was playing Flo Rida and daggum T-Pain. Everybody had cowboy hats on and were dancing to rap music," Bryan said. "Now, people have playlist with all forms of music. The days where everybody just listens to one style of music because that’s the only channel their car will pick up on the radio are gone.
"People have their music they listen to when they’re on their boat," he continued. "They've got their music for when they ride around their farm. They’ve got their music they listen to when they’re tailgating at a football game. It’s all different, and it all sets a mood that they want to get into."0comments
Bryan is back at radio with "What She Wants Tonight," which is currently in the Top 20.
Photo Credit: Getty / CBS Photo Archive