Falling in Love With Alabama Again
August 16, 2013
Jimmy Carter in his homebase Nashville.
Alabama owned the '80s in Country music. Their music was great and holds up well with the passing of time. This week I listened to their new album, Alabama & Friends. That rekindled my Alabama fire. They played the Opry and sounded fantastic. The energy and enthusiasm smoked the home computer where I was listening to the Opry on Tuesday night.
From cassettes and vinyl to listening to them on my iMac and iPhone, an evolution and revolution, they have witnessed and played all along the way with. To put it in perspective, Luke Bryan was four when Alabama had their first hit ... Kenny was 12. They were influenced and raised on their music. Jamey Johnson says "My Home in Alabama" was the first song he ever learned to play on guitar. They were the country Beatles ... and that is not a title I throw around recklessly.
Alabama is older, richer, wiser and still sound like they just left Fort Payne for Nashville. I hope corporate radio will allow the legacy of this group to roll into 2013. Paisley helped with his song "Old Alabama." Now let their music be heard!
Corporate-think has such a stranglehold on Country's style. A lot of female vocalists are in the pipeline again, but will they ever be heard?
Sarah Darling is really impressing the Alan Jackson audiences when she opens. She is not a bubblegum Country singer. Discover her if you have not done so already!
If you never saw Carrie Underwood's Blown Away show ... a million folks did ... check out her DVD of the show. Taylor Swift did not have a monopoly on big productions; Carrie's was impressive with all the tricks and then some.
Then there's Luke Bryan's week ... heard him sing "Love in the First Degree" on the Alabama & Friends CD. Saw him on Chelsea Lately having fun, Jimmy Kimmel then on the Today Show. Along the way, a possible 450,000 sales week ... #1 pop and country in the week ahead. He is on fire.
Luke had a backpack and it was stolen in Washington State with his wallet. So if you see a Luke faker, call the cops. Luke is enjoying his fame, it seems. Let's hope this steady upward move carries him as far as possible. I saw it coming ... but not this fast or this big. He has worked so hard and deserves his success.
Billy Currington has gotten into a mess. October 4th is the next court date. A jury trial is on schedule unless some type of diversion. Lots of witnesses to Billy's alleged temper blowout. The state prosecutors have way over-reacted in the charges. Terrorist acts and elder abuse. Outrageous! Georgia law reads a little weird, but no way can the jury convict him under statutes like this. Serious time if convicted, but hopefully some type of settlement can be reached pre-trial.
Summer concerts are still very much in play. School, though, is back all over the South. College and pro football almost here. The CMA voting and award election are on going. Cool air today in mid-August. Where will Country Music be in the next year? Luke will be big, Garth will be back, George will say goodbye to the road. 2014 model year is here in the cars and trucks. What will Country music do to remain hot in 2014 with Kenny and Taylor off the road? Hmmmmm
Thirty-six years to the day as I write this ... Elvis died at Graceland. He was 42. There were stars and then there was Elvis. Downloaded The Wonder of You today. His music still sells and people tour Graceland when they can't tour the White House. Get into the Elvis history; it remains fascinating.