Jake and I were listening to some horrible country radio station the other day when Jake looks up at me and goes, “You know, I think I’m over country music.”
I stared at him. “Who are you?” I said. “What did you do with my husband?”
Jake is an avowed country music lover. It’s because of him I know all the lyrics to songs like this one. He’s the one who introduced me to Miranda Lambert, Steve Earle, Chris Le Doux, Pat Green, even Gretchen Wilson. It’s the only kind of stations he listens to when left to his own devices. So for him to say he’s “over country” is like me saying I’m “over flossing my teeth four times a day.” It’s antithetical to our being.
But we’ve both noticed something lately (I listen to way more country than I am comfortable admitting but it’s because of where we live and our lack of choices, I swear): So many country songs now are about wet tee shirts and tight jeans (I refer to “bro country” specifically). It’s like country is dipping its toe into raunchier waters. Back in the day, country music was more about clever song writing, word play, stories. This is why country music is compelling to me — the song writing blows the pants off of pop (with the notable exception of “Jesus, Take the Wheel”). Lyrics rarely went below the belt, and when they did, it was under the most veiled allusion, at best.
Now country apes bad jock rock in that it’s suffused with the most obvious cheeseball sexual innuendo. If I have to hear one more song about starin’ at her tight jeans while she’s bent over tryin’ to catch cat fish with her bare hands — and lovin’ it! — while I’m making June’s dinner, I’m going to drop kick the radio out the window. Guys, THIS WOMAN DOES NOT EXIST. She might be bent over in tight jeans trying to catch your cat fish for dinner, but she won’t be loving it, I assure you. She is probably plotting how to kill you, more like.
Anyway, back to Jake’s declaration.
“We need more alt country in this house,” he clarified.
That is the sweetest music to my ears. Because as far as I know, alt country hasn’t jumped on the wet tee shirt band wagon. Yet.