There is a huge problem with today’s Country music and it’s not a lack of singing talent, pretty faces or cowboy hats. And it is not a lack of guitar playing talent either. Nope, it’s something far more serious.
So what’s the problem, you ask? It’s pretty simple. The problem is that today’s Country music bands are not “sticking it to the Man” like the Rock bands used to do.
The purpose of Rock music, when it was still alive, was to stick it to the Man. This was covered and covered well in the movie School of Rock.
Ask anyone that is old enough to remember the Sixties and they’ll tell you how the rockers of that decade loved to stick it to the Man. In the song Fortunate Son, Creedence Clearwater Revival, one of the greatest bands of their era, covered the Vietnam War, lying politicians and rich people that cheat on their taxes. CCR knew how to stick it to the Man.
But sadly, those days are gone. Rock music is dead and today’s Country music is boot-scooting on its grave. And as a result the Man is running wild.
The rockers of the Sixties were so successful at sticking it to the Man that they drove LBJ from office and brought down support for the Vietnam War. I’m not defending the Hippies from the Summer of Love but rather just giving credit where credit is due. In short, the rockers of the Sixties, most notably the singers and guitar players, were able to communicate with the young people of that decade and motivate them to rebel. This is the essence of sticking it to the Man.
LBJ was the Man during the Sixties and he got what was coming to him courtesy of Rock music.
But this idea didn’t start in the Sixties. If you go back to the Fifties you’ll find Elvis. He was the epitome of sticking it to the Man. When Elvis shook his legs on TV, something no one was allowed to do at the time, young people went crazy and began to shake their legs along with him. When Elvis started in with Jailhouse Rock the Man could not contain the rebellion.
What gave Rock music its power in the Fifties and Sixties was that it held the collective ear of millions of young people. Today’s Country music has the same power – it holds the collective ear of millions of young people. But what do Country music bands choose to do with this power? They sing about mud on their trucks, ticks on their girlfriends, bar fights, tailgate parties or their poor old broken hearts. I’ll give them credit for supporting our troops in some of their songs but if they really wanted to support our troops they’d stick it to the Man instead.
Music has always been the most effective way to communicate with young people. They just won’t listen to anything else. Country music bands today should be using their power to awaken our young people and make them aware of the decline of America and of the corruption all around them. Instead of singing about mud on their truck or how the rain sounds on that old tin roof, they should sing to today’s young people and tell them they’ll be lucky to have an old truck or even a tin roof over their heads if America continues on its present course. Using their guitars, today’s Country music bands could stick it to the Man by opening the eyes and ears of millions of young people.
Or should I say, millions of young voters.