No one can dispute that Alan Jackson is a huge force in country music, however he can dispute that there is anyone out there today that can claim the same.
Jackson was recently involved with GQ Magazine’s photo-series titled “Sultans of Twang” and he ended up sharing some of his dismay at today’s country music.
“There’s some good music out there, but there’s not really much at all that’s real country music anymore on the mainstream country charts — what is nominated for awards,” Jackson said. “It’s been going that way for years now, and I don’t know if it’ll ever come back.”
Jackson reached his career pinnacle in the 90’s and started with his debut single, “Blue Blooded Woman”, in late 1989. Since that first single, Jackson has sold over 80 million records and claimed 35 #1 singles on the country music charts. It’s safe to say that Jackson has earned the right to criticize country music if he sees a need to.
Not all modern country stars are lacking in Jackson’s view, the “Chattahoochee” singer claims to really be a fan of Chris Stapleton.
“I’m a big fan of his. He was a bluegrass singer and has written bluegrass stuff. But what he’s making now really isn’t real country,” Jackson comments. “It’s more like bluesy, Southern rock kinda stuff. I love it, it’s great, but he’s the closest thing to country out there.”
In Jackson’s opinion it’s not the country music fans that are making these musical decisions, and he thinks the fans are wanting more of the traditional sound.
“I’ve got guys that work for me or young guys that I know in their 20s that listen to the old stuff, older than me, because there’s nothing new to listen to. It’s just sad,” he says. “I’m not bitter and I don’t expect radio at all to sound like Hank Williams in the ’50s, but there oughta be room for all of it out there. Because there’s fans for it out there.”
Luckily Jackson is still making music today, so maybe there is hope for country radio.
“People tell me over and over again that I’m the one that’s kept alive what little bit of country music’s left. I’m really proud of that, and that’s what I came to Nashville to do.”
Reminisce with Alan Jackson back to a time when there was his favorite brand of country music on the radio with his smash hit “Chattahoochee” below!