Saturday, January 15, 2005

The Andrew Sullivan Memorial Guide to Country Music, Volume I

There has been a great deal of lighthearted chatter about Andrew Sullivan flying around recently on GayPatriot, with some saying that GP is "the new Andrew Sullivan". GP, I love ya, buddy....but you still haven't done anything I've seen to send shivers down my sexual spine as Sully has. (grin)

One point that GP brought up on which he DOES outdo Sully is Andrew's famous statement that he doesn't "get" country music. As GP points out, he understands country music and in fact, has Kenny Chesney on regular rotation in his iPod.'s a start. Let me phrase it this way, GP....if you ever meet Kenny in person after watching one of his videos, you will wonder how they ever found enough women short enough to film them.

Bear with me -- I'm a ranch kid born and raised, I've DJ'd country music myself, had a country band in college, and in general have spent more times (and made more poor decisions) in smoky honkytonks, straight and gay, than I care to discuss. As part of the community service required to use this public space, I offer to you..... the first steps to becoming a country music aficinado.

1. Find a country music station. This is not difficult in Dallas, where there are four country stations (not counting norteno, which is simply country music in a language you don't understand). In California or New York City, where I believe country stations are either illegal or heavily taxed, this can be a far greater challenge.

Fortunately, my favorite station in Dallas, 99.5 The Wolf, streams live on the Internet -- click on "Listen Online" and enjoy. My favorite DJ is Amy B., who does 11 AM - 3 PM Central Standard Time, but if you get a chance....try to listen in every half-hour between 6 AM and 9 AM CST for Justin Frazell, who is a traffic reporter unlike anything you have ever heard before. Yes, we understand him perfectly!

2. Discover the virtues of CMT. A particularly nice thing is what CMT calls their "Listening Parties", where you can listen to full songs off the featured artists' CDs.

Once you're there, you can check out and play videos or songs from a few of my favorites:

-- Gary Allen. Cute and has a great set, pipes.

-- Darryl Worley. Also cute and VERY country -- don't miss his video, "Awful Beautiful Life".

-- Cross Canadian Ragweed. These guys will blow any conception you had of "country" right out of the water. Their song "Alabama", the video of which you can see on the linked site, is my current favorite of all songs.

-- Billy Currington. This would be what blog ally Boi from Troy calls a gratuitous sexpot inclusion, but hey....he sings well, too. It's not MY fault he's going to be Playgirl's March 2005 cover boy. (grin) The video of his song "Party for Two", a duet with country diva Shania Twain, is great fun to watch!

And finally, one has to include Big & Rich, if for no other reason than their latest song, "Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy" (video on link). I'll leave it up to your imagination why I like that particular lyric so much. (grin)

Stay tuned....there will be more. The fate of blue-state America is at stake here!

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