"Earlier this week, I wrote in the newspaper about a hullabaloo concerning the CMA Music Festival. It seems that Kix Brooks — a member of superstar duo Brooks & Dunn, a past president of the CMA and a CMA board member — told a group of city business leaders that the future of the festival isn't assured until we find a way to pay the artists for performing. Immediately, some fans and observers took offense at Brooks' statement. "This festival is about the fans," they said. "Why can't artists take a night out of their lives to do something for the fans, without being paid?" Well, actually, they can. And they do. There are plenty of problems with contemporary country music, including but not limited to: samey production, safe and boring radio playlists, songs written by committees, albums conceived by committees who choose from those songs written by committees, headset microphones, "attitude fiddles," wind chimes, guitar tones that are straight from Journey's Greatest Hits, and... oh, friends, I could go on. But in terms of charitable endeavors and face time with fans, country artists get straight As."
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9 months ago