I love listening to Jason Boland, Stoney LaRue, Randy Rogers Band-all those guys. And so when people ask me what kind of music I listen to I tell them Texas country or Red Dirt Country. But the problem is that that title for the genre is so geographically limiting. I mean really, what are we supposed to do about the great artists that are starting to come out of Kansas? Sunflower country doesn't quite have a good ring to it and despite my husband's suggestion of Red Wheat Country, I'm still not sure what to call it. But there are many different bands and individuals that I have had the great pleasure to listen to from open mic nights at Longhorns in Manhattan, KS to county fairs to opening for some of the big names like Jackson Taylor and the Stragglers or the Casey Donahew Band.
Some of the guys that are playing and getting a great following here in my home state, that I have listened to and really enjoyed are Jared Pete Gile, Russell Sawyer and the Lost Cause, Jared Daniels Band, or Callous Maddy.
Jared Pete Gile is one of the greatest songwriters I've heard. I love his shows-perfect for a good bar and some great friends hanging out. I couldn't even tell you the number of times that we've heard him, but I can tell you that if you asked my husband for his favorite song he would quickly tell you Old Back 40 Lover.
Just a half full whiskey bottle and this old beat up guitar
They’re the only two friends that I’m gonna need tonight
I’m gonna tell one my troubles and let the other wash them away
After a little conversation everything’s gonna be alright
I’m just a country boy that’s been locked down by the handcuffs of a bigger town
I still feel guilty bout leavin Daddy on the farm
He told me to go on off to college and make your Momma proud
Cause in 5 years this little farm’s gonna be long gone
I’m just an ol back 40 lover that got stuck on the other
Side of the fence and it’s got me feeling all wrong
I’m just an ol back 40 lover didn’t take me too long to discover
That the city ain’t where this ol country boy belongs
So, now I’m just a sittin here alternating shots with bottles of beer
Acting plumb crazy, getting all drunk and loud
With an average of 5 nights a week in Aggieville
Can’t seem to shake this guilt I feel
Sorry Daddy, but I don’t think I’m makin Momma proud
With a little luck I guess I’ll get a degree but it’ll just be another piece of paper to me
An education’s never made anybody more of a man
But a little hard work sweat on your back, hell some of these boys ain’t ever heard of that
But you can bet I’m damn proud of the calluses on my hands
I’m talking about clear water and spring fed fishing holes
The sunset on the leaves in the fall
How the open countryside becomes a little part of your soul
And how working alongside your family might be the best part of all
I said the city ain’t where this ol country boy belongs
I think there are a lot of people my age (my husband is one) that can really identify with that feeling about leaving the farm and trying to do something different but always knowing where you're really supposed to be. I love it.
And when you can get a songwriter that writes songs like that and will also throw in the good bar tunes like, Just How Drunk - you know you've got it good!
Just how drunk would you have to be
To go home with a guy who looked like me
We could satisfy a little more than just my curiosity
So just how drunk would you have to be
It’s easy to see that I’m no prize
We know you could have a lot of better looking guys
But everybody needs a little more variety
So just how drunk would you have to be
and will also give you his honest opinion on the direction of current "country" music-the Nashville pop/country. Some of my favorite lines come from the chorus of What Would Hank Williams Say and he puts it out there exactly what he thinks about the current "stars" of country.
What would Hank Williams say
About the crap that they’re calling country music today
Didn’t this used to be about the songs
Could somebody tell me just what in the hell is going on
And I hate when ol Kenny Chesney goes to playing air guitar
And I can’t believe the old lead singer for Poison was a judge on Nashville Star
And ol Toby Keith probably wouldn’t agree but I think that it’s wrong
When a tune called “Who’s your Daddy?” is considered a hit country song
Now I know this has been a really long post, and I did already get in trouble for not having my Music Tuesday post up so that people could actually read it on Tuesday! But hey, I got it done before 11pm-so we're good, right? But with all the painting and demolition and redoing of my house, I've really been just cranking up the music and having fun-and Jared Pete Gile has been at the top of my list lately and I wanted to share him and think about all the fun songs and the truthful, thoughtful songs he has. He may not ever make it far on the radio, but he and the other Kansas guys helped to influence my current music tastes, through all of those fun college nights.