Blake Shelton is no stranger to controversy when it comes to speaking his mind. However, he has ruffled feathers among the country music community over some recent comments about fans of the music.
During an episode of Great American Country’s “Backstory,” Blake Shelton says, “If I am “Male Vocalist of the Year” that must mean that I’m one of those people now that gets to decide if it moves forward and if it moves on. Country music has to evolve in order to survive. Nobody wants to listen to their grandpa’s music. And I don’t care how many of these old farts around Nashville going, ‘My God, that ain’t country!’ Well that’s because you don’t buy records anymore, jacka–. The kids do, and they don’t want to buy the music you were buying.”
The irony of the statement is that Blake Shelton has been known to sing classic country songs in his set list, including “Redneck Girl” by the Bellamy Brothers. He also name checks Conway Twitty during his song “Hillbilly Bone.”
One country music legend didn’t take the comments lightly and posted on his Facebook page. Grand Ole Opry star Ray Price posted in response to Blake Shelton’s comments.
It’s a shame that I have spend 63 years in this business trying to introduce music to a larger audience and to make it easier for the younger artists who are coming behind me. Every now and then some young artist will record a rock and roll type song , have a hit first time out with kids only. This is why you see stars come with a few hits only and then just fade away believing they are God’s answer to the world. This guy sounds like in his own mind that his head is so large no hat ever made will fit him. Stupidity Reigns Supreme!!!!!!! Ray Price (CHIEF “OLD FART” & JACKA–“) ” P.S. YOU SHOULD BE SO LUCKY AS US OLD-TIMERS. CHECK BACK IN 63 YEARS (THE YEAR 2075) AND LET US KNOW HOW YOUR NAME AND YOUR MUSIC WILL BE REMEMBERED.” – Ray Price
Country music has had many influences over the years. However, it seems as though that remain strong are those that fall back on the classic country influence.
What are your thoughts? Do you agree with Blake Shelton or Ray Price? Should country music move away from its roots or continue to honor its past?
Jessica Blankenship is the owner and founder of Kentucky Country Music website with over 20 years experience in music journalism, concert planning, photography, and promotion. Jessica is a Kentucky Colonel and alumni of the 2019 Leadership Kentucky BRIGHT Class and a recipient of the Laurel County’s Ten Under 40 Award. Listen to her each week on WFKY on Friday mornings for the Nashville News Roundup.