Through the pits and peaks, highs and lows, and ups and downs, it is still evident that Miley Cyrus is musically talented. Starting her career at an early age, Cyrus has always been exposed to the music industry. People now recognize her as a trouble making, rule breaking, pop culture artist who always has her tongue sticking out. However, what some people may have forgotten is that somewhere deep within Cyrus’s heart lie her innate country roots.
Having Billy Ray Cyrus as a gene donor, Miley Cyrus was born with country in her blood. Many may not see it now, especially since Miley has done a 180 on her appearance both musically and physically, but Cyrus once was young country phenomenon.
Cyrus was born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee, otherwise known as the home of country music. She grew up on a family farm and lived a country life. Cyrus quickly adopted the love of country music by constantly being surrounded by country music icons, such as her own father, Billy Ray Cyrus, and her godmother, Dolly Parton.
For 5 years, Miley Cyrus devoted her time to having a hidden identity, known as the pop-singer Hannah Montana. Cyrus and her secret identity had a comedy sitcom on Disney Channel, Hannah Montana, which augmented Cyrus’ fame and fan base. Within the show, Cyrus oscillated between the characters of Miley Cyrus and Hannah Montana and also between music genres of country and pop.
Included in the show was Billy Ray Cyrus, who coincidentally played the role of her father. Sporadic musical performances by him and country guest appearance Dolly Parton, who also coincidentally played Miley’s godmother, demonstrated the importance of country music to the Cyrus family. It also spread the love of country music to the Disney Channel viewers.
Towards the end of the Hannah Montana series, the “Hannah Montana Movie” was released. Within the movie were country songs that became an instant hit. “Hoedown Throwdown” had kids and teenagers raving about and dancing along to the fast-pace, country banjo beat. On the other hand, “Butterfly Fly Away”, a duet by Miley and Billy Ray, had a slow guitar tone, sounding like a lullaby, that shined a light on the special relationship of a father and daughter, which is a common theme sung about in country music today. Although this duet was popular among the country crowd, their other father-daughter collaboration, “Ready, Set, Don’t Go” made it on the country charts and was nominated for CMT Music Award during the CMT Music Awards in 2008!
As years passed, Cyrus outgrew her Hannah Montana phase and wandered away from her country past. She chopped her hair and started living a life that her fans, and parents of fans, did not condone. Although this drastic change had led people to lose faith in her, Cyrus continues to prove them wrong by recording covers of songs by country legends. Cyrus’ cover of “Jolene” and her country-modified version of, “You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go”, originally sung by Dolly Parton and Bob Dylan respectively, dropped several jaws. Cyrus continues to cover songs and put a country twist on them, alluring her past country fans and keeping them on their toes. Could this possibly foreshadow the direction of all of her musical productions?
Many think that Miley Cyrus’ pop culture music and lifestyle are just a phase and that soon she will snap out of this funk. Judging by the sounds of her current recordings and knowledge of history repeating itself, it may be destiny that Miley disposes of these habits and reverts to her original country ways.
6 Responses to Bringing Back The Country In Miley Cyrus
Abby, your post was very interesting to read! Miley Cyrus has sure changed her ways from her country roots as a kid, to more of a rebellious young adult shocking her fans. The question you pose is interesting whether she will come back to singing country music or not, and to be honest I cant really tell which way she is going to lean. I feel that regardless of how far she has veered from the country music she used to produce, she definitely might fall back on it as a way to save her career. As you mention, she continues to cover country songs, so she definitely could come back to singing her famous country hits, which I feel that most of her fans might actually enjoy. I feel that most people have had enough of her rebellious stage and are waiting on her to change her image and come back to the way she used to be.
I think we can all agree that Miley does have an amazing voice and is musically gifted. Considering her family, she was destined to sing. I think it is interesting to look back at her early days because it is hard to believe what she was before she did a 180. I had no idea that was was nominated in 2008 at the CMT music awards. Also, I remember seeing the Hannah Montana movie and they portrayed her in a very country way. From the “Hoedown Throwdown” (which I did memorize the dance to) to her revealing her identity at a state fair, she was an innocent country girl. It is crazy how much stars can change, and I think it can be related to Taylor Swift although it was a little less crazy.
I sure do miss Hannah Montana! I remember watching that show as a kid and really enjoying it, and I loved the fact that her father and godmother on the show were her real life family. She really does have a great voice, especially in the songs that are more like ballads. Her country sound certainly holds a special place in my past, and to this day I still love the song “The Climb”. I really do hope that she goes back to being country, although I’m not so sure how Nashville would take it. She has made this new reputation for herself in the pop scene that I’m not sure she would ever be able to leave behind. For now, I guess I’ll just have to settle for Hannah Montana re-runs! This was a great read, thanks for sharing.
I lost so much respect for Miley when she bailed on her good-girl character and traded it in for a fame-seeking, attention-thriving, inappropriate rocker girl. The Miley all the young girls adored traded in her boots for, well, as lacking of clothes to wear on a stage as possible these days. She certainly shifted her fan base. I do, however, have to admit that maybe Miley was just sick of the Hannah Montana, good-girl act and ultimately decided she wanted to be herself to the full extent, resulting in the Miley we see now. She has an amazing voice and great song-writing talent. So, hopefully she doesn’t toss that down the drain with her good morals. I did like how you reminded us readers of the positive points Miley still offers us, amidst all the craziness she’s immersed herself into. Good read.
Abby, I had never really thought of Miley Cyrus being country, even when she was on Hannah Montana. I always considered her pop, but when you point out specific songs, I do agree that she has a country sound. I also like how you noted about her country roots. We talked about in class how it is easy to relate, and we like how country music stars are actually country when they sing about what it means to “be country”. You state that she lived on a farm and grew up in Nashville, Tennessee. Maybe you are right that she will end up going back to country music because of her roots, wow that would be very interesting!
This Miley Cyrus version seems so long ago it’s crazy! Like mostly everyone else, I completely forgot that Miley Cyrus was ever considered in the country genre. When I read this, at first I did not recollect any sort of memory of her singing ANY country song but I recognized the name of the song Hoedown Throwdown as I started reading. I never realized that she sang this song but I had heard of it since it was such a big hit when it first came out. While I was never an avid Miley Cyrus listener, I kind of hope she would consider a return to something like her old music and self to repair her image. It wouldn’t only help her, but it would gain more publicity and listeners for country music as well.