Author Archives: Joshua Fleming

About Joshua Fleming

I am a sophomore, majoring in history.Wishing to become a high school teacher and football/basketball coach. I grew up in a small rural town in Texas called Alvin. I love to to travel i have been to a lot of places in the united states but have only been out of the country to Germany and Switzerland, i loved it was such a great experience for and can not wait to go back. I also love love to cook I grew up in the kitchen. Country music has been apart of my life from the beginning i remember as kid watching my grandparents dancing to George Strait and my parents dancing also. You could say that country music was my first love and i will always love listening to it. My favorite song would be either Thats My Job by Conway Twitty or Just To See Smile by Tim McGraw

Joshua Fleming life with Country Music

Written by Joshua Fleming

Written by Joshua Fleming

Looking back on this semester I have Experienced a lot of new things like two stepping and watching Nashville. Although I thought I knew a lot about country music coming in to this class, I now know there is a lot more to learn and I am up for the challenge. I have enjoyed going to concerts and doing similar things of that nature in this class and will continue to attend these types of event.

I have learned a lot about how space between a country artists and their crowd can affect how enjoyable a performance is. I experienced this through two concerts one with Eric Church and one with Dierks Bentley. they were both in two different venues which did affect my experience  with the concerts because i didn’t enjoy the Dierks Bentley Concert as much as I did Eric Church due to the fact I couldn’t connect to him that well because the venue was too big and your not close enough to interact with him like the crowd did with Eric Church. Which i think with country music concert i think there has to be that connection with the crowd because thats what country music thrives off of it that interaction.

Another thing i have Enjoyed this semester was getting close to country music through dancing and it has helped me to understand the reasoning for the certain tempos and rhythms that go along with a country song. If it wasn’t for me taking this class i probably would have never found one of my all time favorite past-time nor would I have found out that i was so good at Two Stepping so thank you class for that.Really though I have gained more of respect for the backing of the song rather than just the lyrics.

Though there are so many things  I could say about this class i will say this i have deeply enjoy learning where country music came from what is and what to look for in the future to know what it is. This class has open my eyes to a more variety of country music and has made me fall in love country music all over again and i hope one day i can show someone what country music is and what it can do for them. in conclusion you could say that i am now a more well rounded student of country music and will continue to become more knowledgeable of the subject at hand.

Thank you Dusty for a Wonderful Semester and teaching so much more about country music it truly has been great



Filed under Austin, Class work, Live Music, Reflection, Storify

Small Hometown Country Play List

In country there are several topics that could be consider main themes which, small hometowns would be one of those. The reason i think this is, is because if you ever lived in a small home town you would know that it tends to be very tight woven network of people who tend to be very simplistic people who find enjoyment out of just sitting around drinking beer and just have a fun time. The Reason I’m writing this article is because I recently started to appreciate the fact that a came from a small town were the stereotypes are exactly what they say. For the longest though I tried to avoid associating myself with my hometown because I really didn’t want to be judge on the stereotypes but instead, I wanted to become recognized for me not what people think i am due to those stereotypes.

1. Eric Church -Give Me Back By Hometown

The reason I put this at the top of my play list is for the simple fact that I can relate to this song just based on my life experience. Also I tend to enjoy more modern country music with more of a rock feel to the rhythm and this song plays along those lines and appeals to that nature. The song basically talking about someone that kind of had there hometown ruined by someone and how they want it back beccause that person doesn’t care about it like he does.

2. Jason Aldean Tattoos on this Town

This Song is #2 on play for some of the same reason as the song above it has that rock beat and its really easy to relate to my life. one thing i really love about this song it talks about how town leaves marks on and you leave marks on it as well which something that I feel that my hometown kind of did for me growing up, but also is has man i can look back at my hometown and know what memories are special to my friends and I.

3. Justin Moore Small Town USA

This song to me has a more of a traditional feel to the instrumentation which helps me to relate back to my childhood where I was listening to George Strait, Randy Travis, and Alan Jackson.Why its its number three on my list though it kind of reminds me of the things that I did with my friends and all those memories i enjoyed with them. The story in this song is this small town were everything very similar and pretty traditional and its a simply, easy going, fun town that is home .

 4. John Michael Montgomery – Letters from Home

Though I can’t relate to this song as much I know that my grandmother who is very close to me can. when she was younger she sent her father who serve in the military for over twenty years letters while he was station in Hawaii. Which she use to tell me story about my great grand father and what kind of man he was and talk about his trips over sees which is where I gain this sense of wanting to travel around the world. In this song it talks about this solider who is receiving “letters from Home” and how he reads them to his buddies and keeps his letters inside his uniform to keep them safe.

5. Mayberry- Rascal Flatts

The reason Mayberry is on here is kind of reminds me of the hometown feel, where everyone is nice and everyone knows everyone. I think it helps me to remember that there are still people out there who believes in respect and kindness. though this song is more pop country through its instrumentation I still tend to like just due to story told. Which, talks about this guy who is remembering walking through his hometown Mayberry and how everyone is so nice and the things that make is hometown unique.


Filed under Lists, Music Videos

Differences in Venues and Concert Experiences


Dierks Bentley Concert, Houston Rodeo

I recently went to a Dierks Bentley concert at the Houston livestock show and Rodeo in NRG Stadium. IMG_1476I also recently went to an Eric Church concert at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin. While I loved both concerts there was a major difference between the two; the venues they were performed at. The one I enjoyed the most was the Eric Church Concert for one I was a lot closer to the stage than I was at the Rodeo. I also enjoy the Artists performance and the choice in songs. The one thing i disliked most about Dierks Bentley’s Concert was the Distance between the fans and the stage which created this impersonal feeling for me.


Eric Church Concert, Frank Erwin Center

I have gone to several concerts at the Rodeo I never felt a void between me and the artist while they were performing in concert until I attended the Eric Church concert at the Frank Erwin Center then I began to realize the drastic difference in my experiences between the two concert  in which size does matter. Which it truly did because I wasn’t able to feel the connection with the artist like i did at Eric Church. Something I found interesting was even Dierks Bentley even felt that being so far away was weird. So much so that he walked off the stage and climbed over the Rodeo Fence to get into the crowd to sing and socialize with his fans.

After both experience, I found different views for the Artist and the venues themselves. IMG_1352With Eric Church and the Frank Erwin Center, I was really impressed with how close in contact I was with Eric and I felt connected with the audience in sharing a great memory for the books. When it came to Dierks Bentley, I did not feel the same I felt distracted and didn’t enjoy it as much because I felt to distant from Dierks and the crowd, they never seemed to get into the concert by like singing along with the songs. Even though Dierks tried to achieve that connection with his fans, I believe that the venue didn’t allow  him to do that successfully because the distance was to big to let him reach out and grasp the hands of his fans, like Eric’s concert allowed him to do. In conclusion I think that having small, more intimate setting which allows for a more connected crowd that  interacts with the artist, makes for a better experience for not only the fans but also the artist themselves.


Filed under Austin, Country Rock, Live Music

Jamie Foxx tribute to George Strait on the CBS George Strait special

George+Strait+Norma+Strait+Academy+Country+B9F99BaVpvjlWhile watching The CBS George Strait special, I saw Jamie Foxx give a Tribute to George Strait by singing his song “you look so good in love”. Before Jamie Sang the song he mentioned an experience when he was younger about trying to go see George in the town next over to his hometown. He talked about when he found out that George was coming to his town to preform, that he was going to see him no matter what even if he had to go over the tracks to see him. As Jamie said, unfortunately he wasn’t able to see him but no one believed him that George strait had performed there until he met George Strait and he verified his story.

I enjoyed watching the tribute for one because I love that song but also it shows how much George Strait has influenced country music artist but also other Genre Artists like Jamie Foxx who is an R&B artist. It amazes me how a country artist could influence an artist who isn’t even in the same Genre. This truly shows how country music has shaped music today and how George will be known as one of the greats for all time.

While Jamie was singing the tribute, I saw some similarities and some differences in how he sung it and how George sings it. In Jamie’s version, it has more of a gospel and R&B sound to his voice; whereas with George, it has a deeper tone and a more rustic feel to his voice. The most profound similarity is the way the music flows with lyrics showing that side of Nashville sound and being elegant and smooth in both of their versions of the song.

Although Jamie wasn’t the only person who sung a song in tribute to George i think that his was the most profound due to the fact that exemplifies that country music can cross all boundaries even other genres. As I finished watching the rest of special I started to look back to my past to remember things about George Strait and how much his music has affected me and I am not even a country singer so I knew that some of the people like Jamie, Brooks and Dunn, Alan Jackson, Blake Shelton , Miranda Lambert, and Taylor swift who are singers, how much he has affected their lives in a tremendous way by either influencing their music or allowing them to be the opening act in his concert for their first concert. George Strait has and will always be an iconic figure in the music business no matter what genre it is and this tribute below shows how this is true.


Filed under Awards, Live Music, Music Videos, New Traditionalism, Reflection, Uncategorized

Jesse James


After listening to troubadour by George Strait and hearing Jesse James’s name I was curious too how many country songs talk about him in their lyrics and why. Some of the people that sang about Jesse James included Johnny Cash a well known country artists and also Woody Guthrie. A lot of older traditional country songs talk about him and I was kind of curious as to why. After listening to a few songs I start to see a pattern to Jesse’s story, which he was known for being the fastest gunslinger in the west, bank/coach robber, outlaw, and a murderer.

After hearing those songs I wanted to see whether the stories had any truth too them. I found some information about his story and parts of the stories are truth but some of them were just rumors and myths. So I did some more digging and found out that he was from Missouri where he lived on a slave farm with his mother Zerelda James, his father Robert James, and his brother Frank James. I read on about his outlandish lifestyle as an outlaw. It all started when he joined the confederate guerrillas lead by Bill Anderson known for terrorizing his enemies with scalping and other inhumane tortures.

Shortly after Jesse joined the guerrillas the civil war had been won by the union, so eventually they had to surrender too but of course as we know the story for Jesses James continues. He goes on to rob banks, coaches and trains. Eventually he becomes the greatest known outlaw, muderer, and robber. As I had said previously a lot of older country songs talk about Jesse James and I believe for one is because he was such legendary southern outlaw so it would have been stories that most of those country singers would have heard about as a child, which we all know, or at least I do, and who wouldn’t have wanted to be an outlaw like Jesse James? I believe it inspired their wild side and the song was a way for them to escape reality and show that they were just like him and they could be free and wild-spirited.

So in conclusion I think that Jesse James plays a big role in older country for the simple reason his stories were told by so many songs and still to this day he is talked about in songs, movies, even an music artist’s stage name is Jessie James so that their fans can resonate them with Jesse’s wild side. Time and time again you will hear Jesse James story being told through country songs because he is what you would have called the real southerner.

And if you want to learn a little more about Jesse James here is a short interesting documentary about his life where I got most of facts about Jesse James.


Filed under Uncategorized