Category Archives: Music Videos

Justin Moore: The Real Champagne Papi

To anyone who has ever made fun of country music (I’m looking at you dad!), please watch this video. Then, watch it again. Then go ahead and remind me how “all country music is meaningless and sounds the same” while you jam to Drake in the background. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that “Hotline Bling” is quickly taking over the U.S. It’s quite scary that a song about receiving a booty call from an ex-girlfriend is virtually more well-known than all of Justin Moore’s songs combined.

giphy (9)On Tuesday Nov. 3, Phoenix radio station KNIX Country 102.5 posted a video of Justin Moore reading the lyrics to “Hotline Bling,” demonstrating the song’s senseless (and just plain dumb) lyrics. Featuring Moore’s southern accent and sarcastic tone, the hilarious video quickly went viral and was played more than five million times the day it was posted. On YouTube, most of Justin Moore’s more-popular music videos have a maximum of ten million views for the entire period they’ve been online. One could argue that “Hotline Bling” has made Justin Moore more famous than his hits like “Small Town USA” and “If Heaven Wasn’t So Far Away” did!

Justin Moore grew up working on his grandparent’s cattle farm in a small town in Arkansas. He began singing at the age of two, and continued to pursue his dream of making music throughout his youth. Upon graduating high school, he moved to Nashville where he eventually earned some opening spots on tours with artists like Luke Bryan, Trace Adkins, and Brooks & Dunn.

In 2008, Moore released his first single, “Back That Thing Up,” and made it onto Billboard’s “Country Top 40” chart. He released a second single, “Small Town USA,” in 2009; it reached number one on Billboard’s “Hot Country” chart and paved the way for his self-titled debut album.

Fast-forward a few years and Moore is still going strong. In 2014 he received the New Artist of the Year award from the Academy of Country Music Awards. He just released his (cleverly-named) latest single, “You Look Like I Need a Drink,” on Oct. 30. while he continues to work on his fourth album.

Justin Moore is a great example of a kid who had a dream, and reached it through hard work and dedication. I am hopeful that he’ll continue to release high-quality work and mark his territory in the country music world. Move over Drake because Justin Moore is the real Champagne Papi.

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Filed under Blog Post 4, Music Videos, Reflection

5 Best Country Sing-Along Jams

If you’ve never had a hair-flipping, bed-jumping, scream-singing dance party to country music, what have you been doing with your life? 90s and early 2000s women country singers gave so much to the pop-esque country genre. Their independent and take-on-the-world qualities make their music fun, and their love for love makes their music desirable. So grab a hairbrush to sing along because the following five songs are considerably some of the best country hits to dance around to that will make you feel like a professional while you belt them out in your room (with some sick dance moves, I’m sure…)

The Way You Love Me – Faith Hill

Honestly, does it get any better than Faith Hill? I can’t help but listen to her music and assume everything is about Tim McGraw and that makes me so happy I can hardly stand it. This song is the ultimate ode to the perfect man. This song is an accurate representation of how everyone in a relationship wants to feel. I could jump around to this song forever. Also, this video (!!!) is the greatest thing ever.

Best lyric to sing-along to: “You’re the million reasons why there’s love reflecting in my eyes”

Man! I Feel Like a Woman! – Shania Twain

Girls, this is our anthem. This song is best sung when you’re driving around with all your best girlfriends. (I can’t help but think of the scene in the Britney Spears movie Crossroads when Brit and friends belt this out on their road trip.) This might be the most poppy you can go and still be country. Shania really made herself known with this one. Girls just want to have fun and listen to Shania Twain and wear men’s shirts and short skirts.

Best lyric to sing-along to: “The best thing about a-bein’ a woman is the prerogative to have a little fun”

Suds In The Bucket – Sara Evans

This goes out to all the girls who have thought about the perfect boy that would make them drop everything to go be with him. This story about a small town teenage girl going off to be with her love regardless of the life she’s leaving behind is something that is straight from the movies. “You can’t stop love,” Sara sings and we all want to feel just that. The instrumental in this song provides for some necessary two-stepping and twirling around in cowboy boots.

Best lyric to sing-along to: “A little pony-tailed girl grown up to be a woman and she’s gone in a blink of an eye / She left the suds in the bucket and the clothes hangin’ out on the line”

Bye Bye – Jo Dee Messina

Although we love to jam out to happy, lovey songs, some of the best dance songs are the upbeat break-up ones. This one is a prime example. What’s better than screaming bye bye to the one who broke your heart? Sure, the dancing and the screaming is going to make you insanely tired but you’ll inevitably burn a lot of calories while doing so. Jo Dee sings about a man who just couldn’t make up his mind so she does it for him. You go girl. Keep doin’ you, we’re all taking notes.

Best lyric to sing-along to: “I’ve lost the game I guess / I did my best to win the part / Now I’m leaving here with what’s left of my heart”

Kerosene – Miranda Lambert

This is a complete and polar opposite song from many on this list (which is good because everybody enjoys a little variety) and is so necessary for anyone who is thinking of the perfect revenge to get on the worst of the worst who didn’t know how to treat you. Cheating is never ok, ok? Miranda totally gets revenge by setting this boy’s house on fire. “Life ain’t hard but it’s too long living like some country song,” she sings and decides to give up on love. One would deem this an appropriate statement after having your heart broken. So, don’t dance to hard to this one. (And don’t set any houses on fire…)

Best lyric to sing-along to: “Now I don’t hate the one who left / You can’t hate someone who’s dead / He’s out there holding on to someone / I’m holding up my smoking gun”

This mini-playlist is guaranteed to get you in the best mood and will provide the best dance party you’ve ever had. I’ll just go ahead and say you’re welcome — YOU’RE WELCOME.


Filed under Blog Post 3, Country Pop, Lists, Music Videos

Sam Hunt’s “Take Your Time”: A Music Video Review

sam-hunt-instagramDebuting his first full-length studio album Montevallo in late 2014, Sam Hunt is fairly new to the country music scene. Upon first listening, I found him to be fairly similar to the rest of the up and coming bro-country singers; he didn’t appear to have an incredibly distinct sound or look (though I can’t deny that he’s completely gorgeous), and his lyrics seemed to discuss nothing more than beautiful women. This was also my first impression of his song “Take Your Time” (2015)—I thought it was simply about trying to pick up a girl in a bar. However, after watching the music video for this song, I now have a deeper understanding of the song itself and a heightened respect for Sam Hunt as an artist.

The “Take Your Time” video is a completely unexpected presentation of the song as it tackles the difficult and raw topic of domestic violence. The video starts off happily by showing a woman, her husband/boyfriend, and their baby shopping together and enjoying kisses on the forehead. However, the story quickly turns dark as the man’s alcoholic tendencies and anger issues are exposed. Sam, watching these events unfold as a bystander, tries to find the best way to intervene. At the end of the video, he finally fights the man off while the woman and her baby escape in a beaten up pickup truck.

Sam’s lyrics “I don’t wanna steal your freedom / I don’t wanna change your mind / I don’t have to make you love me / I just wanna take your time” discusses his hesitancy in intervening in what appears to be an unsafe and troubling relationship. Sam is put in a difficult position as he struggles to find the courage to trust his instincts and take action. He isn’t trying to get the girl to fall for him, but instead is truly concerned about her well-being and wants her to “take [the] time” to get help.

I am completely impressed with Sam’s use of this video to promote social change and make a statement about something so real and under-discussed. Bringing issues to light is one of the first steps in creating change, and this song is the perfect example of how musicians possess the power to fight for causes that they care about. I’m excited to see where the rest of Sam’s career takes him, and am hopeful that he will continue to use his talent and passion to make a difference—ultimately encouraging others to follow in his footsteps.


Filed under Blog Post 2, Bro Country, Music Videos, Reviews, Song Analysis

Growing with the Genre: Jordanne’s Experiences

As the spring semester progressed, I dove into a few different country experiences that gave me a bigger picture of what it means to be a fan of country music. I attended my first concert by seeing Eric Church at the Frank Erwin Center, visited the Willie Nelson, went two-stepping at Midnight Rodeo, and watched O Brother,Where Art Thou? By doing more than just listening to country music, my appreciation for the genre has increased.

When I arrived at the Frank Erwin Center, one thought took over my mind. This Eric Church concert better be worth the cold trek I took to watch him. Long story short, I was impressed. Eric Church’s Outsiders Tour may have been my first concert experience, but it will not be my last. I learned that hearing the artist perform a song live portrays the emotion and story of a song a lot better than just listening online. Now whenever I hear an Eric Church song on Spotify, I think back to that cold March day and how I took a big step in appreciating an artist and his ability to connect with his audience as a whole and individually.

As for visiting the Willie Nelson statue, I actually did not know anything about Willie Nelson other than what he looked like before I took Rhetoric of Country Music. I felt very out of the loop, because of this. He’s such an enormous part of the development of country music. When I heard about his involvement in the Austin live music scene, I now understood why he is memorialized in Austin as opposed to Nashville.  Now that I know some of his history, I feel more educated about the genre and would definitely be more willing to listen to older songs from artists like Willie and Hank.

Dancing at Midnight Rodeo, although not a new concept to me, was my second favorite activity next to my concert experience. I feel like music is not complete unless there’s some form of dancing connected to it. Although I did not attend a night with live music, I still enjoyed dancing to the hits of yesterday and today. I feel like places like Midnight Rodeo would deeply benefit from either having a section of the night or one night a month specifically playing some of the oldies. Midnight Rodeo does stay true to its name in the fact that it plays country music past midnight. However I feel if they keep playing more and more hip-hop and pop hits to cater to the younger audience, it will lose its title as a “honky-tonk”. I feel that this was the activity that I felt the most immersed in the country music scene, out of the four I’ve chosen, despite the other music genres thrown in the mix.

Finally I liked the movie, because it showed that country music still has its place in the cinema. Granted, O Brother Where Art Thou? takes place in the 1930s South.  I feel that country music often gets overlooked when it comes to movie soundtracks, because people think that country music has to stay in the country. I’m not saying, “Let’s put a George Strait song in this super hero flick as the theme song”. However if a character is driving a car, it’s not realistic that every character that drives a car listens just to hip-hop and pop. Why can’t the character be listening to a nice George Jones or Dolly Parton song? Overall, I have to say I really appreciate that these experiences were part of the class. It really put the history of country music and its current songs into perspective. I definitely want to try more things on the list, in particular Chicken S*** Bingo sounds like it could be a blast. In a culture where hip-hop and pop rule the masses, country still rings in at number one to me because of the themes, lifestyle, and experiences that come with it.


Filed under Austin, Dancing, Live Music, Movies and TV, Music Videos, Outlaw, Storify

Katie’s Country Music Reflection

For my project the four things that I focused on was going to Billy Bob’s and attending a concert, going to Nutty Brown and attending a concert, taking a picture at the Willie Nelson statue, and then watching some of the American Country Music Awards. It was great getting to explore some of the most iconic country music places in Texas, while being able to keep up with country music on a more national level. Through this project I was able to explore new places, listen to great music, learn about country music history, and watch artists make history.

Billy Bob’s and the whole Fort Worth experience

Nutty Brown is a local Austin treasure. On top of it being a famous venue, I also got to see one of Texas Country’s most famous bands. At Nutty Brown, I got to see the Josh Abbott Band perform. This was probably one of the most fun concerts I have been too. The venue creates this wonderful atmosphere that just makes you want to dance. It is an out door venue where people can stand close to the stage or sit back and relax at some picnic tables. In addition to the venue, the band was fantastic. They played all of my favorite songs and they put on an amazing live show. Another iconic Texas place that I went to was Billy Bob’s. This was quite the experience for me. Not being from Texas I had not clue that dance halls like Billy Bob’s existed. The place was huge and had everything, even containing a bull-riding arena. The performer that night was Sara Evans. She was fantastic and the place was packed for her. I wrote about my experience going to Billy Bob’s for one of my blog posts. In addition, one of my favorite things about going to both these concerts was being able to see a band that embodies Texas Country while the other one has made her success in Nashville. I was able to experience two country concerts through this project that have two totally different backgrounds. Moving on, I went and took a picture with the Willie Nelson Statue. I never realized how famous this statue was until this class. I went this past weekend to take a picture and had to wait in a line, granted it wasn’t a long line, but still there were other people wanting to get their picture with Willie. It is very neat to see how the Austin community honors Willie, with not only the statue but also naming a street after him and building the new Willie Nelson exhibit in football stadium. Since I stayed mostly local doing this project I decided to watch the ACMs. I had already written a blog post about the major performances that would be happening so I wanted to watch the show to see how those turned out. My favorite part of award shows is watching the performances anyways so it was a win win for me. According the article written by Billboard the two worst performances of the night were the cross genre duets. This is surprising and funny because this was the main focus of my blog article due to the amount of hype that was being created for these performances. All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed this project because I don’t believe I would have actually experienced these things, which would have been a shame.


Filed under Austin, Awards, Class work, Country Symbols, Dancing, Live Music, Movies and TV, Music Videos, Reflection, Reviews, Storify, Texas, USA