Try that in a small town

Rhett Breedlove
Posted 7/3/24

It’s definitely a subject that gets thrown around quite a bit, but perhaps is never truly talked about the way it should be. Sure we have heard this subject spoken about from big time corporate …

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Try that in a small town


It’s definitely a subject that gets thrown around quite a bit, but perhaps is never truly talked about the way it should be. Sure we have heard this subject spoken about from big time corporate media outlets once in a while, but truthfully do they really answer all of our questions about this sort of thing?

Obviously no, so why not have an open dialogue on this right now.

First and foremost, any sort of artistic expression is protected in the Constitution. As it should be.

Creating art is always going to be an essential part of our minds and hearts no matter where our religious or political beliefs lie. It gives us so many extra things to look forward to of course, but even more so art gives us much more to feel and think about.

There’s an old saying that politicians tell lies to hide the truth. Artists tell lies to reveal it.

One subject which stirred a bit of controversy in recent times involved a country song entitled “Try that in a Small Town” by Jason Aldean. Some backlash occurred when certain music networks, particularly Country Music Television (CMT) chose to take it off the air presumably due to certain violent footage used in the video, as well as lyrics accused of being racist.

Understandably fans of the star and country music in general expressed concerns over censoring the very right for artistic expression we are talking about right now.

Here’s now why we have to talk about this with a little more depth.

It really doesn’t feel too good to have something which artistically speaks to you censored or even banned in certain ways does it?

If anything, welcome to the club. Now maybe you have a small taste of what others have been dealing with for a very long time.

That was just one country song. Other types of music, or forms of artistic expression if you will have been facing this issue for what seems like several decades now. If you were to ask any die-hard fan of such music as heavy metal or hip hop, absolutely they could tell you all about mainstream television and radio networks censoring or even all together banning their music.

It’s been going on for years, but in all actuality it really doesn’t stop the musician or the fans at all. Remember in the United States you have every right to listen to a piece of music, or choose not listen if it’s not what you are in to. 

If anything, censorship just fuels more curiosity for others to get their hands on the material and listen for themselves. And believe me, they will. So, if you found yourself a little upset over CMT taking one song off the network, don’t worry. The first time is always the hardest. MTV and VH1 did the same thing dozens of times to many artists and bands for years. 

It’s really just a business decision to cater to certain sponsored partnerships. If one song doesn’t fit well with certain policies, they simply don’t play it on their network. Not to worry, it always finds a different platform one way or another.

From an artist’s perspective he actually did his job and did it well. 

If anything whether you are a fan of country or not, we have to give kudos to Jason Aldean for pushing someone’s buttons enough to create a little controversy. Some may like it, some may not. It’s all part of expression. If one truly is an artist, if you’re not pissing people off once in a while you probably aren’t staying true to yourself and what you believe in.

That’s the majestic beauty of all art forms. Whether it’s country music, rap or heavy metal there’s something there which might reach someone. In other words, it truly has the power to change a person’s life for the better.

Usually it always does.

If it’s not your cup of tea, simply wish the artist the best and move on.

All this being said, there is one particular music group who has been around for a very long time now. Since 1991 to be exact.

They are a hip-hop duo with violent lyrics and frightening imagery to most, however have cited repeatedly artists such as Michael Jackson and Pearl Jam played a primary influence in their musical works.

We won’t say their name, but they have been labeled by various media platforms and music outlets as “the most hated band in the world.”

So much so that their own fans have been classified by the FBI as a gang. This of course means an individual wearing any sort of clothing or merchandise advertising this particular group could be subject to random searches and seizures.

This particular rap group along with their large following of devoted fans have been fighting this particular issue for decades. Additionally they have marched peacefully numerous times in Washington D.C. to protest being federally classified as a criminal organization.

All because of their love and devotion to one rap group.

Amusingly many loyal fans of this band are themselves normal everyday working people from all walks of life. Students, doctors, lawyers, construction workers, nurses, journalists and even caregivers have all self-identified as belonging to this particular group. Many have strongly maintained they are not gang members, but normal citizens who have found a powerful bond amongst others who share a deep love and appreciation for a particular type of music.

Unfortunately by their own account a handful of bad apples spoiled the fun for all of them which has led to very unfortunate, perhaps unconstitutional criminal profiling.

Truth be told again when it comes to the world of art; whether it be music, theatre, film, sculptures or paintings; this sort of thing only sparks more interest in the artist as well as their material.

So for those of you who felt frustration, resentment or even a bit of ostracization from one country song please don’t worry, and no need to overreact. 

That sort of thig only generates more interest in the subject matter.

Keep your music and your own artistic interests, but always let others have theirs. Always. 

At least you weren’t officially labeled by the U.S. government as a criminal organization for liking Jason Aldean for cryin’ out loud.