44th Academy of “Country Music” Awards Reaction

No, I am not dead and yes, I am a horrific monster for being so neglectful to this blog.  I feel so bad for posting nothing new since middle February.  I’ve been pretty busy and overwhelmed with work, dealing with student loan crap, I took a birthday trip, and I procrastinated too too long.  I don’t have much time to make posts these days, but I figured tonight was feeling good and I wanted to voice my opinion on some new things.  First off, the ACMs that took place on Sunday night – what a travesty to watch! These things get worse every year, seriously.  Even as an optimistic person, I don’t see a lot of real hope for the future of (mainstream) country music…

(I know, symbolism can only go so far, but I edited the above pic this way because, once again, the awards were all about the money – thus the ugly green color lol. I also used the “shoplifter” font because every time I watch these things, I feel like something big has been stolen from me, and from country music. The exclamation point kinda symbolizes how the intended audience for this show has young people written all over it!)

To begin, I did watch most the show on Sunday night (I switched back n forth between the awards, and one of my new favorite TV shows, Celebrity Apprentice – which I gotta say, as much as I love Clint Black and his music, I really didn’t like him that much in this last episode, and I am shocked that he wasn’t fired, as he should have been…but I still enjoy his music hehe).  I didn’t watch all of the Awards (thank God), but will comment on what I remember…even almost a week later. Here are reaction blogs from CU, 9513, and CC.

So, anyway, Brooks & Dunn semi-opened the show with their hit, and one of my favorites, “Play Something Country” (which caught me by surprise because that was their single like two years ago?), which was soon interrupted by Taylor Swift, Sugarland, AND Rascal Flatts (and Carrie Underwood joined too) who all sang small segments of their hit songs, which cut back n forth between the artists, and ended with a sing-a-long to B&D’s song.  Now, cutting forward to Taylor later in the show: she gave an over-the-top/I’m trying-too-hard performance of one of her new songs with a piano and David Copperfield, which began with “magic” and ended with an exaggerated head-into-arms gesture, which was supposed to be acting I’m guessing?  Wow, tragic.  There’s about a million more sells from teenage girls who were touched by how emotional it was (and btw, “Album of the Year”? WTF?).  Sugarland sang some song, and like I’ve said many times before, I’m not a fan of their’s, so I skipped forward…just don’t like that accent.  I didn’t even listen to the Rascals. Yuck.  No more screeching, please.  Carrie performed “I Told You So” in a huge staged-sized red dress and did one of the best vocal performances of the night.  I may not care for the song, but she did really good.  She seems to perform live best with the slower tunes. (oh, and congrats to her Entertainer win, though I do wish Strait won it, for selfish reasons :p).

Reba McEntire is hosting again and that’s great.  I love her and there’s a sense of comfort with her.  She did well with hosting duties, like always, and she became one of my favorite performers of the evening with her new single, “Strange”.  That song reminds me somewhat of “I’m Gonna Take That Mountain” , just with some rock sounds.  Can’t wait to hear the studio version.

Kenny Chesney and “Out Last Night”.  Hmm…decent, but still boring.  Would have been cool to see him with Mac McAnally, instead.  One thing I gotta say: I’m glad he didn’t win anything! (I’m a meanie, I know, that’s for sure, but I mean it.)

Congrats to Jamey Johnson for his win! He may look like a hobo and sorta creepy, but he’s actually country and I’m proud of him (I’m still not into “In Color”, however).  His performance was okay, though I hated the whole black-n-white thing they did with the screen.

Now with Heidi Newfield…hmm, I don’t think all the nominations were necessary, but I do like her.  I thought she might catch on fire, and that’s where all my attention was put towards during “Johnny & June”.

Toby Keith. I wish he would get rid of the trombones and stuff.

Haha, Jamie Foxx‘s introduction speech.  I enjoyed it, despite some feelings of uncomfortableness with his jokes and the crowd (I bet John Rich was pissssssssssed haha, but we’ll get to him soon – you’ll see his name in bold then).  Didn’t know Jamie was such a country fan.  Cool.

George Strait! THE Man!  His performance of “Troubadour” was pleasant, but I would have preferred something else, like an album cut (maybe bring Patty Loveless in to sing their duet? But that would make two Cash songs in one night and make Newfield look bad…so maybe not lol. How about “House With No Doors”?)  I do wish he got ‘Album’, but he’s got his Decade award and the tributes, so it’s okay.

Julianne Hough. Stick with dancing. Enough said.

Lady Antebellum: great performance.  A really pop-heavy tune, but their vocals go well together and are different. Wish them the best. I like the song.

Whoo, Lee Ann Womack!  I could have sworn she would have chose “Last Call”, but it’s better off doing the new single for promotional purposes.  I liked her performance, but I think it would have been incredible if she left the guitar at home and just stood/sat and sang.  I love “Solitary Thinkin’”! …. and “lonesome drinking”.  I do prefer the studio version of this song though, and the live Walmart Soundcheck MP3 version is really good too.

Keith Urban.  I didn’t watch his performance.  I got picky later in the show and wasn’t in the mood for the new one.

Miranda Lambert‘s new song is decent.  The imagery the metaphor brings is strong, though the song itself could be improved upon, production-wise.

John Rich.  I don’t even know where to start with this tool. After reading about his behavior, I just don’t have any respect for the guy.  I totally believe in everything in those reports because he strikes me as that type.  I’ll admit, “Shuttin’ Detroit Down” is not a horrible song.  I like the neo-traditional production it has, and in this live version, acoustic guitar is always cool, but for the most part, the song seems to be way too convenient. From his “Made in the U.S.A.” gimmick, to the annoying “New York City town” line, to everything else, I just can’t enjoy this. I would have fast-forwarded through this, but my mom wanted to watch it.

Miley Cyrus.  No one wanted to see this, but I went back and looked at it to see what people were talking about, and I still wasn’t impressed, at all.  Glad that this song bombed.

Blah. Don’t like Montgomery Gentry at all these days.

I loved Brad Paisley‘s joke about Little Jimmy Dickens being the baby when he won haha.  Congrats to Brad.

Trace Adkins.  He’s actually slowly getting back into favor with me, lately.  His performance was a nice tribute and it’s a honorable song.  Other people were more amazed by it than me (patriotic/war singles these days seem like their jumping on that opportunity), but I believe Trace means it and it brings some more reality to the situation, and this is an album cut. Congrats for his win, as well.

Matthew McConaughey (I actually spelled that right), is usually annoying but he was funny in his speech about the Strait boots story. The joked that Carrie later made during her speech was kinda odd, I thought.

Overall: Well, looks like I posted reactions to almost everything (most presenters excluded).  Highlight performances for me were: Womack, Strait, Underwood, Lady A, and Reba McEntire.

I’m hoping to make some more posts this following week (and maybe tomorrow), so keep looking back.

3 Comments

  1. Julianne Hough as the best new artist is a disgrace to country music. Just have the ACMs become a popularity contest because obviously real talent and singing ability don’t matter. She really needs to thank her dancing fans who have won her two trophies and this recent ACM award.

    • That whole fan voting thing is a stupid idea. Just another example of how bad country music tries to market itself to young people (I’m young, now 21, but I think country music was better when it was more for older people).

  2. I wasn’t impressed with the production on the Lambert song either.

    I did think the Adkins song was above just about all other mainstream country war songs…and I’m definitely not an easy sell in that area.

    I thought the Underwood joke was amusing and it’s too bad she had to worry about offending people with it.

    I completely missed the Fox monologue.

    I don’t love the Reba song, but it’s alright.

    Reba was a very good hostess, though I wish we’d seen more of her.

    I did not like the opening sequence and I really dislike “Play Something Country.” Kevin’s right that it’s a knock off of Mary Chapin Carpenter’s superior “Shut Up And Kiss Me.”

    I think I pretty much feel the same way you do about the Rich song. The live performance wasn’t bad and it’s kind of sonically pleasing, but it’s still sorely lacking in real substance.

    While I acknowledge, as you have, that the Lady A song was not country sounding, it’s a catchy pop song that I like for what it is.

    I like “In Color”, but I agree with Holerin’ Ben that the guitar stuff is pretty lame, in all reality, which has made the song less listenable for me over time. The performance wasn’t all that impressive either, though that may have been due to the music being amped up too much.

    Well, that’s all I can think of for now.


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